Already punching above its weight for a province of its size, Prince Edward Island is ready to make its next step in golf with the appointment of Sean Joyce as the Executive Director of their provincial sports organization.
Joyce had been serving as the Provincial Coach for the Prince Edward Island Golf Association, in concert with his duties as the Business Operations Manager at the Eagles Glenn Golf Club in Cavendish. In his new dual role, he will leave behind the job at Eagles Glenn for the one with the PEIGA, which he assumed on October 18th. He will now be able to put his full capabilities into a task that he adores, the development golf in the province.
Joyce, a PGA of Canada Class A member, is no stranger to the province, he cut his teeth in the golf industry there as a student at in the Holland College Golf Management Program and as a teaching professional at the Canadian Golf Academy through 2009.
In 2010 he moved to Ontario where he gained further coaching and industry experience at The Marshes Golf Club and GolfTec. He returned to Canada’s smallest province in 2016 for the positions at The Eagles Glenn and as the Provincial Team Coach.
Joyce will be taking the place of Rod MacNeil who served as the Executive Director of the Prince Edward Island Golf Association for the past decade.
In a recent release, Brenda McIlwaine, President of The Prince Edward Island Golf Association, thanked MacNeil on behalf of their board for his years of dedication to the Association and wished him well in his future endeavours.
“The timing of it all; it’s nice that it is sorted out now, I wrapped up Eagles Glenn, actually Tuesday of last week and started the next day with the Association full-time,” Sean Joyce shared with Flagstick.com by phone on Monday.
Discussions about the possibility of Joyce taking on both positions started earlier this year and he says one of his biggest assets to the job, as a pro, will be the ability to personally take on the grass-roots golf programming. In fact, on Tuesday, he will be headed to the far east end of the island to run a Golf In The Schools program for children in Souris.
That’s important to him as their association now serves 19 member clubs and 2,000+ golfers but the hope is to continue to develop the next generation of golfers in the province; the next Lorie Kane, if you will.
“I just wasn’t able to do that last year in the winter with my 9 to 5 position at Eagles Glenn,” conveys Joyce. “It’s nice to be able to take that part-time sport development role and tie it into the ED (Executive Director) responsibilities and make it a full-time role. Wherever we need help, whatever needs attention, we can now do it.”
“The timing for me as a golf professional, to end up with the opportunity to move into something like this was kind of the right place, right time. I’ll miss being at a golf course but as a golf professional I like teaching and coaching the most and be able to help golf grow and develop in this province is an honour.”
Working With Golf Canada
In his new position Sean will work with Golf Canada, delivering sport development programs along with administering membership and amateur events.
“Golf Canada has created some great programs that I have been working with for years but we need to have more of them implemented in the province,” said Joyce. “I’m looking forward to focusing on Future Links and Golf in Schools in 2018. Both programs target younger players and will help build a golfing population for the Island for years to come. ”
Fresh to the job, Joyce says there are a lot of things for him to absorb and much planning to do but he is diving in right away to both pursue and initiate programs – to continue what MacNeil and the board at the PEI GA have been doing. He’s knows he has a strong base to work with.”
“Overall, golf is in a good spot on the island,” he asserts. “It’s been a record tourism year and we have had some really positive things happening in our golf community. We have a lot of things going for us.”