The American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) welcomed five new Associate members to its ranks at the group’s recent 71st Annual Meeting in Jupiter, Florida. Their elections increase the number of ASGCA members who practice around the world to nearly 180. The new members are: Gene Bates, Thad Bell, Mike Gogel, Brandon Johnson and Sean Quinn.


• Bates heads Bates Golf Design Group, Inc., North Palm Beach, Florida. He attended Ohio University and Colorado State University and started his design career with Kirby, Player & Associates as a design apprentice in 1979. After a stint with Jack Nicklaus Golf Services as V.P. of Design, he opened his own studio in 1988. His representative courses include: Canyons Golf, Park City, Utah; Salish Cliffs Golf Course, Shelton, Washington; The Ridge, West Valley, Utah; Soldier Hollow Gold Course, Midway, Utah; and Soldier Hollow Silver Course, Midway, Utah.

• Bell received his Landscape Architecture degree from the University of Georgia in 1991. He started his golf course architecture career with Jack Nicklaus Design, and joined Ernie Els Design in 2006. His representative courses include: Anahita Four Seasons Golf Club, Mauritius; The Els Club Teluk Datai, Langkawi, Malaysia; The Els Club Desaru Coast (Coast and Lakes Course), Johor, Malaysia; The Els Club Valley Course, Johor, Malaysia; and The Els Club Desaru Coast, The Ridge, Johor, Malaysia.

• Gogel is a 1993 graduate of Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, with a degree in engineering. He began his career in golf on the construction side, and worked for Tripp Davis, ASGCA, Scott Miller, and John Fought, ASGCA, before opening Mike Gogel Golf Design, Inc., in 2012. His representative courses include: Grand Canyon University Golf Course, Phoenix; Black Butte Ranch – Glaze Meadow, Black Butte Ranch, Oregon; The Dallas Country Club, Dallas; Country Club of Jackson, Jackson, Mississippi; Wayzata Country Club, Wayzata, Minnesota; and Riverside Country Club, Provo, Utah.

• Johnson earned his Landscape Architecture degree from North Carolina State University in 1997, and his Masters in Landscape Architecture from Harvard University in 1999. He began his career as Manager of Design for The First Tee, and moved to Arnold Palmer Design in 2006, where he is currently Vice President/Senior Golf Course Architect. His representative courses include: Spring Island, Old Tabby Links, Okatie, South Carolina; Wexford Plantation, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina; Pure Scene Golf and Country Club, Kunming, China; Lakewood National, Bradenton, Florida; Bay Hill Club and Lodge, Orlando, Florida; and Frenchman’s Reserve, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

• Quinn holds a turfgrass diploma from Cape Technikon in Cape Town, South Africa. He began his career as a construction superintendent, moved to designer in 2001, and was hired as a designer by Jack Nicklaus Design in 2004. His representative courses include: St. Francis Links, St. Francis Bay, Eastern Cape, South Africa; Serengeti Golf Club, Johannesburg, South Africa; The Club at Steyn City, Johannesburg, South Africa; Houghton Golf Club, Houghton, Johannesburg, South Africa; and Australian Golf Club, Kensington, Sydney, Australia.

Candidates for Associate membership in ASGCA complete a rigorous, multi-phase application process that includes peer review of four completed courses, discussions with project owners and a personal interview to assess the candidate’s professional capabilities.

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