Announcement posted by Social Golf Australia 09 Aug 2021
AUSTRALIA’S Largest Golf Club and Golf Network, Social Golf Australia has announced the appointment of highly-esteemed golf industry veteran, Richard Fellner, to the newly-created role of Media Manager.
Previously the Editor of Inside Golf Magazine—where he led the editorial and design team for over 12 years—Fellner is a multi-award-winning photojournalist, columnist and marketing/media professional. He is highly respected in the Australian Golf Industry, and brings decades of international golf and media experience to the role.
Fellner’s dedication to growing the game of golf at a grass-roots level has resulted in numerous awards from the Australian Golf Media Association, and has earned him high praise from the top levels of the wider golf industry.
A key focus for the new role is to help SGA boost awareness and community engagement with its expanding stable of industry-leading, game-growing products and services; notably SGA’s Official Australian Golf Handicaps, their highly-popular Major Golf Events & Travel Getaways, and their increasing number of fortnightly Golf Open Days at clubs and courses across Australia. He will also drive a variety of exciting online projects, promotions and Social Media campaigns to add value to both SGA customers and industry partners.
The appointment represents a “homecoming” of sorts for Fellner, who has been a customer of (and occasional consultant to) the SGA Team since Matthew and Sally Pitt founded the business in 2004. Fellner was one of the business’ first Golf Handicap customers, and has played regularly in their various golf events over the last 17 years.
“I watched Matt and Sally grow the business from a tiny social golf club—run from their living room table—to what is now Australia’s largest golf club and handicap provider, with nearly 10,000 GolfLink numbers issued,” Fellner says. “Matt and Sally both worked extremely hard over the years—with plenty of ups and downs along the way. But their positive attitudes, dedication to their dreams and incredible work ethic eventually began to bear fruit. It’s been one of those true ‘Aussie Battler Success Stories’—one that has been a real joy to witness.
Matthew Pitt, founder of SGA, echoed Fellner’s remarks, noting that Fellner’s appointment has added importance.
“We are delighted to have Richard join the team,” says Pitt. “Richard and I have been golfing pals since before either of us were in the industry. It was our shared love of the game that brought us together as friends many years ago, and we have remained good pals throughout our parallel paths in the golf industry.
“As a family business, we place a very high value on loyalty, honesty, communication and relationships which makes Rich a perfect fit for SGA. Richard also knew my late wife, Sally, who founded SGA with me which makes him being part of our family business very meaningful to me.”
SGA General Manger, Mick David, regards Richard’s arrival as a key strategic step for SGA.
“SGA’s approach has always been to support and grow the game of golf. Our handicap model was established in 2006 in partnership with Golf Australia to create a pathway of access to golf club membership. We have succeeded in delivering 1000s of new members to clubs around Australia and have seen the model we established replicated by other providers. We are proud of our position as an innovator in golf and Richard joining our team is a huge boost to continuing our growth and success in growing the game. His deep knowledge of the game and its history, his core values that reflect golf’s commitment to integrity, his broad understanding of the industry and his skills and experience as a writer make him a perfect addition to our team and central to our future growth, success and continued innovation in golf.”
For Fellner, the appointment also represents an opportunity to join a team that operates under an inspiring set of principles and values.
“One thing that has always impressed me about SGA is Matt’s (and the team’s) unwavering dedication to their core values,” Fellner says. “They operate the business using the same values upon which the game of golf itself was founded: honesty, integrity and respect. SGA foster an inclusive and welcoming community (both to the staff and customers), and have built a reputation in the industry for professionalism, credibility, loyalty and trust. I’m extremely proud and fortunate to now be a part of this business.”
In addition to his role at Inside Golf, Fellner has previously held top-level media-related roles at Sensis, Realestate.com.au, Oracle Corporation, INVESTools and many other world-class organisations. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Eastern Golf Club, and is a member of both the Australia Golf Media Association, and the Golf Society of Australia (which works in partnership with Golf Australia). He also has a long history in the game itself: As a player since the age of 4 in the United States, Fellner competed at the junior, high school, state (Nevada) and university level (University of California, golf scholarship). He has played and reviewed courses all over the world, and has interviewed many of the great players of the game (including Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson and Greg Norman). He has also been a featured guest on many Australian "sports talk" radio shows and networks, including ABC Grandstand, SEN 1116, Melbourne Talk Radio 1377, 2GB and others.
ABOUT SOCIAL GOLF AUSTRALIA
Social Golf Australia is a golf service provider offering official golf handicaps and golf events. Their approach is to offer golfers value, flexibility and choice in a user-pays model where they can select the services that suit them and pay only for what they need.
SGA is the biggest golfing community in Australia and have a range of industry partners (Including Srixon & Cleveland Golf, Garmin, The Card Network, Mantra Hotels and others) that support SGA offering great value golf services. They currently offer official golf handicaps, host over 120 events a year in six states, six annual major tournaments (from 3-7 days long) and other feature events and golf tours. The business focusses on fostering a friendly and welcoming golfing community based on the values of honesty, integrity, loyalty and trust.
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