Each year members of the Western Washington Chapter PGA are selected by their peers to receive the following awards based on their outstanding achievements. These honorees will be nominated by the Chapter for Section recognition in the following year.


Merchandiser of the Year – Public

Jacob Lippold – Chambers Bay

Since the pandemic hit, Jacob has relied heavily on the cornerstone of his merchandising philosophy – flexibility. By maximizing the use of the space and the orientation of the shop, he is able to get the most out of the limited visits he receives throughout the day. In addition, he has broadened the offerings of the shop beyond the normal items of a high-end public facility to great success. Jacob’s response to the challenges of 2020 has been truly inspiring.

“However, as with all challenges in life, it is in the way that we respond, plan, execute and the accompanying attitude that we exude that guides the ship. While none of us could predict what would happen this year, we can reevaluate and make sure that we are in the best position possible as we regain traction and look to balance the need to move inventory while maintaining margin to see profits during a constantly unpredictable market.” – Jacob Lippold

Merchandiser of the Year – Private

Craig Hunter – Sand Point Country Club

Craig used the weeks of closure caused by the pandemic to get his shop in tip-top shape to welcome back members once the shutdown was lifted. In addition, Craig turned to online options through his vendors and created an “exclusive to Sand Point” website to create sales opportunities during the lockdown. When the doors of the shop reopened to the membership, Craig shifted his focus to ensuring a positive and vibrant experience for the membership.

“This year, more than ever, it’s time to make sure you appreciate your membership and how they support you. It’s so important to be nice to all your members and ensure everyone feels kindness and that their club experience is a welcome relief from the stresses of these difficult times.” – Craig Hunter

Merchandiser of the Year – Resort

Chris Koch – Salish Cliffs Golf Club

What is most impressive about Chris’ operation is the use of the 600 square foot shop space and the creative promotions and value add packages that have helped bolster his numbers. When hampered with occupancy restrictions and various guidelines due to COVID-19, Chris was able to pivot and use these guidelines to his advantage. He offers his customers a new look at the shop while maintaining safe social distancing practices.

“We have created a one-way loop through the golf shop which gives guests a self guided tour of all of our merchandise.  A difficult situation has given us the opportunity to give our golfers a new look at our shop.” – Chris Koch