Jerry Magee is the Vice President of Business Development at AmTrust North America, a corporate partner with IOA. On Wednesday, he got the chance to play in the IOA Golf Classic pro-am with Symetra Tour professional Kim Welch (Sacramento, Calif.). He’s played in pro-am’s many times before, but called this experience a top 3 golf round of his life.
If he wasn’t at Alaqua Country Club, he would have been at his desk with two monitors in front of him looking at sales numbers and trying to set up appointments for the next couple of weeks.
“This was like skipping school for me, I expected to have a good time, but it far exceeded my expectation,” said Magee. “It had a really good feel to it. She is phenomenal, she has such an easy way about her and it was a golf round that I felt like I played with people I knew for 20 years. She was so unassuming and part of the group.”
It was all about the initial vibe. Magee said he’s played in pro-am’s where he could tell the professional was schooled on exactly what to do and it seemed forced. Not with Welch.
“It was natural,” said Magee. “It was like a regular foursome going out and busting on each other. One of the guys in the group had 1990’s rap going. Snoop Dog was playing while we were hitting. We just had a good time.”
Magee had such a great time on Wednesday that he is coming back this weekend to follow Welch in tournament rounds.
“If you’re a corporate stooge and come to this thing because you have to, it’s not going to be as fun,” said Magee, whose company is a sponsor of the tournament. “For me, it’s a day I don’t have to go into the office and I get to watch people that are truly excellent at their craft and that is truly inspirational. And this is the building block for the LPGA so you think about how good they are and then realize they are still trying to get there.”
Before today, Magee’s stereotype of a pro-am was as follows: a group of corporate stiff’s with a professional just battling their way through a five-hour round.
“This felt so much more comfortable and familiar,” said Magee. “I would pick Kim to play golf with any day of the week. She was just a cool person to hang out with."