NAME | Brian Laurent
TITLE | Executive Director, Ohio Turfgrass Foundation
HOMETOWN | Powell, Ohio (born in Decatur, Indiana)
What’s a day in the life for you in your job? Each day is different. Lately, most of my time has been focused on finalizing details for our conference and show in December. There’s a lot that goes into coordinating logistics for 100 speakers, over 100 exhibitors and a few thousand attendees. Luckily, we have a great team in place to put it all together
What should golf course superintendents know about your organization that they don’t already know? I think superintendents should know that we have the resources and provide opportunities for them to expand their knowledge base beyond just tees, greens, fairway and rough. Some of the specialists that we work with have an extensive horticulture background and are excellent resources for issues with trees and ornamentals. Additionally, we also work with sports turf and lawn care professionals and the opportunities are endless for idea sharing at events like the conference and show.
When you’re gone from the golf industry, how do you want to be remembered? I hope that people will say that the programs and organizations with which I’ve had the fortune of working with are better than when I started.
If you were born 100 years ago, what would you do for a living? I would like to think that I would’ve been a golf course architect. It would have been pretty special to be part of the golden age of architecture.
Who is your hero? I’m going to cheat and pick two — my mom and dad. They both worked extremely hard to achieve great success in their careers and were always there for my brother and I. They were and continue to be great role models for us and now for their grandchildren as well.
What’s the best thing about the golf industry? The people. You don’t find many industries where people are so willing to help one another. Whether it’s lending a piece of equipment to another superintendent, or the community coming together to support a colleague that’s ill — the people in this industry are always there for one another.
What’s the worst thing about the golf industry? Slow play. As a father of two young boys that are in about every activity imaginable, having to wait on every shot and taking up to five hours to play a round just won’t work, especially when we’re trying to grow participation.
What golf course can’t you wait to get on and why? There are so many good golf courses out there. In Ohio, I’m anxious to see The Camargo Club, because I love Seth Raynor courses.
Describe golf course superintendents in one word? Resourceful.
Who would you rather play golf with –– Arnie or Jack? Why? Jack. As a former Buckeye golfer, we need to stick together.
If you were a super hero, who would you be and why? If the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles count as super heroes, I’d be Michelangelo because we both love pizza.
What do you like to do away from your job? My favorite thing to do away from the job is play in the backyard with my kids! We set up a whiffle ball field in the backyard that saw lots of action this year. I can’t wait for warmer weather so we can get back on it.
What is your all-time favorite song? “Piano Man” by Billy Joel.
What’s your favorite movie and why? “Anchorman.” My friends and I probably quote it more than any other movie when we’re around each other.
Speaking of movies, who’s your favorite character from “Caddyshack”? Ty Webb, for his one-liners.
YOUNG GOLFER IMAGE: SONYAE/ESSENTIALS/ISTOCK
NUNCHUCK IMAGE: IZZAT/ESSENTIALS/ISTOCK