HISTORICAL TIMELINE OF FLUSHING VALLEY GOLF CLUB
Flushing Valley Golf Club was designed in 1930 by Wilfred Reid & William Connellan
Wilfrid Ewart “Wilfie” Reid
EARLY CAREER Reid studied club and ball making under Tommy Armour‘s father, Willie, in Edinburgh, Scotland. A scratch golfer at 15, Reid turned professional at 17 and was a protégé of Harry Vardon who helped him get a club professional job at La Boulie Golf Club in Versailles, France, in 1901 for roughly five years. He later was the professional at Banstead Downs Golf Club in Sutton, London, England, for roughly nine years and a successful tournament player. Reid – who was never short on confidence – was a fine competitive golfer despite being small of stature, and he beat his mentor, Vardon, on several occasions.
TOURNAMENT STATS In 1913 Reid visited America with Vardon and Ted Ray where they played in several tournaments including the famous 1913 U.S. Open in which he tied for 16th — Reid tied Vardon for the 2nd round lead and played with Francis Ouimetin the 3rd round. In 1915 he tied 10th. His best finish in the U.S. Open was a T-4 in 1916. He also won the 1926 Michigan PGA Championship and had 26 holes-in-one in his long playing career.
CAREER AS A CLUB PROFESSIONAL In February 1915 Reid emigrated to America at the invitation of Clarence H. Geist to be golf professional at Seaview Golf Club in Galloway, New Jersey, after the outbreak of World War I. His career in America as a club professional included positions at several of America’s top clubs:
- Broadmoor Golf Club, Colorado Springs, Colorado
- Seminole Golf Club, North Palm Beach, Florida
- Country Club of Detroit, Grosse Pte. Farms, Michigan
- Beverly Country Club, Chicago, Illinois
- Atlantic City Country Club, Northfield, New Jersey
- Willmington Country Club in Delaware
- La Gorce on Miami Beach
- Indianwood Club (now Indianwood Golf and Country Club) in Michigan; he was co -founder and creator, part owner and golf course designer of Indianwood (Old Course-1925), a classic links-like course located in a rare, sandy area in the woods north of Detroit.
PGA Wilfrid served the PGA of America throughout his entire career. Less is known about his role in the British PGA. He became a member of the PGA of America in 1917 and was appointed to the national PGA Executive Committee as a vice president at large. In August 1920, he was elected VP of the PGA of America and reelected in 1921. In 1920 and 1921 he also held the Office of Secretary of the Southeastern Section PGA. Later in 1929 he was the president of the Michigan Section PGA for three years.
GOLF COURSE DESIGN Not only was Reid a wonderful golf teacher, his greatest accomplishments were golf course designing. Reid began designing golf courses at an early age and laid out courses in Europe and Britain before settling in the United States. He once estimated that he had designed 58 courses and remodeled some 43 others during his design career.
While based in Michigan during the 1920s, he partnered with family friend, turf farm owner and golf course construction contractor, William Connellan, at Indianwood; (Connellan had once worked building golf courses for Donald Ross). Together (in the 1920’s and 30’s) they went on to design and build some 20 courses in Michigan:
- Port Huron Golf Club, (Reid, Connellan), Fort Gratiot, MI
- Indian River Golf Club, (original 9 hole), (Reid), Indian River, MI
- Birmingham Country Club, (Reid), Birmingham, MI, 1916
- Olympic Club, (Reid), original 18-hole Lakeside Golf Club course, San Francisco, 1917; in 1918, The Olympic Club assumed control of the operations of the financially distressed Lakeside Golf Club and by 1922, the Club purchased enough acreage to replace the original golf course with two 18-hole golf courses.
- Water’s Edge Golf Course, (Reid), Grosse Ile, MI (9-hole course commissioned by William S. Knudsen)
- Brae Burn Golf Club, (Reid, Connellan), Plymouth, MI, 1923
- Gaylord Country Club, (Reid), Gaylord, MI, 1924
- Indianwood Golf and Country Club– Old Course, (Reid, Connellan), Lake Orion, MI, 1925
- Tam-O’Shanter Country Club, (Reid, Connellan),West Bloomfield, MI, 1926 (redesigned)
- Bald Mountain Golf Course, (regulation course), (Reid, Connellan), Lake Orion, MI, 1929
- Flushing Valley Country Club, (Reid, Connellan), Flushing, MI, 1930
Eventually, Reid’s design work numbered over 90 new or remodeled courses across the United States. In addition, he designed courses in:
England (redesigned Banstead Downs GC, Sutton Surrey, Great Britan, 1914)
France (La Boulie Golf Club)
Belgium (La Vallee course) and Canada
END OF LIFE Reid retired to Florida in the early 1950s and consistently improved his game in both social and competitive rounds. Even into old age, he continued to “beat his age” in score on his birthday. He died on November 24th, 1973 at the age of 89 in West Palm Beach. In 1985, Reid was posthumously inducted into the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame.
Vice President and General Counsel
Professional Summary: Jason Pearsall is Detroit attorney and an award winning technology entrepreneur in the golf industry. Pearsall received his bachelor’s degree from Wayne State University and shortly thereafter, founded Performance PC, an engineering and manufacturing firm which built high performance super-computers. Pearsall sold Performance PC to a Chicago technology company before attending Wayne State University Law School where he was recognized as a Carl Ziemba Scholar in 2010. Pearsall would go on to accept a position as corporate legal counsel for Nexteer Automotive, a $2.5B multinational technology company in the automotive industry. While on Nexteer’s legal staff, Jason’s volunteered pro-bono business consulting and legal advice to Metro-Detroit technology startups. Pearsall would go on to co-found “Golfler,” a software development firm that builds mobile and web applications for golf courses.
Michael Rawlins, PGA
Professional Summary: Michael Rawlins is an experienced PGA Professional that graduated from the PGA Golf Management program at Ferris State University. Since then, Rawlins has worked as the Assistant Golf Professional at some of the most prestigious golf courses in the United States including Bearpath Golf and Country Club in Eden Prairie, MN and the exclusive Reserve Club in Indian Wells, CA. After graduating Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a PGA Class A membership in 2013, Rawlins accepted a position as Golf Professional and Assistant Manager at Rackham Golf Course where he has assumed responsibilities as Rackham’s General Manager as well as Motown Golf Group’s Historian.
Professional Summary: After receiving his bachelor’s degree at De La Salle University in the Philippines, Arca received a golf scholarship as a graduate student at Grand Valley University where he would concentrate in Human Resource Management & Hospitality. After graduating from Grand Valley, Arca enrolled in the PGA Apprentice 2.0 Program. In 2010, Arca became the Assistant Golf Professional at Cherry Creek Golf Club where he created a junior program and also served as director of instruction and golf tournaments. After completing the PGA’s Management Program in 2012, Arca began working as a head golf professional for Vargo Golf, where he would serve two year tenures as General Manager of Chandler Park Golf and Rackham golf courses respectively.
Food and Beverage Manager
Professional Summary: John Pearsall is a Detroit resident with over 30 years of hospitality and golf course management experience. After attending college at Central Michigan University, Pearsall became the general manager at present day Coach Insignia, or what was then called the Summit. In 1984 Pearsall accepted a position as the General Manager of the Muskegon Country Club, a Donald Ross course, where he sponsored a recruitment initiative that increased membership to 300 members. Through the mid-nineties, Pearsall served as the general manager of Pine River Country Club in Alma, MI where the course hosted record events and was profitable every year of operations. John’s extensive food and beverage experience has lead him to success as a Vice President for Golfler, LLC a Michigan company that his son founded that builds software, POS systems and mobile apps for golf courses. John volunteered as an ambassador at Chandler Park golf course in 2014 and 2015. Past Clients: Muskegon Country Club, Pine River Country Club, Chandler Park
Professional Summary: Eric Goodman has worked as a greenskeeper and/or superintendent for 29 years. In 1987, he was hired to construct new ponds and a drainage system for the Golf Club of Kewadin. Goodman installed a completely new irrigation system at Kewadin before leaving the course in 1992 to attend Rutgers. After completing Rutgers turf management program, Goodman was hired as course supervisor at the exceptional links at the Country Club of Detroit. By 1998, Goodman had become the Assistant Superintendent of the Royal Oak Golf Club where he was responsible repairing the irrigation system and reconstructing bunkers. Between 2006 and 2010, Goodman served two-year tenures at Lochmoore and for the City of Royal Oaks Municipal Courses. Goodman joined Vargo in 2011 where he would serve as the lead superintendent for Bruce Hills Golf Club before taking over Rackham in 2014. Goodman is an 11-year veteran of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America and has also been a member of the local Michigan chapter (MI-GCSA) for seven years. Motown’s lead superintendent, Eric Goodman holds a Category 3A Commercial Pesticide Applicator License.
Motown Golf understands there is a lot more that goes in to creating great golf courses than simply maintaining pristine turf. Golf facilities must have dedicated, professional, and enthusiastic leadership that concentrates on the details of the day-to-day operations, while at the same time focusing on the overall strategic direction and goals of each individual facility.
- Our Vision: To be the driving force in leading Michigan golf and the surrounding communities in their economic and social development.
- Our Mission: To create an unparalleled customer experience by leveraging our experience in the golf and business management industries. Motown Golf Group will harness the true essence of the “Pure Michigan” and package that into a golfing experience that will exceed expectations and remind people of the great state that is Michigan.
- Our Values: Hard work, Perseverance, Integrity, Team Work, Responsibility, Respect
Services Offered: Motown Golf Group manages all aspects of the golf operations including but not limited to: course renovation and capital improvement plans, agronomy, green keeping, clubhouse operations and staffing, marketing, event promotion, budget analysis, accounting, concession and banquet operations, information technology, risk management, legal and corporate governance.