The GCMA 2017 Conference takes place from 12-14 November. We’re looking at the various breakout sessions that will take place over the conference:
Just a minute – current issues in golf course agronomy and ecology
Paul Woodham & Sophie Vukelic | STRI
Monday 13 November session 3c: 15:30-16:15
As a nod to Radio 4’s eponymous game show, Paul and Sophie will be challenging each other to offer clear, concise answers to a range of commonly experienced golf course management problems, without hesitation, repetition or deviation. The STRI Group experts will cover as many topics as possible during this entertaining and informative session, including green speeds, tree management, bunkers, the rough – including ecology and speed of play, green renovations, and future concerns. Come and watch as agronomist and ecologist go head-to-head during their Minute Waltz, and play along by posing tricky questions from the floor.
Paul has been working with the STRI Group since 2010 as Turfgrass Agronomist, having spent more than 20 years working in greenkeeping and as Course Manager. Paul has a range of academic qualifications including a first-class honours degree in Turfgrass Science, which included a comprehensive study of greens performance vs. player feedback. He has also gathered numerous industry specific credentials, such as machinery maintenance and use, in addition to irrigation maintenance and management. Paul has worked as part of the STRI team providing specialist consultancy support for The Open and Amateur championships, as well as tournament support for other high-profile sports events including the London 2012 Olympics. Paul is an experienced speaker at local, national and international events, and writes articles for a variety of industry specific publications.
After studying Ecology and Environmental Biology at the University of Leeds and the University of Newcastle (Australia), Sophie graduated with a BSc Hons and joined STRI Group as an Ecological Consultant. Sophie currently works with numerous golf clubs in the UK, providing ecological surveys and management plans for a myriad of habitat types. Sophie is a recognised bat consultant, she has a tree climbing license which enables her to conduct tree top surveys, and recently, Sophie was awarded a drone pilots license to facilitate environmental surveying. Sophie works exclusively within the golf sector, collaborating with leading industry architects and consultants to provide specialist knowledge of the natural environment within the business of golf. Sophie is currently working towards gaining European protected species licenses.
By Mike Hyde