Courtney Campbell-Leveck is one of a kind. Well, one of 8 of a kind in BC. That's the number of women who are working as head golf professionals at golf clubs in BC. It's one of the most sought-after positions in Canada's Professional Golf Association (PGA). From one coast of this country to another, there are only 785 head golf professionals. And only 35 of them are female. “It's pretty empowering,” says Campbell-Leveck.
It wasn't easy to become a golf professional. In order to obtain her Class A, the highest designation possible in the PGA of Canada, Campbell-Leveck had to take a series of courses, exams and a playing ability test. She had to play two rounds of golf, in one day and score under 80 each time. She greatly enjoys her work teaching, saying, “I love taking somebody who is maybe brand new to the game and helping them improve their swing, and the positive feedback makes me very excited.” She adds that she's found a lot of joy interacting with all the locals from the community. “Squamish is a very friendly and genuine community to live in. The course itself is called “a hidden gem,” but it should really be more known, it's such a beautiful place to be. So we're really trying to promote that.”
Despite all this success, there have still been struggles. Campbell-Leveck's work has taken her to courses where she is often the only woman employed on the professional staff. “It's tough; you're coming into a male-dominated sport... Even 10 years ago, there were limits on times [at certain courses] when women could play golf, or women weren't allowed at all on certain days. I credit Scott Wengi, the General Manager of Squamish Valley Golf Club for taking a chance on me. For the majority of my career, I was blessed with bosses who encouraged me to speak out and to be considered equal, but sometimes I wasn't.”
The tides are turning, however, and Campbell-Leveck is proud to be a part of it. And when it came time to make her first hire, Campbell-Leveck knew exactly what to do: “I hired a female assistant. Her name is Cari Chow. She's very passionate about the game and a good player. So that's really nice.”
If you're interested in finding out more about golfing and lessons (or maybe just want to say hi to Courtney!) head to the Squamish Valley Golf Club's website.