Derek Sprague: Meet the new PGA president

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PGA CEO Pete Bevacqua, PGA Vice President Derek Sprague, PGA President Ted Bishop, and PGA Secretary Paul Levy at the 40th Ryder Cup at Gleneagles, on Sept. 26, 2014. (Photo by Montana Pritchard/The PGA of America via Getty Images Europe)

The man who replaces Ted Bishop at the helm of the PGA of America is the general manager and director of golf at Malone (N.Y.) Golf Club. Derek Sprague has taken the usual route to the PGA presidency, having served as PGA Secretary, then PGA Vice President before being appointed as Interim President on Oct. 24.

Sprague began service on the Northeastern New York PGA Board of Directors in 1998, and served as section president from 2003-2004. He also was a member of the section’s employment committee from 1995-2001.

Sprague turned professional in 1989. The Malone native began his career at Malone Golf Club. He was elected to PGA membership in 1993.

He was named the 2005 and 2008 Northeastern New York PGA Golf Professional of the Year. Sprague is also a four-time (2000-03) Section Bill Strausbaugh Award recipient; a two-time Section Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities (1998-99); and winner of the 2006 Section President’s Plaque for outstanding contributions to player development.

Sprague is a 1988 graduate of James Madison University, where he competed on the golf team and earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Marketing. He and his wife, Jennifer, live in Malone, and are parents of a daughter, Alexandra; and a son, Davis.

His tenure as PGA president will coincide with the organization's 100th anniversary in 2016, the re-introduction of golf to the Olympics in 2016, and the 2016 Ryder Cup, which will be held at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.