Lots of Praise to Go Around with the OGA Facility of the Year Award


A View from the Back Office…

Since becoming involved in the digital communications for the club, I have had the pleasure of seeing things from both perspectives, as a member of SHCC, and someone who interacts with membership, staff and management almost daily.  It has brought a new appreciation for the incredible effort, amazing talent and dedication that come from staff and some very dedicated volunteers.

It was my pleasure to put together the submission information for the OGA Award. But I have to confess, the dialogue almost wrote itself. When compared to almost every other club of the more than 400 public and private facilities in Oregon and SW Washington that comprise the OGA, Shadow Hills Country Club’s recent accomplishments stand out both in our exceptional facility improvements, but also in the success we have achieved in so many areas, while other facilities are struggling.

There are many reasons.

As one of the “mass migration of 2009” from Springfield CC, the differences were immediately evident. Shadow Hills CC is a welcoming, golf-centric place that is both professional and fun, in almost every aspect of the operation.

In addition to wonderful, low-key members who are a true community, we have been blessed with a great number of the “right people at the right time” who have stepped up to make the improvements that now mark the “New Shadow Hills Country Club” for anyone who hasn’t visited since our 2012 “rebirth.”

The volunteers who served on the Building Committee (two of whom are retiring from the board this term), were integral to planning, getting consensus from the membership, and then making sure that plans stayed within budget and time-tables.  Several past members of the board from this period of time were integral in planning, negotiating and acquiring financing that was exceptionally favorable. And at every turn, the building committee and board saw ways to improve upon the original plans, in ways that have made this facility one of the most unique, functional and profitable of its kind.

Goals were set. Plans were executed. Budgets and timetables were met. All of this is an amazing accomplishment in itself in this day and age. But, it didn’t end there.

So many other facilities have had a “hard-sell” to membership to make the kinds of sweeping changes that we have seen, and the result was often a huge loss of members, from which many clubs have never totally recovered during the economic downturn.

This was not the case with Shadow Hills. Once the club opened, the changes and improvements began bearing fruit. We have seen such marked increases in membership, operational profit, and economy of scale in improved cost efficiency, that the results would seem impossible over an economic period that has ravaged the golf industry as a whole.

It would seem even more impossible to accomplish the basic plans, while actually expanding and improving them to a degree that makes our facility unique and amazing in almost every facet.

And again, it is the volunteers and staff that have made the incredible difference here.

I have been behind the scenes now for one of the busiest Golf Seasons in recent history. In almost every case, success after success was reported, due to unbelievably long hours put in by every manager (often exceeding 60 hour weeks), with help from one of the best staffs we have seen in our history.  The list of accomplishments is long…the list of improvements even longer, and at each turn, it is the people behind the scenes that make the difference in the tremendous improvement and successes we have experienced in the past three years.

Is there still room for improvement? Of course.  Are there adjustments that need to be made as our membership reaches capacity along with the number of outside events filling the calendar? Absolutely.

However, these are the kinds of “problems” that almost every other Golf Facility in the Northwest would love to have.

I have witnessed first-hand, the infamous 90/10 rule from which almost every service organization suffers. 10% of the people do the work for 90% of those who enjoy their labors. 90% of those who participate in events are happy and appreciative, while 10% (or less) will be the “constant voice of dissatisfaction.” But it doesn’t have to be that way.

I would ask the 90% who appreciate the hard work that goes into every event, every round of golf, and every social and dining event, to take the time to personally thank those who are serving you or organizing behind the scenes.  I would also ask the 90% to consider becoming one of the 10% who actively participate on the board, committees, and work crews that stage these events. And finally, I would ask those who seem to look for minor fault (some would euphemistically call it “striving for perfection”) to keep perspective in what this club has been able to accomplish, in a time when so many others are struggling.

Come to the Annual Meeting Thursday night at 7PM, and hear for yourself the long list of improvements and increased efficiencies that have been reached. Vote for a board member that you feel will continue to help guide us to even more improvements and efficiencies. And finally, take part in the celebration of a country club that is unique in the areas that set us apart from every other facility in the state, and beyond.

We are unique, both in the makeup of our members as well as the efficiency and professionalism of our staff. I truly believe the final words of the application statement I wrote…

Tradition, Community, and Service…the benchmarks of a great country club, are alive at Shadow Hills Country Club.


My sincere thanks and gratitude to the Management, Staff, Board and Volunteer Members of Shadow Hills Country Club. It is an honor and a privilege to be a part of this amazing team.

Patric Miller
for Shadow Hills Extra



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One response to “Lots of Praise to Go Around with the OGA Facility of the Year Award”

  1. Susan Gilmore says :

    Nice work, Patric. skg


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