Conradie takes helm at SAGA

Gerhard Conradie was appointed as the new president of the South African Golf Association (SAGA) at the Association’s Annual General Meeting held at Westlake Golf Club in Cape Town on Tuesday.

Current incumbent, Andre Pieterse, will hand over to Conradie at the conclusion of the South African Inter-Provincial, sponsored by Tempest, today.

Conradie from Boland will serve two years in terms of the SAGA Constitution.

The outgoing president said he leaves the SAGA in experienced hands.

“Gerhard has served on the SAGA Executive Committee for 11 years,” Pieterse said.

“Having served two years as the second vice president and two as senior vice president, he has displayed a passion for the organisation and proven himself as an experienced administrator.

“I wish Gerhard well for the term of his presidency.”

Conradie said it was an honour to be elected and he is looking forward to take over the mantle.

“I have moved through the ranks and served at various levels in many sports, but my passion for the game and the administration thereof has brought me to this level,” Conradie said.

An avid rugby and cricket player at school and club level, Conradie began his administrative journey as the President of both the Hermanus Rugby and Cricket Committees in 1984 and was instrumental in establishing the Overberg and Walker Bay Rugby Clubs for all communities in 1985.

In addition to having been involved in the administration of the sport at national level since his selection as second vice president to the SAGA executive in 2010, Conradie also served in several positions at provincial level, including his presidency of Boland Golf Union.

Conradie was selected to the Boland Golf Union Executive in 1997, where he served as chairman on various sub-committees and wrote the Boland Golf Union Constitution. In 2001, Conradie was elected as vice-president and president in 2002.

Although he stood down in 2011, Conradie remained on Boland Golf Union Executive in charge of Transformation, Development and Finance sub-committees.

Conradie was elected to the SAGA Executive in 2003. He served as the chairman of the Junior Golf and Finance Sub-committees, and during his tenure, re-wrote the South African Golf Association Constitution and was instrumental in the implementation of the National Computerised Handicapping System.

In terms of challenges that lie ahead, Conradie intends to focus on growing the game through restructuring the organisation to encompass all facets of amateur golf and improving communication with stakeholders in the sport.

“We have progressed a long way in bringing all the facets of amateur golf under the auspices of SAGA, however there is still a lot of work to be done,” Conradie said.

“I would like to see us work more closely with clubs and the provincial unions to grow the number of participants, particularly amongst the younger players.

“Like my predecessor, golf development will be a major focus in my term. We will establish a sustainable Elite Squad system from the under-16 pool to encourage our top amateurs to remain on the amateur circuit for as long as possible.

“We lose too many of our emerging stars to the lure of the professional game before they are ready.”

The other positions filled during the Annual General Meeting included the election of the senior vice president and second vice president.

Geoff Taylor from Western Province, who has served as second vice president, will step into the role of senior vice president, while Naadir Agherdien, the president of Western Province Golf Union, was elected as second vice president.

Conradie welcomed Taylor’s promotion and the appointment of Agherdien.

“I feel very positive about the future of SAGA with a strong team on the Executive, who share my vision for strategic development of the association.”

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.

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