Women in Golf: My PerspectiveReturn to Insights
By Sarah Gwynn, LANDMARK Head of Media & Communications
Working in golf has given me more than I ever could have imagined when I was beginning my career.
More travel and opportunity to see the world; more friendships with the many great people I’ve met along the way; and more pride and satisfaction from being involved in sport and influencing how it is communicated.
It’s changed a lot since the early days when I was the first female press officer for the DP World Tour and people would ask whose girlfriend I was at tournaments.
Being part of the R&A’s Women in Golf Leadership Programme in 2021/22 showed me how many brilliant women there are making a difference in this great game. And how willing they are to support, encourage and champion each other.
As well as learning a huge amount about myself and the way I and others work, it gave me the opportunity to expand my network and form strong bonds with the other members of my project team. I can’t wait to see them in St Andrews in a few weeks’ time for the Rise and Aspire event.
I didn’t have a huge amount to do with the women’s side of the game until I moved to IMG in 2019 and was involved with the AIG Women’s Open and Solheim Cup.
That coincided with a boom for women’s sport in general; the 90,000 fans who watched the action at Gleneagles made it the most-attended women’s golf event in the UK to date, joining successes for football, cricket and rugby.
Being part of big events like that is in my blood, but I’ve been fortunate to work on another side of the game with LANDMARK.
I knew as soon as I spoke to Gary Firkins and the team and looked at some of LANDMARK’s work with Syngenta – such as the report Can the rise of women’s sport grow golf participation – that it was going to be a fascinating challenge.
Working on Syngenta’s Growing Golf campaign has been brilliant. The people involved genuinely care about diversifying the game and truly believe it can be a sport that positively impacts people and the planet.
I’ve met some wonderful, inspiring people over the last three years and have loved telling their stories.
The partnership between love.golf and the Muslim Golf Association in particular has been eye-opening and shows just what can happen when underrepresented demographics are welcomed into the game.
Being able to do that in person now – as opposed to online during the pandemic – makes it even better, and by the time you read this I’ll be at Finca Cortesin for the Solheim Cup 2023, creating content with the volunteer greenkeeping team, which Syngenta is sponsoring.
Sport – playing and working in it – has given me so much and has shaped my life. It is such an amazingly powerful platform for promoting equality.
I’ve got two young daughters now and I want them to grow up believing they can do or play whatever they want, without any barriers or judgements.
If I can play a small part in helping golf be seen as a sport for everyone, I’ll be happy.