Athlete, 1984 graduate. Susan Roll was a three-sport standout and a three time Nebraska state high school individual gold medal champion in girls golf, Susan led her Chadron High team to four consecutive team championships. In the winter months, she was involved in basketball and garnered All Conference recognition in 1983 and 1984. She competed in track and field during the spring months and was a member of the Class B State Championship track team in 1984.
After high school, she accepted a full ride at the University of Wyoming in golf and in her four years there she picked up All Conference honors in 1987 and 1989. Besides the athletic honors, Susan received the All Conference Academic Achievement Award and was on the Dean’s Honor Roll. She turned professional in 1990 with a rare double certification as a Class A member-in both the PGA and the LPGA. Susan is now the West Coast Equipment Manager of “Golf For Women” magazine. In addition to her sales and marketing responsibilities, she actively participates in the magazine’s nationwide programs and clinics promoting women’s golf and their associated charity events in raising breast cancer awareness.
Co-owner of Carlsbad Golf Center earns LPGA national award for boosting the business
By Gigi Alford UNION-TRIBUNE COMMUNITY SPORTS WRITER November 20, 2005
Susan Roll, co-owner of the Carlsbad Golf Center, pays as much attention to manicured grass and picnic benches as she does to buying new mats and educating her patrons on custom-fit equipment.
Recognized by the LPGA Teaching & Club Professional organization for her devotion to the golf business, Roll was named the National Professional of the Year for 2005.
CARLSBAD GOLF CENTER Web: www.thecarlsbadgolfcenter.com\
The honor is the latest of many, including national finalist for the 2005 PGA Merchandiser of the Year award for public facilities. Also, the Carlsbad Golf Center was voted a Top 25 Shop in the USA by Golf for Women magazine and a Top 100 Range in the USA by Golf Range magazine.
Roll and Dana Chaiken purchased the practice facility and pro shop less than three years ago, fulfilling Roll’s dream to own her own business. “When you get to go to work every day and love what you do, it’s great,” Roll said. “I haven’t worked a day in three years.”
Roll’s staff can sense her enthusiasm. “To come into work is an energy boost every day,” said Kathy Wake, head pro at the golf center.
Wake, president of the LPGA Teaching & Club Professional Western Section, said the Professional of the Year award recognizes the top leader in the LPGA who grows the game at the business level. Wake won Professional of the Year in 1997 but considers Roll to be her mentor.
Roll, 38, began competing in golf tournaments at age 9. Her high school team in Nebraska won the state team competition all four years she played, and she was individual state champion her sophomore, junior and senior years. In 2003, Roll was inducted into the Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame.
At the University of Wyoming, Roll was all-conference four years in a row.
Out of college she toyed with work in every aspect of the game. She coached the women’s team at Regis College in Denver, then worked as a head pro. She also held jobs in marketing, sales, design team and manufacturing.
Roll never toured, however. “I love the business side,” Roll said. “I admire people who go on tour.” Her business stresses customer service and educating buyers in custom-fit equipment, using a launch monitor to determine how to optimize ball flight.
The Carlsbad Golf Center is also active in the community, hosting blood drives and Toys for Tots collections as well as inviting athletes from the Special Olympics and YMCA to use the driving range.
Of the center’s seven golf pros, Roll, Wake and Sheri Hayes are PGA and LPGA members. Even more unusual, Carlsbad golf has a woman grounds superintendent, Robbin Muller.
One of the pros on the Carlsbad staff, Shay Blechynden has given lessons at the range since it opened under different management in 1995. He saw the business change hands several times and said Roll and Chaiken have the best management style. “They believe in quality,” Blechynden said. “When Susan and Dana took over, they restocked with quality merchandise and remodeled the shop. The range-ball quality even improved.”