Rich BallingerRich Ballinger, PGA, MBA

The Sam Houston State University PGA Golf Management Program is supervised by the Director, Rich Ballinger.  Rich is a PGA Master Professional and has served as the Director of the program since inception in February of 2005.  Rich is a 1994 graduate of the Ferris State University PGA Golf Management program, where he earned a B.S. in Marketing with a Minor in Professional Golf Management.  Rich also earned a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Sam Houston State University in 2008 and is currently a doctoral student in Educational Leadership within the College of Education at SHSU.  For almost 2 years, prior to employment at Sam Houston State University, Rich was the Internship Director for the Coastal Carolina University PGA Golf Management program.  Before his tenure at Coastal Carolina University, Rich worked for the Glens Group in South Carolina for 9 years where he was charged with opening two facilities while serving as the Head Golf Professional.     

PGA Education

  • Class "A" PGA of America Professional - 1996
  • PGA Certified Professional - General Management - 2010
  • PGA Certified Professional - Golf Operations - 2011
  • PGA Master Professional - General Management - 2011

PGA Committees and Task Forces

  • PGA of America National Apprentice Task Force - 2006-2008
  • PGA of America National PGA/PGM Task Force - 2008-2010
  • PGA of America's University Accreditation and Evaluation Team - 2008-2013
  • Secretary of PGA Golf Management Education Association - 2010-2011
  • Southern Texas PGA Golf 2.0 Committee - 2010-2012
  • President of PGA Golf Management Education Association - 2012-2013
  • Southern Texas PGA Employment Committee Chair - 2012 - 2014
  • PGA of America Adjunct Faculty Member - PGA Master Professional Program - 2012-present
  • PGA Subject Matter Expert, Business Planning - 2010 - present
  • PGA National Employment Committee - 2015 - present
  • Southern Texas PGA Education & Employment Committee Chair - 2015 - present
  • Southern Texas PGA Awards Committee - 2015

Honors and Awards

  • Three time winner of the Southern Texas PGA Horton Smith Award for outstanding contributions to golf professional education - 2008, 2012 and 2014
  • Finalist, PGA National Horton Smith Award for contributions to PGA education - 2015

Box 2056
Huntsville, TX 77341-2056
(936) 294-4810

Sarah St. John

Sarah St. John, PGA

Sarah is a Class A PGA Professional and a graduate of the Sam Houston State University PGA Golf Management program, where she earned a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration with a Concentration in PGA Golf Management. An avid golfer since age 4, Sarah has a passion for playing and teaching the game of golf. Upon graduation from SHSU, Sarah worked as an Assistant Golf Professional at the Club at Carlton Woods, where she was the Lead Professional in charge of the Women's Golf Association. Most recently, Sarah was the lead Golf Instructor at Topgolf- Houston North.

Box 2056

Huntsville, TX 77341-2056

(936) 294-4812


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Kristi Gilliland

Kristi Gilliland

Kristi is a proud Sam Houston State alumna, and has been employed with the College of Business Administration since 2009. Kristi was previously an Administrative Assistant within the Department of General Business and Finance before joining the PGA Golf Management program in 2012.

Box 2056
Huntsville, TX 77341-2056
(936) 294-4810


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