Golf New Zealand’s Board showed their support with acclamation for Macklin to receive Life Membership during the Golf New Zealand Annual General Meeting (AGM), which district representatives also supported.
Macklin has been involved in golf for almost 60 years and says the Life Membership is one of the highlights of his golfing career to date.
“I have been fortunate to have experienced many wonderful moments in my golfing career, but none was so amazing and significant to me as when Michael Smith, Golf New Zealand Chairman, called my name out as the latest Life Member of the Association at their recent AGM. This is the greatest honour I have been bestowed, and am still processing it!
“I see life membership not only as an honour, but also as a responsibility, and I am looking forward hugely to being able to offer myself in whatever way Golf New Zealand sees fit in the future.
“As I come to the retirement of my golf career, and concluding many cherished years in the Golf New Zealand family, I still feel strongly connected to not only the organisation, but to the game that has been my life.
“Thank you so much to everyone who has helped me along the way, many of whom will know who they are, some of whom will not!”
Macklin has been involved in golf since 1963, the year of Sir Bob Charles’s Open Championship triumph. As the two were passionate about junior golf, they worked closely together in the years that followed.
In 1971, Macklin became a member of the PGA of New Zealand and served as club professional to Mahunga, Masterton and Greenacres Golf Clubs.
However, Macklin had a passion for coaching and education, and in 1987, he was appointed the Executive Director of the AMP Golf New Zealand Foundation. He was instrumental in setting up the funding of this new foundation with all golf club manufacturers contributing a dollar for every golf club sold which secured funding for the early years.
He developed many resources for coaching the game, specialising in the education of volunteer coaches. His enthusiasm was infectious and his presentation style engaging, a skill that made him one of the best educators in the country.
The success of the AMP Golf New Zealand Foundation was recognised worldwide and provided the opportunity for Macklin to work overseas. His passion for youth and coach development was recognised by the PGA of America, Scottish Golf, Singapore Golf and the Netherlands Golf Federation all of whom he was contracted to at some stage during his career. Fortunately, he found his way back to New Zealand.
He then helped establish the golf programme at St Peters School in Cambridge where he was the Golf Director for four years. Following that, Macklin contracted to Golf New Zealand to work on a new joint coach development project between Golf New Zealand Golf and the PGA of New Zealand. While contracted to Golf New Zealand, he drafted a new framework for golf coach development, merging the pathway for all golf coaches in New Zealand and in doing so created a new ‘PGA coach’ category.
The project led to a new online curriculum for golf coach development in New Zealand and allowed the PGA of New Zealand to bring their traineeship programme back ‘in-house’ rather than outsourcing coach education to the Australian PGA, as it had been doing for nearly 20 years.
With the content created, Macklin then took up a support role with the PGA of New Zealand to assist with the integration of the content to the online world, and to support the initial delivery of this new approach to coach education.
Macklin then came back to Golf New Zealand in 2018 to take up his most recent position as the Coach Development Officer, leading the development of an industry-wide education platform called ‘Golf Tutor’.
Macklin has been a long-serving contributor to the game making him a well-deserved recipient of Life Membership.