The Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G wouldn’t be possible without the wonderful group of volunteers who commit themselves to making the tournament one of the best stops on the LPGA tour. Each month, we’ll be highlighting a different volunteer chairman for a behind the scenes look at what it takes to run a world-class golf event, as well as get to know some of the hardworking volunteers who return year after year to the #NWAChampionship!
Sandy Ensinger oversees the tournament’s largest committee, Marshals. Marshals are stationed throughout the course to ensure fair play among all participants, as well as safety for spectators. As a tournament chairman since the first Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G, Sandy knows the course better than most and his attention to detail is not only impressive but crucial to his role. He’s no stranger to volunteering and has volunteered at many tournaments in the past—he’s even considering volunteering for the LPGA’s newest tournament in January down in Ocala, Florida. Sandy loves golf and is a great chairman. We’re very lucky to have him.
Sandy Ensinger, Marshal Committee ChairmanHow long have you been volunteering and how did you get started?
When I moved to Northwest Arkansas eight years ago, I was excited to learn of the LPGA event scheduled at Pinnacle for the first time. I have been volunteering at this event since its inception as Chairman of the Marshals.
Tell us about your committee and what your role is.
I've worked scoring, security and marshaling in the past 20 plus years at both men’s, ladies and seniors tournaments, and without a doubt I find Chairman of the Marshals to be my most challenging assignment at a tournament. Finding 18 good people to be hole captains is always the most important part of putting together a well working unit. We now have captains in place who have worked the tournament for several years and are able to recruit volunteers who return year after year. Paul Cannon and Scott Turner are the back and front coordinators who patrol their sides of the course, and are always ready to answer questions and address any issues a marshal may have.
What do you think is most surprising or unexpected about putting on a golf tournament of this magnitude?
My most unexpected or surprising event at this tournament would probably be the entire 2007 event. I have never seen so much rain in one week in my entire life.
What is your favorite part about tournament week?
My favorite part of the week is arriving early every day, getting the radios ready, answering any marshal’s questions and seeing everything coming together as it should. Suddenly it's 7:30 a.m. and everyone is in place, and the players are out and beginning play.
Do you have any favorite memories from over the years?
My memories of the tournament range from our early captains meeting, trying to get lunches out to volunteers, or helping Morgan Pressel get a splinter out of her finger at the 16th hole. I won't mention the flooding the first year!
If you could do any other volunteer position, what would it be?
If I could work any other position at the tournament it would come down to doing a job where I could see people working together and having a good golfing experience……MARSHALING !