Marc Simon ’94, vice president of PGA Golf Exhibitions.
Here’s just a quick “by the numbers” of this year’s PGA Show, held annually each January at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
31,000 golf industry professionals
1,000+ exhibiting brands
10 miles of show aisles
89 countries and all 50 U.S. states represented
Managing the entire event for the 10th year — and celebrating his 25th with the show — was Marc Simon ’94, vice president of PGA Golf Exhibitions.

The PGA Show began in the trunks of cars during a 1954 golf tournament and has grown into golf’s longest running and largest global business gathering, drawing PGA professionals along with golf’s top buyers, brands, and media. Under Simon’s leadership, the PGA Show was twice awarded the prestigious Gold 100 “Greatest Show” designation by Trade Show Executive Magazine.

A top local amateur who grew up in Clinton (the son of Joy and Bob Simon, longtime professor of philosophy and golf coach), Marc Simon was a standout player on Hamilton’s golf team, earning Academic All-America Honors and receiving the Riffle Award as the top senior athlete. After a few years as Hamilton’s sports information director, and then some time at George Little Management, he joined the PGA Show team in 1999.

We asked him a few questions about this year’s event.  Here’s what he had to say:

You’ve been involved with PGA events for so long. What is it that keeps you motivated and excited year after year? 

Working in an industry you are passionate about always keeps things motivating and exciting. The show is so instrumental in driving the business of golf in the year ahead that our entire team is committed to doing everything we can to help the industry grow and prosper. Plus, we really need to keep the show continually innovative, fresh, and with new features and experiences to keep our exhibitors, attendees, and reporting media coming back year after year.

Managing a huge event like this must have so many moving parts. How do you coordinate it all and still maintain your sanity?

You definitely need a strong team to put together an event like this, and I am so fortunate to work with an amazing group of people that I can count on at all times (and who really do the majority of the heavy lifting). In fact, Greg Scott [’14], who was a star golf team member at Hamilton, has been our director of sales since 2019, and this was his fifth PGA Show! My dad always told me when Greg was on the team that we should hire him, and we were finally able to convince him to come on board after we reconnected at my 25th and his fifth Hamilton reunion in 2019.

It’s so great how you were able to find a career associated with the sport you were passionate about. Are you still finding time to golf? 

When you work in the golf industry, it’s also important to play, so between occasional networking events and customer meetings on the golf course, playing with some of my kids who are fortunately into the game, a convenient local par 3 course that is easy to get to, and participating in a few competitive golf tournaments every year — yeah, I guess I still get to play a decent amount all things considered.

Meet people taking Hamilton’s motto to heart as they discover and explore their passions in an effort to make valuable contributions on College Hill and beyond.

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Thinking back, how is what you’re able to accomplish today influenced by your experience as a student at Hamilton?

The Hamilton education and experience thoroughly prepared me for a role in the events industry. Learning how to think critically, having extensive training in public speaking, and most importantly, learning to listen well, have been essential in my work on the PGA Show. Not only do you have to regularly make quick decisions, carefully weighing all of the info you have at the time, but being able to clearly articulate your thoughts and opinions is of paramount importance in my current role. In addition, playing on the golf team at Hamilton, which was a fall and spring sport, forced you to be able multi-task, stay organized, lead by example, and have a really strong work ethic, while still leaning on and relying on your teammates for support — all things that have served me well throughout my entire 25 years working on the PGA Show.

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