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Wakonda Club | Des Moines, Iowa
General Manager/COO

About the Club

Wakonda is a private, member-owned country club set on 130 acres just minutes from downtown Des Moines. Founded in 1922, the Club features 360-degree views of its award-winning 18-hole golf course and scenic downtown skyline framed by Wakonda Club’s 1,500 trees. Since 2013, Wakonda Club has been the host facility of the PGA Champions’ TOUR Principal Charity Classic; in 2016 it was named the TOUR’s “Tournament of the Year.” Wakonda Club has hosted numerous events including several USGA Championships and is roundly considered to be Iowa’s most prestigious golf club.

Over the past twenty years, Wakonda is proud to have been ranked within the top three golf courses in the state of Iowa. The William Langford-designed par 72 golf course measures 6,959 yards and hosts approximately 20,000 rounds annually. The Club’s indoor winter driving range has four heated hitting bays to allow for year-round instruction and usage. Other golf amenities include: an extensive practice facility with driving range, short game facility, and a member-owned pro shop. In recent years, the Club re-grassed all the greens, fairways, and surrounds, and in 2012 completed a bunker renovation. Additional Club programming and amenities include: five clay tennis courts and two omni courts; three separate pools located in one aquatics area; junior programming in golf, swimming, synchronized swimming and tennis; a professional-owned tennis shop; adult clinics and private lessons in golf and tennis; and multiple dining outlets. The Club has 745 members of which 360 have full membership privileges.

The Club’s 34,000 square foot clubhouse is open Tuesday through Sunday and features event space for up to 300 guests. In 2016, the Club completed a renovation of the main lobby, Terrace Grill, and aesthetics in the Oak View Bar. Renovations scheduled for 2018 include new carpeting, chairs, and wall coverings for the banquet rooms. Gross revenues are $6.5 million; annual food and beverage sales are $2.7 million. The Club employs 70 employees year-round; during the height of the season, there are 178 employees.

About the Position

The General Manager and COO is responsible for all aspects of club operations, reporting to the Club President and to the 9-person Board of Directors. He/she will hire, develop and lead all staff including the Assistant General Manager, Business Manager and CFO, Director of Engineering, Director of Events, Director of Golf, Director of Membership, Director of Tennis, and Golf Course Superintendent.

Development of excellent collaborative relationships with the President, the Board of Directors and Committees along with staff reports is an expectation. The new General Manager and COO will develop a sound business strategy with the Board of Directors and will direct the execution of the Club’s annual business plan. The General Manager and COO will assist the Board with the strategic vision of the Club and will align that vision with the operations and programming of the Club. A successful candidate will create and maintain exacting standards to enhance Wakonda Club’s reputation within the membership and outside the Club. The General Manager is expected to be highly engaging with the membership and staff and be recognized as the front facing leader of the entire operation. The new General Manager will be a strong and personable leader who will assemble, develop, and coach a team to execute world class member experiences by applying critical thinking and thoughtful review of the Club’s operations to meet and/or exceed the memberships’ expectations.

Compensation: The Club will offer a competitive compensation plan, along with standard benefits.

 About the Ideal Candidate

Candidates should have a minimum of seven to ten years of progressively more responsible club management positions leading up to a General Manager or General Manager and COO position with a club of similar size, scope of services, and culture as Wakonda Club.

A college graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Hospitality Management or equivalent is preferred. Possessing either or both the CCM and CCE certifications, or similar professional development achievements, is highly desired.

Apply for This Position

Interested candidates should complete the Club Management Candidate Profile Form and submit a compelling cover letter and resume for consideration. For further assistance or to recommend a candidate, please contact Kirk Reese at 310-991-9768 / Kirk@denehyctp.com.

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