The next occupant of the White House and the new makeup of the Senate and House won’t be decided until this evening, but the change in leadership of the PGA Tour was announced last night when the Tour Policy Board unanimously approved Jay Monahan as its next Commissioner, to succeed Tim Finchem who will retire at the end of this year.
The announcement was hardly a surprise as Finchem’s retirement had been speculated for months and Monahan was the clear heir apparent, having been named Deputy Commissioner two years ago and COO earlier this year.
Finchem has been Commissioner since 1994, a Tiger Woods era tenure during which Tour purses have jumped from $56 million to over $300 million. His legacy also includes the creation of the Presidents Cup and Fedex Cup playoffs and the return of golf to the Olympics, while his strongest personal commitment may have been to the World Golf Foundation’s First Tee initiative.
46-year-old Jay Monahan, who becomes just the fourth Commissioner in Tour history (before Finchem were Joe Dey and Deane Beman), joined the Tour in 2008 as director of the Players Championship. A native of Belmont, MA, he played collegiate golf at Trinity College where he was named a Division II Academic All-American.