In the early 1990s, newly built Highland Springs Country Club played host to the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper. One of the golfers chasing PGA TOUR dreams would years later become a fixture at the course.
Brian Maloney was working as a Club Professional, one of three national Titleist-PGA Club fitting instructors, and had qualified for three Ben Hogan Tour events. It’s now the Korn Ferry Tour.
“While playing there, I fell in love with Highland Springs and dreamed about someday being the Director of Golf at such a wonderful club,” Maloney said.
That dream soon became a reality. Maloney served as Highland Springs’ Director of Golf from 1994 to 2023, which is why the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame proudly inducted him with the Class of 2023.
It was a role that fit him like a glove, and furthered the love of the game, both for him and many others.
“My goal as a golf professional was to provide golfers with the finest in all phases of the golf business,” Maloney said. “To achieve this, I was dedicated to continuing education and personal development so that I might help golfers of all ages enjoy this great game that I have chosen as my profession.”
That meant attending education programs geared toward excellent customer service, club fitting, computers in the golf shop, stress management, CPR, junior programs, golf car fleet management, teaching, the short game, teaching aids, professional scoreboards, improving performance under pressure, club repair, job search and resume development, merchandising, problem solving, golf operations, professional golf management, professional golf marketing and professional leadership.
Maloney took up golf in his home state of New York.
“When I was 17 years old, I began working at a busy golf driving range and miniature golf course,” said Maloney, who was hired to pick up golf balls but soon moved into the pro shop. “It was there that I realized that I loved the golf business. If I couldn’t play professionally, I was going to pursue a career as a PGA Club Professional. This included all aspects of professional golf operations, including but not limited to running a pro shop merchandise business, tournament operations, teaching, club fitting and more.”
He made his way to Park University in Kansas City, becoming the school’s first All-American in any sport. In 2018, he was enshrined on the Park University Wall of Honor.
After graduating, he worked at Timber Trails Golf Club near Chicago, Pertle Springs Keth Memorial Golf Course in Warrensburg, Mo., and eventually for The Country Club of Blue Springs before heading to Highland Springs.
Along the way, he rose to become president of the Midwest Section PGA and became certified custom club fitter with Titleist, Callaway, Cobra and Ping.
He was elected to the Midwest Section PGA Hall of Fame in 2014. He won numerous awards, including Midwest Section PGA Club Fitter of The Year four times (1997, 2000, 2006, 2016), the Merchandiser of the Year twice (2001, 2012) and the Player of the Year in 1994. He was named Golf Digest’s Best Teachers in the state in 2000 and 2001.
He also was a club fitting instructor for Titleist, traveling the country teaching PGA professionals and assistant professionals about fitting clubs with the Titleist system.
In the Midwest Section and the PGA of America, his service included time as chairman of the Tom Watson’s Clubs for Kids, as well as serving on committees for national education, tournaments, planning & long-range business, seniors, national PGA employment and club relations. He also was a non-playing rules official and AJGA volunteer rules official and event volunteer.
Maloney annually organized the MSHOF’s High School Golf Clinic presented by Ozarks Coca-Cola/Dr Pepper, and coordinated the Price Cutter’s annual Michele Kiser Women’s Golf Clinic presented by Advertising Plus.
Over the years he was a six-time qualifier for the PGA National Club Professional Championship, two-time qualifier for the PGA National Senior Professional Championship, and won numerous professional tournaments – including in 2023.
Fortunately, his wife of 41 years, Chris, and their daughter Krysten and son Dillon were supportive of his unique work schedule.
“My accomplishments in the world of golf in Missouri came from my dedication to grow the game of golf, my personal work ethic, and my desire to deliver exceptional service to those who would trust me in positions of leadership,” Maloney said. “I am greatly humbled, and honored, that somebody, actually anybody, feels that I belong in the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.”