TPC Deere Run Loses Stuedemann Post-Season | Golf

Alex Stuedemann shed blood and sweat to make TPC Deere Run Golf Course one of the best air-conditioned courses in the Quad-Cities area as well as the PGA Tour.

This includes overseeing the facility’s $1.8 million renovation that began last fall and is putting the finishing touches on it this spring.

After 14 years across two stints in his adopted home, the Minnesota native will soon be eyeing an opportunity to make an even bigger impact on professional golf across the continent. The 44-year-old is spending his final summer at Deere Run this year before moving on to what he hopes will be greener pastures by becoming director of TPC Agronomy for the PGA Tour.

“My wife jokes that I’m married to two people for nine months out of the year,” Stuedemann said, noting all the support he gets from Erin during a busy schedule. “She is a teacher and has free time during the summer months when I finish. I’m going to travel quite a bit, but it might give me a little more predictability in my schedule, and it can do a lot on a personal level.

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Stuedemann will continue to get his hands dirty and be involved in turf and golf courses – including his beloved Deere Run. Now, however, he will spread his expertise through the TPC network and other courses that host PGA Tour events.

“Basically what I will be doing is supporting the PGA Tour venues, primarily the TPCs – not only in the operation and support of their tournaments, but also in operational excellence,” Stuedemann said. “…I will be able to offer advice from my years of experience in the industry while adhering to PGA Tour standards and working with our vast and talented network of rules officials, construction and architectural experts and directors of members.”

Stuedemann said this opportunity was created through his 22 years of networking within the PGA Tour and the TPC course network here in San Antonio and Minneapolis.

And his work speaks for itself. Deere Run garners rave reviews from Tour staff and players alike when they come to town each summer.

“He was never satisfied with the status quo,” said Todd Hajduk, general manager of TPC Deere Run. “If he could improve something, he would ask me, ‘How can we find the money to do something?’ He wanted to do his best. Not only was he good at identifying things that needed to be done, he was good at solving them.

He’s also brought stability, holding No. 1 in agronomy at Deere Run for the past 14 years since taking over from Paul Grogan.

“To be honest, I’m glad we kept it as long as we did,” Hajduk said. “These conversations started three years ago. You could see him coming in with several of the top brass (within the TPC agronomy staff) all at retirement age and we were going to lose one, two, three guys at the same time.

Hajduk said Stuedemann ticked all the boxes for the Tour job.

“Alex is not only a good agronomist, but he is very articulate, he likes to be engaging,” Hajduk said. “A lot of agronomists will balk at that – they’re just like ‘Let me grow my weed, leave me alone, I don’t want to talk to anyone.’ Alex is so much more…. He’s at the top of his game.

Never one to sit back and relax, Stuedemann says this new position allows him “to bring agronomy to a wider audience than what I was doing here at Deere Run.”

He wasn’t sure if any of his assistant superintendents at Deere Run — Andy Cooper and Jarrett Chapman, who both rose through the ranks internally at the Silvis facility — would be in line to take over. He and Hajduk said potential replacements are being vetted.

“Hopefully we have a replacement in mind for the John Deere Classic so they can experience it with a bit of nearby assistance,” Stuedemann said. “It’s a great position, but we also want to make sure this person is a good fit for Deere Run and the community and all that this facility means for the Quad-Cities, John Deere, the tournament and the PGA Tour.”

Stuedemann admitted the decision to leave what he called his ‘Deere Run family’ left him torn – knowing it was a great career move, but also knowing it would remove him from the establishment where ties are deep throughout the organization.

“It was certainly not taken lightly,” he said, noting that he and his family will remain based here. “I love the daily work at Deere Run. We have such a fantastic team, not just in agronomy – my assistant Andy and Jarret and the whole team. You look forward to work, but you look forward to people more.

“Step up and step away from that is definitely tough. But to be able to stay connected through that role and be that Deere Run cheerleader on a different stage and still call those people my friends and share a holiday meal with them and all that – it helped the decision not be so difficult.

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