Associations and Events

Green Start Academy Announces 2021 Dates, Unveils New Location

Green Start Academy

For the first time ever, Green Start Academy (GSA) is moving to a new location for 2021, Pinehurst Resort, as it welcomes a new class of assistant golf course superintendents. The annual event, hosted by John Deere, Bayer, and, new for 2021, Rain Bird, will welcome the best and brightest of the golf industry for a three-day education session from November 15-17, 2021, at one of the most notable golf courses in the United States. Attendees will be able to apply for one of the coveted spots from July 1 through August 1, 2021.

“We are excited to continue the tradition of Green Start Academy, bringing assistant golf course superintendents from all over North America together for three days of education, professional development, and networking,” said Manny Gan, global director of golf, John Deere. “One of the things that makes Green Start Academy special is the unique opportunity we have to connect attendees the top leaders in the golf industry. We are excited to further enhance this experience by bringing our participants to one of the best courses in the United States, Pinehurst.”

With the move, attendees can also expect some exciting, new changes to the agenda. While GSA will continue to feature educational sessions from top industry experts and breakout sessions with industry leaders, the 2021 event will place even more emphasis on mentorship and networking. Additionally, due to the new location, attendees can expect additional new events to be added to the 2021 agenda.

Also new for 2021, GSA will welcome a third host to the mix, Rain Bird. The global manufacturer and provider of irrigation products and services will join John Deere and Bayer for the first time, adding another layer of industry expertise to the event.

“This industry is built on relationships, and Green Start Academy provides the perfect platform for attendees – as well as the mentors and hosts– to support the next generation of this industry,” said Jeffrey Lawson, national sales manager, Rainbird. “We are excited to join John Deere and Bayer for this year’s event and look forward to meeting the 2021 class in North Carolina.” 

Green Start Academy was established in 2006 to help develop aspiring leaders by bringing the best and brightest of the industry together for a career-changing experience. Bayer, a co-founder of GSA, sees big opportunity in evolving the long-standing program.

“Bayer is honored to welcome Rain Bird to the Green Start Academy family, and we are equally excited about the program moving to Pinehurst ,” said Will McMurdo, head of the U.S. Turf & Ornamentals business for Bayer. “While John Deere and Bayer have made great strides with GSA since the program’s inception over 15 years ago, we both agreed that bringing another partner to the table and changing the venue would be a great way to evolve and elevate the program.  And we can’t think of a better partner than Rain Bird or a better venue than Pinehurst as we continue this time-honored tradition of helping develop the next generation of golf course superintendents in this game we all love.”

Green Start Academy is open to assistant golf course superintendents from the U.S. and Canada who are looking to advance their careers and build connections within the Golf industry. The 2021 application period will be open from July 1 through August 1, and selected participants will be notified by August 16. To apply or learn more about the 2021 event, visit the Green Start Academy website.

About Bayer

Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the Life Science fields of health care and agriculture. Its products and services are designed to benefit people and improve their quality of life. At the same time, the Group aims to create value through innovation, growth, and high earning power. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and to its social and ethical responsibilities as a corporate citizen. In fiscal 2017, the Group employed around 99,800 people and had sales of EUR 35.0 billion. Capital expenditures amounted to EUR 2.4 billion, R&D expenses to EUR 4.5 billion. For more information, go to

About John Deere

Deere & Company ( is a world leader in providing advanced products, technology, and services for customers whose work is revolutionizing agriculture and construction – those who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon the land to meet the world’s increasing need for food, fuel, shelter, and infrastructure.

About Rain Bird

Rain Bird Corporation – Golf Division provides complete irrigation solutions to golf courses across the globe. The company has one of the strongest portfolios of trusted, quality, leading-edge products including pump stations, rotors, field controllers, map-based and mobile central control systems, decoders, swing joints, filtration systems, valves, and irrigation accessories.  Central controls and pump stations are serviced and supported by a comprehensive Global Service Plan (GSP). Rain Bird products and services are sold worldwide through an extensive distribution network. For more information, please contact 1-800-RAINBIRD or visit

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