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Kim Paez
International Operations Representative at PING Golf - 4 years
Golf Instructor at Arrowhead Country Club - 1 1/2 years

How did you get into golf?
I was introduced to the game of golf by my dad when I was 10 years old. He took me to the backyard and handed me a golf club and told me to swing. Later that week, I hit my first golf ball at the Dominguez Hills Driving Range in Torrance, California. From that day, I was hooked and you could find me at the range every afternoon! My dad immediately enrolled me in golf lessons and in every junior golf program we could find in Southern California. I continued to play in high school, I went on to earn a scholarship to play Division 1 Golf at the University of California, Irvine, and turned professional shortly after I graduated. 

Who would you identify as your mentor and/or individual you credit for your passion for golf and the industry?
I've met and worked with many incredible teaching professionals and coaches, but there are two people who have really inspired and supported me throughout this journey. First, I would say my dad. Without him, I would not have been introduced to this wonderful game. He instantly saw my potential and the possibilities that golf could offer, and he provided me with all the support and resources that any junior/amateur golfer would have hoped for! 

The second person would be my husband. We met right after college, while the both of us were chasing our dreams to play on tour. He is now an accomplished Professional Golfer who plays on multiple tours overseas and happens to be my swing coach as well. He's always supported and encouraged me to be the best participant in this game of golf, whether it's playing professionally or taking on a career path of teaching golf. When I made the decision in January 2021 to enroll in the PGM 3.0 Teaching and Coaching program, he helped connect with PGA Professionals in the Southwest section to expand my network and encouraged me to gain a deeper understanding of the golf swing and how to help others become the best golf they can be!

What are the obstacles you've overcome during your journey in the golf industry?
The biggest obstacle I faced was determining how I was going to transition from being a Professional Golfer to a Golf Professional. Being a competitor is only one aspect of this very large industry. As a PGA Golf Professional there are so many paths I could take, and I wanted to choose the path that still allowed me to work "hands on" with the game. I spent time working with the LA County Junior Golf Program and it was really rewarding helping juniors discover their love for golf. This experience inspired me to take the path of Teaching and Coaching, where I can apply my passion and knowledge of the game and help someone grow in their golf journey. 

What would be your message to others like yourself, who are on the fence when considering a career in the golf?
The wonderful thing about golf is that it is a game that can be played for a lifetime, allowing for so many opportunities. If your passion is to teach golf, run a successful business, offer exceptional customer service, or provide warm hospitality, you can create a fulfilling career in this industry for yourself. The key is to choose this career for the right reasons and because you truly enjoy it.  

What would be your dream foursome?
My ideal foursome would be with Rory McIlroy, Justin Thomas and Tiger Woods.