Mark was presented with the 2018 New Jersey PGA Patriot Award in October of 2018.
The Patriot Award recognizes a PGA Professional that personifies patriotism through the game of golf and demonstrates unwavering commitment and dedication to the men and women who have valiantly served and protected the United States of America.
"I cannot thank my family and friends enough who have supported not just me, but our entire family in our efforts to help the men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country. This award is very close to my heart, and I am very proud to be the 2018 recipient of such a distinguished honor."
Mark was born and raised in Waldwick, NJ, and now resides in Long Valley, NJ along with his wife, and two children. After graduating from Waldwick High School in 2002, Mark attended Neumann University, followed by the Golf Academy of America in South Carolina. Mark started his golf career at Montammy Golf Club in Alpine, NJ, in 2005 as a summer job, and once graduated became a full time employee. Mark has dedicated himself to being a student, and teacher of the game of golf. He enjoys the challenge both on and off the course. In 2017, Mark was elected to membership of the PGA of America, and is a Class A PGA Member in good standing.
Away from golf, Mark is a USA Hockey certified coach, and specializes in training goaltenders. Mark coaches Youth Travel Hockey ages 5-18, ranging from beginners, to players preparing for prep school and college.
Mark is currently the Head Golf Professional at Basking Ridge Country Club in Basking Ridge, NJ.
One thing that I have learned, and I encourage all my students to do is swing your swing. If you look down the line of PGA Tour professionals while they warm up on the driving range, no swing looks the same. Yes, they hit the ball great, but do you think a player like Jim Furyk changed what felt natural to him? Obviously not, and of course he did win the US Open, so he is the perfect exaple why not everyone swings the club the same way. Being self-taught myself, I found my strengths and also my weaknesses, which allowed me to learn how to play the game my way.
As an Instructor, and also a Professional, I have developed a way to translate to each individual student what tools they need for themselves in order to navigate around a golf course. Starting from basic fundaments like grip, aim and setup, and working into angle of attack, swing plane, etc., my students always feel comfortable in their abilites after lessons.
Of all the lessons I give, about 70% of them take place on the golf course, or on the short game range. I do not believe standing on a driving range hitting balls for 2+ hours will make anyone better. Working on your swing for 30 minutes should be the most.
"Then why take a 1 hour golf lesson?"
Happy you asked. Most lessons are an hour, but that never means we are working on the golf swing the entire time. Most lessons consist of about 15-30 minutes of actual work on the swing. Using video, launch monitors, or swing catalyst, we analyze your swing, see where problems are stemming from and attack the issue. From that point on, we work on hitting shots, not the swing. Many people get confused with the two, but I assure you, when I am hitting a few balls on the range, I am not thinking about angle of attack, or what degree my club path is moving on my takeaway.
In closing, I have had the pleasure of working with all levels of golfers, from brand new to the game, to scratch handicaps, to golfers who have been playing the game for 50+ years. Every lesson is different, as is every golfer. I have been blessed to do what I love as a career, and work hard everyday helping students enjoy this amazing game.
Mark is the Co-Founder of the SSGT Joseph D'Augustine Memorial Fund, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization which is in honor of his late brother-in-law, SSGT Joseph D'Augustine. In 2012, Mark, along with his wife, Nicole, ran and operated the 1st SSJDMF Golf Outing at Montammy Golf Club. Each year since, the outing has been a sellout, and all the money raised goes directly back to veterans through the Memorial Fund.
The 2020 SSJDMF Golf Outing will be held at Montammy Golf Club in Alpine, NJ in August (please check back for official date!)
For more information on Foursomes and Sponsorships, please visit:
**VETERANS ARE ALL SPONSORED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE GOLF OUTING. PLEASE CONTACT MARK FOR MORE INFO.**
For more information on lesson rates and packages, please send a message with your inquiry.