By Design – Issue 63, Fall 2023

22 ASGCA DONALD ROSS AWARD I can’t think of a time when golf was not a central part of my day,” says Frank Jemsek, the owner of Illinois golf operator Jemsek Golf. “I believe that if you find work you love, it’s not really work. That’s what I found in the game of golf.” In 1951, Frank was just 11 years old when his father Joe brought him into the family business, at St. Andrews Golf & Country Club in West Chicago. As Frank grew, so did the family’s club portfolio: to include Cog Hill and Pine Meadow in Illinois, as well as Summer Grove in Georgia. And, following in his father’s footsteps, Frank has devoted his life to the sport. Both men are now recognized in the Illinois Golf Hall of Fame. “My favorite days of the week still start at dawn on Saturday when I greet the regular golfers as they tee off and on Sunday evenings, where I greet golfers who come out together for the ‘Family Fun Golf’ nights,” says Frank. “I truly enjoy watching grandparents, parents and children golfing together and creating lasting memories. “Some of my fondest memories come from spending time on the golf course with my kids; I can remember how proud I was when my son beat me for the first time. I am also very lucky to be able to drive around the course with my grandchildren and relish in their excitement when they hit a good shot.” Jemsek Golf is a true family business. Frank’s daughters, Katherine and Marla, are Cog Hill’s president and accountant respectively. His youngest, Joe, is a golf course architect. And son-inlaw Kevin Weeks, Marla’s husband, is the 2023 PGA Teacher & Coach of the Year. “Our grow-the-game initiatives are some of my proudest contributions to the game of golf,” says Frank. “My dad always stressed the importance of having great teachers. He believed that if golfers could play better, the round would be more fun, and they would play more often.” Golf for all Family Fun Golf followed a conversation with Leon McNair from the Wadsworth Foundation. By Design speaks with Frank Jemsek, the recipient of the 2023 ASGCA Donald Ross Award, and his family, about their life in golf. A great golf family “ I truly enjoy watching grandparents, parents and children golfing together” “