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Jay Karen, CAE

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Jay Karen is the CEO of National Golf Course Owners Association, where he leads the golf industry’s trade association and initiatives to support the success of the golf course business.  Prior to his appointment at NGCOA, Jay was CEO of Select Registry, a portfolio of over 300 premier boutique hotels, inns and B&Bs.  For seven years before that, Jay was President and CEO of the Professional Association of Innkeepers International, the leading trade association representing owners of small, independent lodging businesses.

Jay was also with the NGCOA for ten years early in his career, having served the association in several roles.  Jay holds a Master of Arts degree in American History from the College of Charleston and is a Certified Association Executive (CAE) by the American Society of Association Executives.  Jay has recently served on the board of directors of the United States Travel Association and the College of Charleston’s Hospitality and Tourism Management degree program.  In his role at NGCOA, he serves on the boards of the industry-wide advocacy coalition, We Are Golf, and the golf industry’s player development initiative, Golf 20/20.

On a personal note, Jay has been married for 15 years to an amazing woman, who is an independent college counselor, and has two children: a 9-year old daughter and 6-year old son.  His primary interests include spending as much time with his family as possible (priorities), playing golf (since the age of 8), amateur photography (who isn’t these days?), social media (he keeps Facebook in business), contemplating the meaning of life (doesn’t everyone?), swinging a 53-pound kettlebell as often as he can (you should too), and eating foods that are really bad for him (one foot on the gas, one foot on the brake).


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