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Malinowski named golf director of Ocean Pines

 OCEAN PINES – The search for a new director of the Ocean Pines Golf & Country Club is over, as resident John C. Malinowski III officially began overseeing the day-to-day operations on Tuesday.

"I’m very excited to be here and meet our members. My professional and primary focus is to service our membership," Malinowski said on his first day on the job.

An Ocean Pines resident for about nine years, Malinowski was introduced to golf in his early years, but didn’t take any professional considerations in the sport until after his college.

He was a member of the golf team of Lenoir-Rhyne College in North Carolina, and while playing at the colligate level, he also worked at the Medal of Honor Golf Course at the Marine Corps base in Quantico, Va.

Upon graduation, Malinkowski landed a professional position at Catawba Country Club in North Carolina.

After a little more than a year at Catawba County Club, he was elected to membership in the Middle Atlantic section of the Professional Golfers’ Association of America (PGA of America).

Malinkowski then moved from his first professional position in golf to be the head professional at Montclair Golf Club in Virginia.

Becoming a PGA head pro requires more than 800 hours of education. Aspiring professionals are required to perform a series of written exams, simulation testing, attend seminars and pass the PGA playing ability test.

He then moved to be the director of instruction at Capital City Golf School in Washington, D.C., before becoming the head professional at River Run Golf Club in Ocean Pines in 2003.

Malinkowski stayed head professional there until taking the same position at Montgomery Country Club before returning to the Pines.

This all has led him to serving as the Middle Atlantic section’s 44th president, a title he still holds, as well as the being recipient of this year’s Professional of the Year award.

"That award was quite an honor. It is definitely, so far, the highlight of my professional career," Malinkowski said.

The new director has been heavily involved with the PGA since he joined. Malinkowski acted as the chairperson of the Middle Atlantic section’s education and membership program. Through this, he was able to redevelop the apprentice orientation program that helped aspiring pros get on the right track early in their career.

While at Ocean Pines, Malinkowski said he will continue to focus on education and he hopes to spend time with apprentices who want to advance.

Malinkowski has just begun working for the Ocean Pines Golf & Country Club, but he envisions a positive future for the longstanding course.

"I look forward to working with the Ocean Pines Association to make sure our golf course is the best it could be," he said.