It is with great sadness that we inform all Aorangi Golf Clubs of the sudden death of Gavin Smith on Sunday 5th May aged 59 years.
Gavin was an energetic and passionate past board member, elected 2011 and elected Chairperson in 2014.
As an active member at the Tinwald Golf Club he became a strong advocate of the Forum process to improve the administration of golf in the Aorangi association. As a result of his enthusiasm he joined the Men’s Match committee and played a significant role for some years.
For the last 7 years Gavin was a member at the Mayfield Golf Club.
Gavin’s dedication to his role on the board was unquestionable.
Along with Grant Williams (Chairperson until 2014) he became very involved with the NZ Golf Administration Review 2012 to 2014.
Out of that Administration review Gavin took the lead for Aorangi Golf in the development of the Mainland Partnership Agreement in 2014 – 2015 as a way forward solution to improve the services that our Association provided to all clubs. This focus led him to work very closely with NZ Golf, Tasman Golf and Canterbury Golf, extremely time consuming.
It is no doubt that at times his passion and drive to create a strategic option for “golf growth” in the region took its toll on him personally. Unfortunately for the Association he resigned in 2016 without seeing through his enormous efforts.
A word from Grant Williams:
“Gavin worked huge hours … home with the chicken operations (7 days, sometimes driving to Hamilton and back without staying over), day job with a transport company and still fitted in time for golf administration. He used to joke with Max Walker (Canterbury and NZ Golf) that he would only have about 4 hours a night for sleep.”
Through the Mainland Partnership work Gavin built a strong and open relationship for Aorangi Golf with the Canterbury Golf Association. This has led to a now close working contract with Canterbury Golf, benefiting our association enormously.
A word from Grant Lewis, Canterbury Golf General Manager:
"During his time as Chairperson of Aorangi Golf Gavin Smith was a tireless worker and champion for the district. He was instrumental in implementing the Mainland Partnership that has seen assistance for the district from NZ Golf and Canterbury Golf for golf development and administration services in Aorangi. A man who led by his actions; he will be fondly remembered by all who interacted with him in the golf community."
There is no doubt that Gavin will be sorely missed by all that knew him as a friend and golfer.
We were truly fortunate to have such a likeable and dedicated man lead our association with no other agenda than to make a difference for Golf in Aorangi.
Our condolences go to Phyllis and the Smith family.