Meet the Staff

PGA Director of Golf & Club Operation

A native of East Stroudsburg, PA, Rob is a second generation PGA Golf Professional with 20 years of Golf and Business experience under his belt. He has worked at some of the finest golf courses and clubs in America and prides himself on delivering premier products and first class services. With a BS in Business Management from Oral Roberts University and time as an owner and producer of Blue Yonder Films, Rob has a diverse background that enables him to wear the many hats that a Director of Golf must wear.

Rob is married to renowned Pediatric Ophthalmologist, Dr. Tammy Yanovitch, and has a son named Ilya who loves hockey almost as much as his dad does. Rob’s love of the game of golf goes far beyond the business world. He is an accomplished player and teacher and enjoys conversations about the swing, golf course design, and has a great respect for the history of the game, taught to him by his father Vince, a 50 year PGA member. Along with his PGA Class A Membership, Rob has achieved PGA Special Certifications in both Instruction and Golf Operations.

rob.yanovitch@shangrilaok.com

Golf Course Superintendent

Course Superintendent, Justin May came to Shangri-La Golf Club from Dallas Country Club where he served as Assistant Superintendent. He is no stranger to course redevelopment and championship maintenance programs. During his tenure at Dallas Country Club, the course underwent a complete renovation. He is no stranger to Oklahoma, either. Raised in Altus, Oklahoma, Justin has degrees in both Agriculture Education and Turf Management from Oklahoma State University. He served as Assistant Superintendent at Oak Tree Country Club in Edmond during the period that Oak Tree hosted the 67th Senior PGA Championship.

Justin and his wife Mandi have three sons Trip, Tagg and Trax.

justin.may@shangrilaok.com

Lead Assistant Golf Professional

When you begin playing golf at age 2, par your first hole at age 4, and continue to play near scratch golf as an adult, you are passionate about golf. Shangri-La’s Lead Assistant Golf Professional, Ryan Dalton, is passionate about golf! A native of Joplin, Missouri, Ryan learned to play on the old Loma Linda Golf Course (now Eagle Creek at Downstream Casino). He honed his golf skills under the tutelage of the late Ben Pell, who was the pro there during his formative years. Today, he sports a handicap of 0.2 (if you’re looking for a partner). “I did have a 0.0 handicap when I started here,” he grins. “But now that I work at a golf club, I don’t have as much time to play. My handicap is starting to inch up a little.”

Ryan began his business career in the retail liquor business, first operating retail stores owned by a friend, then as owner of Dalton’s Discount Liquor and Tobacco in the Joplin area. He later moved to the Miller-Coors distributorship in northeastern Oklahoma, southeastern Kansas and southwestern Missouri. “That’s how I learned the Grand Lake area,” Ryan laughs. “I used to deliver beer to Serenity point in my boat, because it was so much faster than trying to get there by land.”

Just before joining the Shangri-La staff, Ryan joined the team of the nation’s largest lawn care company, Trugreen, first as a sales rep, then satellite manager, then Business Development Representative. But his passion for golf continued to tug at his heart. “I’d been thinking about what I really wanted to do for the rest of my working life. The first thing that came to mind was something in golf. That’s my passion,” he says. “It’s great on the Island,” Ryan says. “I used to drive an hour to work. Now, living right at the edge of the golf course, the only way it takes me an hour to get to work is if I ‘play’ my way there on the course. It’s just the best!” he says.

ryan.dalton@shangrilaok.com

Assistant Golf Professional

Bradley Jumper is the newest Assistant Golf Professional on the Shangri-La team. A native of nearby Seneca, Missouri, he played col-lege golf at Missouri Southern State University before graduating from Northwest Lineman College in Denton, Texas. “It took me about nine months working on power lines to find out that wasn’t for me,” he says. “I grew up playing golf and finally realized that was my first love.” Playing golf in high school at Seneca, Bradley had become friends with Shangri-La Assistant Professional Kaleb Forkner. When Bradley was in high school, his team practiced at Eagle Creek when Kaleb was an Assistant Pro at that course. “I had stayed in touch with Kaleb,” Bradley recalls, “and when I told him I was looking for a job, he mentioned the PGA program and helped me get on board at Shangri-La.”

He joined the Shangri-La golf operations in April, 2017, working at bag drop. His solid work ethic and atten-tion to detail quickly caught the attention of PGA Direc-tor of Golf Rob Yanovitch, who moved him up through the ranks to his current slot as an Assistant Golf Profes-sional. He hasn’t started teaching lessons, but is undoubt-edly headed in that direction. “I’m working in the Golf Shop, booking tee times, ordering merchandise, and helping members and guests who are trying to get on the course,” he says. “The hours can be long. Sometimes the late nights and early mornings come back to back – but I love it. It’s great to be able to come to work at a golf course like Shangri-La every day. There just aren’t many courses this nice.”

Bradley moved to Monkey Island (Port Duncan) from Seneca where his parents, grandparents, and two older brothers still live. He is single, but saves time to spend with his family.Aside from working in a little bit of time for fishing, though, golf pretty much consumes Bradley’s spare time. “Sometimes I go weeks without leaving Monkey Is-land,” he laughs. “My life is pretty much here. I have a lot of goals in terms of golf achievements and tournaments I’d like to play – but my ultimate goal is to become a Head Golf Pro in the future. This is a great place to learn and work toward those goals. “This is definitely one of the nicest golf courses any-where in the country. It’s an honor to be a part of the Shangri-La program,” he says.
If you haven’t met Bradley, stop by the Golf Shop and tell him “hello.” You’ll recognize him for his striking re-semblance to Tour Professional Rickie Fowler (for which he catches grief from co-workers every day). He works Friday-Tuesday.

bradley.jumper@shangrilaok.com

Assistant Golf Professional

Shangri-La Golf Club’s newest Assistant Golf Pro may be new to the job, but he’s not new to Shangri-La or our members. Jerrod has worked as Golf Shop Assistant for the past two years; and now, he’s moving up the ladder and onto the course.

A native of Pryor, Oklahoma, Jerrod played golf on his high school team before attending college at Northeastern Oklahoma State University in Tahlequah.

“After two years at Northeastern, I got married and had to get a job. You know how that goes,” Jerrod laughs. He and his wife, Sherrie, have two children, Hunter and Paige.

For fifteen years, he owned and operated a screen printing company in Pryor. He still does a little screen printing and embroidery work on the side, but he no longer has the store in Pryor.

“I wanted to do something else, and I have always loved golf; so I decided that’s the direction I wanted to go,” he says.

His daughter Paige is no stranger to Shangri-La members, either. She has worked in the Golf Shop for four years. Her love of Shangri-La is actually what enticed Jerrod to the scene.

“Paige introduced me to the guys here, and I loved it. It’s a great team, and a great way to get more involved in golf,” Jerrod says. He is currently involved in the PGA program, a rigorous training program that, in itself, is like obtaining another college degree.

“It’s quite a bit of money and quite a bit of work,” he says. “At a bare minimum, it takes 30 months to get it all done. It’s a lot of studying and a lot of testing. “I want to get involved in teaching and learning how to run a golf course. Hopefully, I can end up as a head professional at a course somewhere, someday.”

Jerrod works outside in player services on Tuesdays & Wednesdays, helping with the flow of golfers. Friday-Sunday, he’s on the course and available to assist in any way he can.

“I’m very happy here,” he says. “I love the members, the staff – our entire team. I’m thrilled to be here and be a cog in the Shangri-La wheel.”

jerrod.neighbors@shangrilaok.com

Director of Player Services

With more than a dozen years under his belt at Shangri-La, John Lewis is armed with a wealth of comparative Shangri-La club knowledge, past, present and future. It is knowledge accumulated over more than a decade since he moved here from Texas. We have all heard of people from west Texas, but that’s where John is really from – the actual town of West. West, Texas. From there, he moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex where he spent two decades – ten years with Texas Instruments and another ten in the roofing business. His love of golf began when his dad put his first club in his hand at the age of 12, but his passion developed while playing with colleagues during his tenure at Texas Instruments.

For John, golf is both his passion and his work. It’s not likely you will hit the course at Shangri-La without John first making certain you have everything you need. He’s never far from the course. In fact, he lives on the course at Vista Towers and his normal commute-to-work vehicle is his golf cart. John is the father of three. His daughter Kasey recently married and lives in St. Paul, Minnesota. A second daughter, Allie, is a pre-med major at the University of Florida, and his son, Collin, is a sophomore at Quapaw High School. He loves ATV four-wheeling, shooting, and taking on all comers at Tiger Woods Xbox. But first of all – it’s golf.

john.lewis@shangrilaok.com

Shangri-La Course Mascot

Before you start longing for “a dog’s life,” perhaps you should take a look into a day on the job for a working dog. A workday for “Bogey,” whose title is either “Director of Golf Course Control” or “Golf Course Dog,” depending on his performance at any given time, involves fifteen miles a day of running the course, chasing geese, arguing with the other dogs on Shangri-La Golf Club’s canine crew, or working under the strict supervision of Golf Course Superintendent Justin May.

“Bogey is worth about $3,500,” Justin laughs. “The $50 I paid for him and the $3,000 in vet bill since then.”

A rescue Border Collie, Bogey has seniority among the Shangri-La Golf Course Canine Crew. He’ll soon be seven years old, but he came to the golf course team as a mere pup in the winter of 2014 – and has worked like a dog ever since.

Like many employees in lots of places, Bogey doesn’t always stick to his assigned tasks.

“He checks the level in the water hazards,” Justin moans. “And he’s a regular at the Turn House trying to run quality control tests on the bacon, but he’s really supposed to be keeping geese off the golf course. That’s how he got the name ‘Bogey.’ Sometimes, he just doesn’t stay focused enough to make things happen exactly like he should. Just like our players, when things don’t go exactly as they should, you end up with a bogey. That’s how he got his name,” Justin grins.

Bogey is a favorite with the staff and members at Shangri-La. He waits obediently on Justin’s golf cart while meetings are going on. Still, the instant Justin fires up his golf cart, Bogey is off and running – always trying to stay ahead of Justin and lead him where he’s supposed to go, but always looking back – and sometimes backtracking – to make sure he and Justin are both headed where they need to be.

“That’s where those vet bills come in,” Justin says. “He starts and stops and darts and dodges so much; he sometimes has a problem getting run over. But he’s always right back at work.”

If you are not familiar with the four-legged “Director of Golf Course Control” job description, it involves working in the stifling heat and the crippling cold year-round. Pay is embarrassingly low, but benefits are plentiful – all meals and snacks (including bacon) are provided, along with 100% paid medical and dental. Full room & board is paid, and transportation to and from work is provided daily. Breaks are provided for naps during the workday. Living expenses are provided, including wardrobe care.

Bogey is a dog of few words, but he did share a few of his thoughts about life as a Golf Course Control supervisor at Shangri-La.

His favorite part of the golf course to search for those pesky geese?

“Ruff!”

How would he describe his job?

“Ruff!”

How about life as a dog under the guidance of Golf Course Superintendent Justin May.

“Ruff!”

If you’re on the golf course or around the clubhouse, you will undoubtedly see Bogey. And yes, he accepts tips. Preferably…bacon.