Also down here is his 17-year-old daughter Heather, a junior at Archbishop McArthy High School in Southwest Ranches. That played a part as well.
“My other three kids are grown and off on their own but I still had one in high school, so I really did want to be close to her if I could,” said O’Dell, who currently has a home in Miami Lakes but actually was a Miami Springs resident for three years back in the early ’70s when he worked for Braniff Airways.
The first phone call Gorland made was to Charlie DeLucca over at International Links (formerly Melreese Country Club), probably one of the longest and most respected teaching golf pro’s South Florida has seen whose past students include current touring pro Erik Compton.
“It took him all of about five seconds to blurt out Paul’s name,” said Gorland. “To say Paul came highly recommended would probably understating the issue. Even after I talked to Charlie, I made more phone calls and every single time, his name would come up. I can honestly tell you not only did I not hear one negative thing about him, I didn’t even hear one neutral thing about him.”
Gorland, who admitted to repeated phone calls to O’Dell to talk him into getting back on a plane to South Florida to talk about the position, said he was looking for someone who had more of an astute business background than someone who could stick a 125-yard wedge shot 6 feet from the pin.
“He clearly fit the model of what we were looking for,” Gorland said. “Over the years, we tried the outsourcing, we tried an in-house pro and none of those things worked. Now we have someone not only with a solid business background but a marketing background as well. He is the consummate golf and country club business management professional and we’re really excited to have him.”