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Ed Townsend | Democrat

Liberty native Nick Yaun is the new Head Golf Professional at Brae Burn Country Club in Purchase, N.Y.

Nick Yaun becomes youngest head golf pro in tri-state area

By Ed Townsend
SULLIVAN COUNTY — November 23, 2010 — Bringing professionalism to the game of golf is certainly a major factor in the appointment recently of Liberty’s Nick Yaun as the new Head Golf Professional of the Brae Burn Country Club in Purchase, N.Y.
Brae Burn Golf Chairman Jonathan Rachlin noted that the Head Golf Pro Search Committee received over 60 applications and interviewed eight applicants before selecting Yaun for this position.
The 27-year-old Yaun was introduced to the Metropolitan Golf Association (Met) at its fall meeting by Monticello professional Bobby Heins and is said to be the youngest Head Pro in the tri-state region.
In announcing Yaun’s appointment, Rachlin said, “Nick has many new ideas that he wants to implement next season, please join me in wishing him success in his new role at Brae Burn.”
When Brae Burn was formed in 1964, it was the first new member-owned club created in Westchester County since the late 1920s and its name was achieved in a contest among members. Frank Duane, a long-time protege of Robert Trent Jones, was retained to design the golf course, which was ready for play in June 1965.
Yaun started playing golf at the age of 12 and gave up playing his last year in Little League to pursue his love for the sport of golf. His mom and dad, Tim and Cynthia Yaun, made strong efforts in Nick’s early years in golf to provide him with the opportunity to compete in the International Junior Golf Tour. At Liberty Central High School, Nick played golf on the varsity golf team when he was in the seventh grade with his first coach being Russ Stahl. He later was coached by Phil Fanning while playing six years of varsity golf.
Yaun also took private lessons from from instructor Steve Eisenberg, who said that “Nick has great potential.”
Following high school where he also played varsity basketball, Yaun enrolled at Campbell University in Buies Creek, N.C., which offered one of the top collegiate golf programs in the country. He qualified and made the team as a freshman.
Yaun’s college plans changed the second year as he transferred to Clemson University at Clemson, S.C. Although he did not play on the team that year, the school went on to win the NCAA championship.
At Clemson, Yaun entered into the Professional Golf Management (PGM) program which competed at several school locations in that area of South Carolina. Out of 12 events, Yaun won nine championships while enjoying competing with a number of the players on the Clemson national championship team who are now playing on the PGA Tour.
The PGM program at Clemson University proved to be a great stepping stone for Yaun as part of the program required him to complete a summer internship at the Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, N.Y. The Winged Foot Golf Club, ranked No. 8 in America, had as its Golf Professional Tom Nieforte, who liked Yaun and asked him to stay on full-time at the club as an Assistant Golf Professional. Knowing he would have to leave college, Nick took the opportunity offered to him and became the club’s new Assistant Golf Pro.
Yaun stayed at Winged Foot through 2004 when he again made an important decision for his professional growth and went to work as a trainee at the Jim McLean Golf School at Doral in Miami, Fla.
Well known for his presence on The Golf Channel, McLean is recognized worldwide as an authority on the golf swing. Consistently ranked amongst the best in the golf instruction business, the Jim McLean Golf School was ranked the No. 1 golf school in America by CNN and U.S. News and World Report.
Yaun noted he took quite a cut in pay to become a trainee at this school, but his dedication and hard work paid off when he completed the two-year training course and received his Certified Assistant Professional degree and qualified at that time as an Assistant Golf Teaching Professional.
Through this school, Yaun made various professional golf contacts and at the age of 25 was employed as the 1st Assistant Golf Professional who also gave all the lessons at the Upper Montclair Country Club in Clifton, N.J.
Several years ago, Yaun received his Professional Golf Association (PGA) Class A Golf Professional designation.
While working at Upper Montclair, he helped manage the Sybase ShopRite Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) National Tournament, the fourth largest LPGA tournament in the United States.

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