SAN DIEGO – Last fall’s landmark announcement of a strategic alliance between the PGA Tour and European Tour may bring an equally historic change to the Tour’s policy board.
Rory McIlroy, Russell Knox and Kevin Streelman have been nominated by the current player directors to run for the chairman of the player advisory council. The winner will ascend to the policy board next year for a three-year term. The election is potentially historic because there’s never been a non-American policy board player director.
“I’ve enjoyed being on the PAC the last couple of years and I think that with what’s happening between the PGA Tour and the European Tour I have the ear of the PGA Tour and I have the ear of the European Tour,” McIlroy said following his opening-round 68 at the Farmers Insurance Open. “I just feel like I’ve been around a long time and I feel I can maybe help facilitate things and maybe guide things in a certain direction for what I think is better for everyone.”
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Although there weren’t many details regarding the PGA Tour and European Tour alliance, the idea is to “explore all facets of collaboration, working together on strategic commercial opportunities including collaborating on global media rights.”
The Northern Irishman would be a favorite in the election, which is decided by a player vote that ends on Feb. 11, although Scotland’s Knox would also shift the American-only makeup of the four player directors and Streelman has already served one term as a player director.
McIlroy has been a member of the 16-player PAC during some of the most turbulent times in the Tour’s history. The last two years the circuit has renegotiated multiple television rights agreements, launched the alliance with the European Tour and resumed play last June in the middle of a pandemic.
“I’ve enjoyed getting to know more about the Tour business, I’ve enjoyed being a part of the calls that went into being able to play out here with COVID conditions,” McIlroy said. “Sometimes on the PAC it’s great to be involved and it’s great to have your voice heard but that’s all it does. You don’t have a vote and being PAC chair, being on the policy board you have a vote and your voice actually counts.”