By Steve Pike
Wanda Krowlikowski remembers well her interview for the head golf professional’s job at The Little Club in Gulf Steam.
“I was at a nice table in the dining room with board members looking out on the golf course,” Krowlikowski said. “They asked me if I thought I would be happy here. I answered, ‘What’s not to like?’ ’’
Indeed, The Little Club is one of the state’s top par-three golf courses, featuring a Paspalum grass playing surface and two holes — the 11th and 12th — that back up to the Intracoastal Waterway and a 300-membership roll (approximately 150 of whom are golfers) that includes legendary golf course architect Pete Dye and his wife, Alice.
What’s not to like? The club’s board members thought the same thing about Krowlikowski. They hired her from a pool of 55 applicants on April 1, 2008.
“I think they like my enthusiasm,” said Krowlikowski, a member of the LPGA and PGA of America. “I wasn’t looking to change what they had here. This is a pretty old club and members don’t like a lot of change. I was happy about that.”
Happy particularly because, until that April 2008, Krowlikowski had led the nomadic professional life of a lot of golf professionals. That is, moving from club to club and course to course every few years. In Krowlikowski’s case, that movement was in the Boca Raton-Delray Beach area. One of four children from a golfing family in Pennsylvania, Krowlikowski first came to the area to attend Marymount College (now Lynn University) in 1974 and, except for a few summers, never left.
“I had aspirations of getting on the mini tour,” said Krowlikowski, 55. “Then in 1979 I got a job as an assistant at Delair Country Club (in Delray Beach). Actually I was a shop girl. I worked there for seven years and the got my first head professional’s job at Boca Teeca (now Ocean Breeze) in 1987. I went back and forth to Pennsylvania to teach in the summer and came back down here in the winter.”
Krowlikowski has also worked at Stonebridge Golf and Country Club in Boca Raton, Wycliffe Country Club in Lake Worth and the American Golfers Club in Fort Lauderdale. That now-closed facility featured an executive golf course, nine-hole pitch and putt and a lighted driving range.
“I’ve been at just about every kind of facility — private, semi-private, public, executive. Now a par 3. This is something different all together. We only play between 7,000 and 8,000 rounds per year,” Krowlikowski said.
“I enjoy it here. It’s a less hectic pace. That’s just what I need at my age.”
What’s not to like?