Adam McKinlay

Adam McKinlay – Co-founder and owner

McKinlay Reid International School

McKinlay Reid Academy
What led you to becoming a PGA Professional?


A passion for human learning and performance. A love of the game of golf and an admiration for the organization. These are the primary reason I became a PGA Professional
How long have you been in your current position?


Our school forms part of a project which is the culmination of 25 years of practical and theoretical study into human learning and performance. However I have been based in South Africa since 2011 and started the school in 2015.


What does your job entail?


I do not have a job but a vision that I am working towards realizing


McKinlay Reid’s vision is to inspire and motivate Africa’s youth to develop 21st century learning skills and abilities. Which will enable them to adapt and thrive in the ever changing modern world.


Our mission is to modernize approaches to learning. To bring them into line with 21st century requirements. The world of work has changed and will continue to, at an ever more rapid pace. Our goal being to ensure that we prepare the youth of today to thrive in the world of tomorrow.


Our project with our school at Fancourt is to use golf and education to create life changing education and life opportunities for our community. Whether that be to a secure a place on our PGA training programme or on a scholarship to a US College.


My role is to manage all of the processes, people and procedures so that our above objectives become tangible realities for our community members. Whilst I continue to refine and develop our services and my understanding.


Do you have any environmental or sustainability goals that you have met and would like to share?


The transformation charter aims to ensure that the majority are provided with


  • The opportunity to participate and excel in sport
  • Both on and off the field of play
  • In a structured and organized manner


Which is why we have structured our junior development programme in the way that we have. It is pyramid shaped with mass participation at the bottom and a US College scholarship programme at the top. This structure aims to provide any child with talent the opportunity to pursue it. In line with the charters objectives above.


Please give us a brief outline of the path you took to lead you to your current position Played junior golf as a junior in Zimbabwe, tried to become a professional. Realized I wasn’t good enough so dedicated myself to becoming a coach and learning optimal ways to support other aspiring elite golfers.


I moved to the UK in 1997 to undertake my PGA training and started coaching junior players. During the process I realized I needed to develop my understanding of the learning process so I studied Philosophy at the University of London.


Once I had completed my degree and qualified as a PGA professional I ran three academies for TopGolf where we introduced more than 60 000 juniors per year to the game. Our least successful site TopGolf Surrey had 20 000 juniors.


Whilst working at TopGolf I was approached by an International Management company to move to Fancourt and set up a junior programme to produce talented players. Which I did, relocating from London to George in 2011.


Whilst at Fancourt we grew one of the most successful junior programmes in the country. Introducing 600 to 900 juniors a week and taking their junior programme from having no juniors in the top 100 Junior National Order of Merit(JNOOM) in 2011. To 7 juniors in the Top 30 JNOOM in 2017 and players moving from Europe and America to join our programme.


As part of that same project we opened McKinlay Reid International School. Last year five of our students secured golf scholarships to the USA. This year we have partnered with fellow PGA coaches across the country to provide them with academic services to allow them to help their players to do the same. In line with our transformation charter objectives.


Next year we aim to grow and develop these services broadening our reach. So that PGA coaches across Southern Africa can add an education service, with advice from an International Management company and industry specialists to their service offering. For the benefit of the youth in their community.



Why do you feel that you would be a good candidate to win this award?


The fact that a PGA professional is pioneering a new approach to education and running a school I believe demonstrates how the PGA qualification can open many doors and develop a range of skills. The PGA qualification is an excellent way to progress within an exciting and ever-changing industry.


I also believe that it will show new trainees that they need to be open minded about how their careers may develop. That the future is about developing their skills so that they can easily adapt to change. As the job for life era has ended and our industry as a whole is going to have to change to thrive.