Growing up in small-town Dunnellon, Florida, Laura Neal and her family played casual golf on Sundays when their family-owned restaurant, Lombardo’s, closed for the day. Her humble place in the game — which was simply an enjoyable bonding activity at the time — would turn into something she never imagined.
“Golf has always been part of my life, but I never thought I would make a career out of it,” Neal said.
That changed after Neal volunteered at the 1997 Players Championship, an experience that convinced her to intern with the LPGA. She graduated in 1998 from nearby St. Augustine’s Flagler College with a degree in communications and sport management, and quickly landed a full-time position with the LPGA, eventually becoming the director of public relations.
A self-described “road warrior” from the moment she started at the LPGA, Neal called the job “her second degree.” It was an education that featured traveling to tournaments worldwide for nine years as she played a key role in the tour’s communications. F...
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