Brady Kelley ’17 Takes Care of Business at Ryder Cup

Through his internship with event company Barton G., Kelley helped with the operation of 80 corporate hospitality tents at the Ryder Cup.
Posted on October 11th, 2016 by

Brady Kelley at Hazeltine National Golf Club for the Ryder Cup.

When Brady Kelley ’17 arrived at Hazeltine National Golf Club for the first day of his internship this July, his supervisor shook his hand, tossed him the keys to a courtesy car, and told him to hustle over to Lehman Village to get to work with the Ryder Cup’s corporate partnership team.

For the next three months, the Gustavus Adolphus College senior spent his days working with vendors, managing logistics, and helping to supervise the advance planning and operation of 80 corporate hospitality tents at the 2016 Ryder Cup. After clearing several interviews, Kelley was one of seven interns hired by event company Barton G. to help manage corporate events at the international tournament, which brought nearly 300,000 fans to the Chaska, Minn. golf course.

Kelley poses with PGA golfer and Ryder Cup champion Patrick Reed.

Kelley poses with PGA golfer and Ryder Cup champion Patrick Reed.

In the lead-up to the event he made sure that sponsors’ expectations were met by planning for each location with hosts and vendors, supervising the set-up of the corporate “chalet” tents, and conducting walk-throughs to make sure the tents were ready for the tournament.

“It was 100 miles an hour from the first day,” Kelley recalled. “The most impressive part of the experience for me was seeing how the PGA, Barton G., and all the other companies from across the country and around the world came together and cooperated to get the job done.”

During the week of the tournament, Kelley arrived at the course each day at 7:30 a.m. and didn’t leave until the tents were cleaned and closed around 11 p.m.

“As interns, our job was to make it all happen,” he explained. “One minute I was moving tables and the next I was answering questions about logistics or the tournament.”

Kelley points to the time management skills he honed as a member of the Gustavus hockey team, vice president of the mentoring program, student ambassador, Relay for Life committee member, and founder of the Hill Crew spirit squad as being a key to his success this summer.

“I think my involvement here at Gustavus helped me a lot in my internship,” he said. “The ability to balance demands and communicate with all the different personalities is as important on campus as it is in the business world.”

Kelley with Gustavus management professor Kathi Tunheim at the 2016 Ryder Cup.

Kelley with Gustavus management professor Kathi Tunheim at the 2016 Ryder Cup.

“It has been a joy getting to know and work with Brady in the classroom and the Gustavus Mentoring Program,” Gustavus Board of Trustees Endowed Chair in Management and Leadership Kathi Tunheim said. “He is a high-potential leader and some organization is going to be very fortunate to get him as an employee.”

Kelley, who hopes to work in business development or sports marketing, looks to continue building relationships both on and off campus as he prepares for graduation this spring.

“Brady understands the importance of networking relationships, which is a skill that will serve him extremely well as he launches his business career,” Tunheim added. “He’s a special young man and I know we’ll miss him when he leaves The Hill.”

Despite Kelley’s knack for building relationships and finding a way to get the job done, he’s still a sports fan at heart. “Seeing the work ethic and skills necessary to put on a major event and perform at a high level is my biggest takeaway from the internship,” he said.

Kelley paused a beat.

“But the coolest part was getting to meet all of the professional golfers.”


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Luc Hatlestad



  1. Wendy Bachman says:

    Great article! Great guy!

  2. Ted Rosenback/Marketplace Supervisor says:

    Great job Brady!!! Made us proud at the Ryder Cup!!!


  3. Steve K. says:

    Congratulations Brady! and best wishes as you go out “to act on the great challenges of our time”!