Shattuck’s First Major Sure to be a Memorable One

By Jeff Babineau

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Braden Shattuck knows what it’s like to watch the game of golf be taken away from him. While playing the mini-tours and chasing professional golf aspirations in Florida four years ago, Shattuck, now 28, was involved in a car accident in which he herniated two discs in his back. Walking became a painful challenge, and he had serious doubts that golf would be a part of his future.

For a player who loved to play and practice, and no stranger to 12-hour days spent working on his game, Shattuck could not swing a club for the better part of two years. Once healthy, he returned to the game in a different role, gaining his PGA of America A-14 designation a year ago and taking on duties as the director of instruction at Rolling Green Golf Club, just outside of Philadelphia.

This week, he has a tournament to play in upstate New York. He is in the first group of the day at the PGA Championship at Oak Hill. Shattuck got here by winning in his PGA Professional Championship debut at Twin Warriors Golf Club in New Mexico earlier this month, one of 20 club professionals to make it through and earn a berth in the PGA at storied Oak Hill, which is playing host to its fourth PGA Championship.

Asked if could imagine being here as a participant considering where he was four years ago, Shattuck said, “I could definitely imagine it. But I didn’t think it would actually happen.”

It was two years after the accident that Shattuck was able to play nine holes, and even then, he couldn’t practice. He came up with a makeshift, overhauled swing that he said feels almost as if it belongs to somebody else. He utilizes a weaker grip with his top left hand and changed his swing path to be more upright.

Shattuck will play in Thursday’s opening group alongside Shaun Micheel, who won the PGA at Oak Hill in 2003, and New Zealand’s Steven Alker, last year’s Kitchenaid Senior PGA champion. Shattuck, who played one year of college golf at Delaware before chasing the mini-tour circuit, shot 9-under 279 to win by a shot at Twin Warriors and Santa Ana Golf Clubs.

“Yeah, for a while there I thought golf might be out of the question,” Shattuck said, looking back to his 2019 accident in which the car he was traveling in was t-boned by another driver at an intersection. Beyond the herniated discs, he sustained a concussion and experienced nerve issues in his legs. “You kind of rely on uncertainty there for a while, and it kind of sucks. But yeah, definitely the goal was still to get back here.”

Rolling Greel held a watch party for Shattuck’s final round, with about 50-60 members on edge as they watched. Several are expected to make the six-hour drive to upstate New York to see him compete.

Shattuck is one of 12 first-timers among the 20 PGA pros who compose the Corebridge Financial PGA Team. As national champion, he will get six starts on the PGA Tour beginning in 2024. Asked for his goal for this week at a demanding Oak Hill test, Shattuck said it would be to play his way into the weekend. “I don’t think it’s reasonable to think I can win the golf tournament and beat the best players in the world,” he said, “but I think I can definitely make the cut this week.”

Scott Chisholm, director of golf at Rolling Green, where Shattuck teaches, said it’s a busy week at the club, with several events scheduled, but a lot of folks will be taking a keen interest in how Shattuck fares in his first major championship. Chisholm said Shattuck has no weaknesses in his game, and carries enough length to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with top tour pros from around the world.

Best yet, Shattuck’s participation has sparked some nice energy back at his home club.

“The members are excited for Braden,” Chisholm said. “I know his lesson book is certainly filling up right now.”

How to Watch the PGA Championship

Thursday, May 18
7:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on ESPN+
1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on ESPN

Friday, May 19
7:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on ESPN+
1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on ESPN

Saturday, May 20
8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. on ESPN+
10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on ESPN
1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on CBS

Sunday, May 21
8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. on ESPN+
10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. on ESPN
1:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. on CBS

Philadelphia PGA Members Hold Crucial Roles at PGA Championship 
In addition to Braden Shattuck, PGA, making the first stroke in the 2023 PGA Championship (7:00 a.m. on No. 1), several other Philadelphia PGA Members will hold crucial roles in the championship, including:
  • Jeff Kiddie, PGA: the reigning PGA Golf Professional of the Year, past Section president, and Aronimink G.C. PGA head professional serves on the PGA Rules Committee and will work as a rules official this week at Oak Hill C.C.
  • Tom Carpus, PGA: a past Section president and current PGA Tour Champions rules official also serves on the PGA Rules Committee, and will assist the PGA of America as an official this week, in addition to joining the CBS Sports Network and Paramount+ teams on their broadcasts.
  • Alice Miller, PGA: a major champion, Section Rules Committee chair, and DuPont C.C. PGA golf instructor, Miller serves on the PGA Rules Committee and will join Kiddie and Carpus on the Rules team at the championship.
  • John Pillar, PGA: the current PGA District 2 director, past Section president, and C.C. at Woodloch Springs PGA Director of golf, will serve as an official starter on the tee, and will announce players as they approach their final green.
  • Joanna Coe, PGA: the current Section Women’s Player of the Year, inaugural Women’s PGA Professional Player of the Year, and Merion G.C. PGA director of instruction, will work alongside PGA Members to assist the ESPN and ESPN+ crews on their broadcast commentary.
  • Scott Chisholm, PGA: the Rolling Green G.C. PGA head professional is in attendance this week as Braden Shattuck’s PGA coach, helping him prepare to compete in his first major championship.

About the Philadelphia PGA Section
The Philadelphia PGA Section, covering eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware, is one of 41 geographical managing entities of the PGA of America. This Section manages nearly 900 PGA Members and Associates who are employed at over 590 golf facilities in our region.

Contact: Matt Frey, PGA, Communications Director,