Leading design associate elevates to partner with longtime mentor  

JUPITER, Florida – Leading golf course architect John Sanford, a past president of the American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA), has formed a new partnership with longtime design associate David Ferris. The new Jupiter, Florida-based firm is now called Sanford Ferris Golf Course Design.

Ferris, also a member of the ASGCA since 2020, has been a fixture for Sanford Golf Design since 1997, having earned a Master’s Degree in Landscape Architecture at Cornell University, which also included studying under renowned golf course architect Tom Doak. 

After graduating Cornell, Ferris was the recipient of the Donald Ross Society Internship Award and was on site for the construction of Michael Hurdzan’s Widow’s Walk Golf Course, America’s first Environmental Demonstration Course. 

“Designing golf courses has been a ‘labor of love’ and being alongside and learning from John for nearly 25 years has been a truly amazing experience,” said Ferris. “To now become partners with my mentor and begin this next chapter of our careers taking our architecture knowledge and philosophies to design and reimagine golf facilities in the 21stcentury is very exciting.” 

From 2006 – 2019, Ferris also served on the American Society of Landscape Architects – Florida Chapter Executive Committee. Under his leadership, the organization re-established ties with state university programs and developed new relationships with the Florida Greenways and Trails organizations.

Ferris, who has also authored the book on John Sanford, ‘No Risk, No Reward’-Adventures of a Golf Course Architect, brings a diverse background and expertise in all phases of golf course architecture – new course design, renovations, restorations, site analysis, master planning, and routings.

“For the past 25 years David has been part of the fabric of Sanford Golf Design and a true professional in our business,” said John Sanford. “His dedication and passion for course design has made it possible for Sanford Golf Design to remain relevant through the ups and downs of our competitive industry. I could not be happier to partner with David, and very much look forward to the next 25 years.” 

Both Sanford and Ferris have already collaborated on several high-profile golf course projects like Granite Links Golf Club, Pointe West, Juliette Falls, Madinat Makadi, Taba Heights, Hacienda Bay, and Caguas Real. Renovation projects have included Hunters Run CC, Vero Beach CC, Spring Run GC, Wilderness CC, Duxbury Yacht Club, and Eastpointe CC. They have also collaborated with the Nicklaus organization on Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point, Banyan Cay, Naples Beach Hotel, and Palm Hills.

Most recently, the duo created an innovative reversible nine-hole course at Sailfish Sands, the municipal golf facility operated by Martin County, Florida. The reversible nines are laid out over 60 acres and can be played as 18 different holes. The Sands 9 Black course plays clockwise while the Sands 9 Gold course plays counterclockwise, rotating weekly. 

They have also completed the first phase of a Donald Ross green restoration project for North Fork Country Club in Cutchogue, New York. Other upcoming renovation projects for the firm include Water Oak Country Club in Lady Lake, Florida and the Cavalry Club in Manlius, New York, The Great Outdoors, Titusville, Florida, and Indian Hills CC, Huntington, New York.

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