Alexandria, VA – Club Management magazine has named Boris Gradina, MCM, CCE, the 2023 Club Executive of the Year. A 17-year member of the Club Management Association of America (CMAA), Gradina currently serves as the General Manager/Chief Executive Officer of Maryland Golf and Country Clubs (MGCC) in Bel Air, MD.
Gradina has more than 26 years of experience in the club industry. His first management role in the club industry was the Clubhouse Manager/Assistant Manager of Lebanon Country Club in Lebanon, PA. Prior to joining Maryland Golf and Country Clubs in 2015, he served as the General Manager of Sylvania Country Club in Sylvania, OH, from 2010 to 2015.
Gradina values professional development for himself and his club team. He earned his Certified Club Manager (CCM) designation in 2012 and his Certified Chief Executive (CCE) designation in 2017. In 2020, he became the 23rd individual to attain the Master Club Manager (MCM) designation. His monograph, Employee Onboarding at Private Clubs, explores the topic of onboarding practices from 10 highly regarded and well-known private clubs along with selected leading hospitality establishments.
Abigail Fry shared about his impact as a mentor “One of the most remarkable aspects of Boris’ leadership style is his commitment to foster a positive and inclusive workplace culture. He supports the well-being of employees, encourages professional growth, and prioritizes diversity and inclusion. Under his guidance, MGCC became a place where employees feel valued, motivated, and empowered to perform at their best.”
Joseph T. Bradley, Chairman of the Board of Governors, Maryland Golf and Country Clubs, Inc., explained his impact on the club culture, “For Boris—people and education are the foundational elements of progress. Boris’ enthusiasm for his team, the dedication to his craft, and his love for the industry is, quite simply, contagious.”
Gradina has been active in several CMAA Chapters. Most recently, he served the Greater Baltimore Chapter as Chapter President and Vice President from 2017 to 2021. Current Chapter Vice President Richard Marr explains his involvement, “Boris was also responsible for stabilizing the governance of the GBCMA Chapter, leaving the Chapter office much better than when he entered office. In 2020, Boris developed an onboarding strategy, which he continues to teach to other managers and chapters as to the modern best practices in onboarding new staff. To this day, Boris offers to chair the Chapter’s nominating committee, host Chapter workshops, and offers sound advice to me and the other Chapter officers, whenever needed.”
Annually, Club Management recognizes outstanding professionalism and club leadership with the Club Executive of the Year Award. Created in 1985 and originally known as the Club Manager of the Year, the award was re-titled in 2008 to mirror the evolution of the profession. This prestigious honor is presented to a club management professional who embodies professionalism within their club and community within the past one to three years—embracing mentoring, creating a supportive club culture, and impacting their local CMAA Chapter through sustained engagement. Nominations are accepted in early fall, and selections are made by a diverse committee of club management professionals.
Gradina is the 37th club management professional to be honored through this award. He will be featured in the January/February 2024 issue of Club Management magazine, profiled in a forthcoming edition of the Let’s Talk Club Management Podcast, and honored in person at the 2024 CMAA World Conference and Club Business Expo in Las Vegas, NV.
Learn more at cmaa.org/news/award-programs/.
Founded in 1927, the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) is the largest professional association for managers of membership clubs with more than 7,500 members throughout the US and internationally. Our members contribute to the success of more than 2,500 country, golf, athletic, city, faculty, military, town, and yacht clubs. The objectives of the Association are to promote relationships between club management professionals and other similar professions; to encourage the education and advancement of members; and to provide the resources needed for efficient and successful club operations. Under the covenants of professionalism, education, leadership, and community, CMAA continues to extend its reach as the leader in the club management practice. CMAA is headquartered in Alexandria, VA, with 40 professional chapters and more than 40 student chapters and colonies. Learn more at cmaa.org.
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