A day on the job with Lane Singleton, the man in charge of keeping the Reynolds golf courses in shape

It’s 5:30 in the morning and Lane Singleton is wide awake. As usual. “I have always been a morning person,” says the 39-year-old father of eight. Well, really father of only two—daughter Jacy, 10, and son Carter, 3—if you don’t count the six golf courses at Reynolds Lake Oconee that Singleton, the community’s Vice President of Agronomy, considers his other children.

“The golf courses are my extended family,” he says. “They are all living, breathing things. You see them every day. You see them through the ups and you see them through the downs. The days are never boring.” 

By 7 o’clock, Singleton’s dark green Ford 250 Super Duty pickup—which he affectionately calls “my office”—is parked outside the golf maintenance building at The Landing, a Reynolds community with many younger families like the Singletons, who moved there earlier this year.

Inside his real office, Singleton’s administrative chores are similar to those of a college coach. The two jobs are alike in that they both are running a number of different “programs” (each course has its own needs, much as the offense, defense, and special teams are working on different things), and depending on assistants (each course has its own staff ) to manage on a more granular level and manage a large number of “players” (in the peak summer season, up to 175 on staff ).

For the next three hours, he catches up on emails, checks a few resumes—“We’re always looking to find the best people to come here”— speaks with individuals on a variety of issues, reviews the agronomic programs for all six courses, and fields phone calls from people both down the street and around the country.

“I get to touch so many people’s lives in this job; it’s incredible,” Singleton says, “from the people here who are so passionate about the work they do, to everyone who plays our golf courses. I get to meet people from all walks of life. The personal relationships I have made will last forever.”

Around 10:30, it’s time to “start beating the streets,” making his daily check of each course, where he touches base with the respective superintendent or assistant superintendent. Singleton has been on both sides of these meetings, since he came up through the agronomic ranks during his first 13 years at Reynolds, taking over as head man in late 2012.

Just before noon, he goes for a workout, both to maintain his physical strength—which has been known to result in driving par fours—and keep him mentally energized. He’s done in less than an hour, stops to pick up a salad at The Landing, and heads back to the office to eat lunch while catching up on more emails and phone calls. He’s back on “the beat” by 1.

Throughout the day, he is filling in “The List,” a schedule of everything he has to do, and that he knows he will never completely finish. “Some of them are written down; some are in my mind. Seems like time just goes by faster and faster.” 

As do his afternoons. There doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day, but at 6 p.m. it’s time to head home, where wife Keetah, the “other” kids, and two black labs get all his attention. “The List” will still be there tomorrow, as will Lane Singleton. At 5:30 in the morning.

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