Olympic Club’s Erika Corradi Selected as General Chair of the 2021 U.S. Women’s Open Championship
Even though the 2020 edition is still several weeks away, the 2021 U.S. Women’s Open Championship is quickly approaching (less than 8 months to go!). We’re so lucky the championship will be held right here in Northern California at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, and NCGA Board Committee Member Erika Corradi has been selected as the general chair for the historic championship. We sat down (virtually of course!) with Erika to hear more about the planning, how it’s been affected by recent events, and what we can expect.
Q: General Chair. What exactly does that entail?
As chair of this event, I am the point person from the club’s side for championship logistics, and work closely with the USGA on major decisions that impact the role Olympic Club plays as host. The USGA has had staff members here in San Francisco for close to two years, and I act as their main point of contact and liaison with others from the club who are intimately involved in preparations.
Q: It’s been an odd year to say the least, but what have been the most rewarding moments so far?
Launching the volunteer program, and seeing how many of my fellow Olympians jumped at the chance to be a part of this historic championship; it was incredible. Another gratifying part of the volunteer experience is that we have had a record turnout of women. We know it isn’t surprising since women’s golf is so vibrant in Northern California. But we have impressed the USGA!
Q: As the role unfolded, what have been some of the most challenging moments?
Apologies if this is obvious, but the pandemic! As the world deals with tough issues it’s never dealt with before, we’ve tried to take the right approach in how to handle championship preparations. We understand there are people going through hardships, and we want to be sensitive to that. At the same time, we hear frequently that golf has been such a great outlet from the stresses of everyday life, and we know this championship is an inspiration and form of entertainment to so many people. So juggling that has been tough, but we feel good about how we’ve handled everything that’s been thrown at us so far.
Q: What about the Olympic Club makes this a great venue for this Championship?
First and foremost, the golf course! It will provide such a great platform for the best golfers in the world, and I can’t wait to see them compete on a course I know so well. The USGA has told me how excited the players are to come here; and that, in turn, makes us excited as well. Secondly, the Olympic Club has such a long history with the USGA. So many incredible and historic USGA moments have happened here, and now we get to stage a women’s championship for the first time. It doesn’t get better than that!
Q: Overall, what are you most excited about?
There is something special about watching the pros play on a course one knows so intimately; you know the sidehill lies, the pull of the Lake, the indiscernible breaks in the greens. I’m most excited for all the golfers in Northern California who have played the Olympic Club to see it under these circumstances. They’ll see how their games measure up to the best of the best and ultimately, we’ll all see how the world’s best women stand up to the challenge of the Olympic Club Lake Course. The woman who holds up the U.S. Women’s Open trophy on Sunday will be a very deserving champion.