Evans Prairie - Staff

Brian Linton PGA Certified Professional & Facility Manager

Hometown: Bay Head, New Jersey

Growing up in a small New Jersey town, a life as golf professional was the furthest thing from my mind. Long days at the beach and many hours training on the soccer fields, golf was not part of my life until my junior year of college. The first time I played golf, I have to admit I was hooked, as this game posed so many challenges and no two rounds were ever the same. Upon graduating from Rutgers University with a degree in Economics, and a short stint with Smith Barney in Manhattan, I gave up my Park Avenue office for a life as a Golf Professional. My new career started at a small private club, not far from my home, called Manasquan River Golf Club. From there, my career to me to some fantastic facilities which included Plainfield Country Club, Ocean Reef, Pinehurst Resort and Duke University, until I found my way to the Head Golf Professional position at Black Diamond Ranch in Lecanto, Florida. The last three years of my career was spent as the Director of Golf at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables. Each and every one of these facilities provided me with new opportunities, challenges, and enriching experiences.

One of the wonderful advantages of this profession has been all the interesting and wonderful people that I have had the opportunity to meet, play golf, and become friends with. This list includes some great golf professionals as well as professional athletes, movie stars and politicians. Some of the members of this list include Dan Marino, Bret Hull, Alonzo Mourning, Ed Reed, Jimmie Johnson, Bob Griese, Governor Jeb Bush, and President George W Bush.

One of the highlights of my professional career would have to include the opportunity I had to spend the day on the golf course with President George W Bush and Governor Jeb Bush at The Biltmore Hotel in 2009. Aside from a great day of golf on the course, my favorite memory was the 20-25 minutes that I spent alone with the president on the driving range (guarded by the secret service of course). I watched him hit some balls, and our conversation was as normal as any I have had all my life. He wanted to know about where I grew up, my family, clubs I have worked at, among other things. The burning memory I still have to this day, is the sincerity he displayed in showing interest in my life story, and this is something that I will never forget and will always respect. The only regret from that day was that my wife and kids were at our house in Citrus County and were not able to meet him as well. He made sure though that his assistant had some souvenirs waiting for me at the end of our round that I could give to my daughters.

When away from the club, I enjoy spending time with my wife Kacie, and my two beautiful daughters, Abigail and Hanna. My hobbies and interests include playing the drums, playing soccer, watching my girls play soccer, reading and music.

Michael BerryAssistant Manager - Inside

Hometown: Flint, Michigan;

I was born in Flint, Michigan where I lived for 33½ years. Graduated from Flint Northern High School after which I served in the USN as a ships servicemen aboard the USS Shasta AE-33. I worked for General Motors in Flint at AC Spark Plug for 13½ years before transferring to the Saturn plant in Spring Hill, TN. I served out the rest of my 30 year sentence with GM at Saturn. Retired from GM and moved to the Villages the same year.

I live in the village of Country Club Hills, (The Historic Side), with my wife Ruth of 36 years. We have 2 children, Susan and Donovan also 1 beautiful granddaughter, Chance. She has grandpa wrapped around her finger. We have been here for 8 years and love living in The Villages. I enjoy playing golf and I am a big Michigan State football fan, "Go Spartans". In my quiet time I enjoy cross stitching which I have done since I was 15 years old and I am a member of North Lake Presbyterian Church.

Marv LessinAssistant Manager - Inside

Hometown: Wilmington, Delaware

I was born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware. I am divorced and have two wonderful daughters, Lisa and Laurie. I moved to The Villages in 2004 to the village of Piedmont and am currently living in the village of Buttonwood. My adult life was spent working for the Delaware Air National Guard for thirty-five (35) years (each day of which I looked out my window and wished I was golfing). I retired on the first day I was eligible and went to work at a local municipal golf course, where I quickly realized when you work in the golf business you actually play even less. Despite this, after 12 years in the business, I can still say that I have never looked outside and wished I was back at my old job!!

James MuleAssistant Manager - Inside

Hometown: 

Prior to retirement, Jim was a Chief Information Officer at one of the GE Capital businesses. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Information Systems with a minor in mathematics from State University of New York and a Master of Science in Management of Technology from Southern Polytechnic State University in Georgia. Jim also has a Florida real estate license and an Electrical Contractors license in Georgia.

Jim is the author of the book "The Path of Least Resistance" and composer of two piano CDs, "Take My Hand" and "Believe." Jim's spare time outside of work is occupied with writing music, golf and cycling.

Larry AndersonAssistant Manager - Outside

Hometown:  

Prior to moving to The Villages, I spent my entire life in Central Illinois (within 100 miles of Springfield). After college, I worked 34 years with various State and National financial institutions, from small community banks to multi-state regional corporations. During that time, I held various positions from teller to CEO. I attended the Graduate School of Banking in Madison, WI, held various financial licenses in Illinois and passed the requirements to earn a designation of Certified Financial Planner.

I am married to Sue and we have two grown children. Sue and I moved to The Villages (Largo) in 2013. I was at Havana Country Club prior to joining Evans Prairie. We both play golf and like to visit different areas in Central Florida when time permits. In addition, we are trying to experience various clubs and activities that are available on a daily basis, here in The Villages.

Loch ReidyAssistant Manager - Outside

Hometown: Douglaston, NY.

I was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. At the age of seven my family moved to Douglaston, Queens, N.Y. Douglaston is on Little Neck bay, the western end of Long Island Sound. I spent many years sailing and racing sailboat out of the Douglaston Yacht Club. I attended Bayside High School and Pace College (now University) studying Finance and Accounting. While in college I was drafted into the U.S. Army, completed Military Police school and was stationed in Georgia and Berlin, Germany.

I settled in New Milford Conn, after being discharged and completed a thirty year career with The Southern New England Telephone Company and the SBC Corporation. I started my Telco career as a technician and retired as a second level Manager. During my time in Conn., I was able to reacquaint myself with sailing and made 15 passages to or from Bermuda. The 16th passage ended in disaster and a book was written about it ("Overboard"}.

My wife (Sandy) and I reside in the Village of Gilchrist. We have two daughters, no grandchildren yet.

Thomas VailTournament Liaison

Hometown: Hemet, CA.

I was born in Oceanside, California on USMC Base Camp Pendleton. I grew up in Southern California mainly in the Hemet area. After 36 years I retired from The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California in 2011 as an Engineering Technician. I have a Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from The University of Phoenix - class of 2002.

My wife Debbie and I moved to The Villages in February 2012 and we couldn't be happier. We do a lot gardening and work around our home. I like to tinker and work in my garage. Debbie has her book/movie club and her pine straw basket weaving club. Together we have 7 grand kids ranging in age from 24 to 2, no great grands yet.

I am addicted to the game of golf and love to play and work in and about the game. I love the competition that comes with this crazy game, but most of all I enjoy the comradery that comes from playing a great sport here in this great town we call home. I really enjoy working as a Tournament Liaison, and I think Evans Prairie has an exceptional staff.

I have made a lot of new friends and acquaintances since coming here. I look forward to meeting new residents and fellow players; I am a frog with a putter in hand ... here till I croak.