“To make the ultimate marriage between PGA golf instruction and the custom building of golf equipment by certified golf club builders. One can not be separated from the other.”
Gary grew up in Pontiac, Michigan where he played in many junior, state and college golf tournaments. At the age of 9 Gary’s father Tom Balliet would give him .50 cents and a packed lunch and dropped Gary off at Bald Mountain Golf Club in Lake Orion, Michigan. The drop off time was 5:30am before the pro shop opened. Gary would help Ken Wilson – the golf pro- with odds and ends and intern he would allow Gary to play and practice for FREE. Gary also caddied at Bloomfield Hills Country Club and Forrest lake Country Club. He has a degree in education from the University of Michigan where he was very fortunate to be elected captain of the golf team in 1971 by his team mates. Gary said, “my times in Michigan were the most memorable in my life. I have lived in Arizona since 1976 where my professional career and becoming a PGA Member have resulted in exiting times in the business of golf. Being exposed to golf in Michigan opened up many doors in the golf business once I arrived in the Valley of the Suns.” Gary has always been interested in playing golf but his love for teaching golf to others and building, fitting and repairing golf equipment has been special. Arizona Hall of Fame PGA Golf Professional Bill Farkas made sure all his assistant pros knew how to make and repair old wooded clubs-Gary learned quickly! I first started as one of his assistant golf pros at Maryvale Golf Couse in Phoenix. Mr. Farkas taught me much of what I have learned about fitting and repairing golf clubs. My newly learned skill opened the door into the Golf Academy of America which is approaching 22 years. I throw out a special thankyou to the state of Michigan, were I was born to Tom and Betty Balliet, The Michigan Publinx Golf association where I learned to compete, the University of Michigan which made me a little smarted, Bill Farkas, my professional golf mentor and the Golf Academy of America. Each step along the way gave me the opportunity to teach students and golfers from around the world how to play, teach others how to teach and allowed me to enjoy this great game God has given us – GOLF!