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MARK MACDONALD GOLF ACADEMY

COACHES

The Mark MacDonald Golf Academy

COACH MARK MACDONALD

Mark MacDonald is an accomplished player, a great teacher, and he has experience coaching at the highest level. His unique skill set, intelligence, and personality help golfers realize their full potential!

Mark is originally from Dublin, Ohio, where he competed at Dublin Jerome High School. Over the course of his four years, he helped lead the Celtics to two OHSAA Division I state titles as well as two runner-up finishes.

Mark attended Miami University where he helped lead the RedHawks for four seasons. He was a two-time Cleveland/Srixon Academic All-American and graduated from Miami with a degree in Integrated Mathematics and a minor in Decision Sciences.

After graduation, Mark decided to turn professional and played successfully on various Professional Tours for two years. He also had the opportunity to coach his alma mater and eagerly jumped at the opportunity. In his first season, he helped the RedHawks win their first MAC Championship in 19 years, which earned an at large bid to the NCAA Regionals. Over the course of his time coaching, his players earned honors of First Team All-MAC, Miami Athlete of the Year, MAC All-Tournament Team, MAC Freshman of the Year, All-Midwest Region Team, and numerous conference players of the week. In his final year at Miami, the team had three individual wins as well as one team victory.

 

Since coaching at Miami, Mark has devoted his time to helping elite-level junior golfers accomplish their dreams of playing golf in college and beyond. In addition to helping them with their game, he has also helped them and their families navigate the complex college recruiting process. Mark has successfully managed this process for players who have gone on to play at schools such as Penn State University, University of Kentucky, Xavier University, University of Dayton, Santa Clara University, Wittenberg University, Ohio University, Wright State, and more! 

 

At the start of 2019, Mark became the Player Development Manager at Heritage Club in Mason, Ohio. This role allows Mark the opportunity to assist a wide array of players and ability levels. 

 

As a player and coach, Mark is fortunate to have worked with, studied under, or learned from some of the best names in the coaching world who have helped shape him, his knowledge of the game, and how he coaches. These include:
 

  • Jason Carbone, Director of Instruction at Baltusrol

  • Josh Manning, Head Golf Professional at TCC at Muirfield Village

  • Don Sargent, Director of Instruction at Scioto Country Club

  • Joe Mayo, Director of Instruction at TPC Summerlin

  • Jeff Smith, PGA Tour Coach, TPC Summerlin

  • Jon Sinclair, Jon Sinclair Golf

  • Andrew Rice, Top 50 Coach in America

  • Dana Dahlquist, PGA Tour Coach

  • Chris Como, Director of Instruction at Dallas National - Former  PGA Tour Coach to Tiger Woods

  • Mike Shannon, PGA Tour Putting Coach

  • James Ridyard, Short Game Coach to Francesco Molinari

  • Jeff Pierce, Director of Instruction at Olde Stone - Putting Coach to Brooks Koepka

  • Martin Chuck, Tour Striker Golf

  • Grant Waite, PGA Tour Player, and Coach

  • Scott Fawcett, PGA Tour Course Management Coach

  • Dr. Morris Pickens, PGA Tour Sports Psychologist 

  • Dr. Sasho MacKenzie, World Renown Golf Biomechanist

  • Dr. Young-Hoo Kwon, World Renown Golf Biomechanist

 

College Golf Coaches who have impacted Mark:
 

  • Casey Lubahn, Head Men’s Golf Coach at Michigan State

  • Zac Zedrick, Head Men’s Golf Coach at Miami University

  • Pat Goss, Director of Golf at Northwestern University

  • Doug Martin, Head Men’s Golf Coach at University of Cincinnati

  • Brad Sparling, Former Assistant Coach at Duke University and The Ohio State University

  • Mike Small, Head Men’s Golf Coach at University of Illinois

Mark lives in Liberty Township, Ohio, with his wife Cassie and kids Noah, Luke, and Rose.

Contact Mark: mark@markmacdonaldgolf.com

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COACH ASHLEY THOMAS

With 15 years of experience in the golf industry, Ashley Thomas is a distinguished Class A PGA Professional and a proud Cincinnati native. Her golf journey began at Oasis Golf Club, followed by a role at Kenwood Country Club, where she discovered her passion for teaching and coaching. She later served as a full-time instructor at Spencer Golf Academy before joining GOLFTEC in 2017. At GOLFTEC, Ashley's exceptional coaching skills earned her the National Coach of the Year award in 2021!

 

Ashley has been recognized as a Golf Digest Top Teacher in Ohio from 2021-2025 and is an eight-time Southern Ohio PGA Ladies Section Champion. Her competitive spirit was nurtured during her college years at Kent State University and as a three-time individual qualifier for the OHSAA tournament during her high school career.

Known for her ability to teach golfers of all skill levels, Ashley emphasizes simplicity, enjoyment, and effective results in her lessons, making her a highly respected instructor.

 

Ashley resides in Loveland, OH, with her husband, Mike, who is also a PGA member, and their daughter, Ava.

Contact Ashley: ashley@markmacdonaldgolf.com

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COACH CHRIS SCHERDEN

Chris recently made the exciting move from Wyoming to Cincinnati, Ohio, to further his golf career. Throughout his journey, Chris has had the privilege of working with and learning from some of the best coaches in various sports. A highly decorated multi-sport athlete in his youth, Chris chose to focus on his studies rather than pursue collegiate sports.

After earning a degree in Business Management from the University of Wyoming, Chris followed his passion for golf instruction. He trained under the renowned Hank Haney, Tiger Woods' former golf instructor, and became an Associate Swing Instructor in 2013.

Since moving to Cincinnati, Chris has gained valuable experience as a Manager at Miles of Golf, a Coach for the PGA Junior League and PGA Junior Camps, and as the Assistant Golf Professional at TPC River's Bend. Chris is dedicated to helping his students not only improve their golf swing but also cultivate a positive attitude, gratitude, and a constructive outlook in all aspects of life.

With his fun and outgoing coaching style, Chris brings a breath of fresh air to golf instruction. He looks forward to helping all his students progress both on and off the golf course!

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COACH JD FLETCHER

JD is currently the Head Men’s Golf Coach at Miami University and was the former assistant golf coach at Carnegie Mellon University and director of player development at The Pittsburgh Field Club.

In his first season at CMU, Fletcher contributed to the development of three PING All-America selections, along with four All-Region and three All-University Athletic Association (UAA) honorees, including the UAA Player of the Year and UAA Rookie of the Year.

Fletcher has been the Director of Player Development at the renowned Pittsburgh Field Club, one of the region's top courses. His duties include conducting lessons, fittings, and clinics for the membership using launch monitor technology such as Foresight GC Quad and Trackman. 


 

Prior to being in Pittsburgh, Fletcher also served as a professional caddy at the Muirfield Village Golf Club from 2015 to 2019. His caddying experience also includes working with Patrick Flavin at the Korn Ferry Tour finals event in December 2019 at Orange County National Golf Center in Winter Garden, Florida, where he helped Flavin card a seven-under for the event.
 
Fletcher played collegiately at Miami University, where he was a four-year member of the men's golf team. He competed in 11 events and one MAC Championship during his collegiate career and was a Top 25 finisher at the 2017 Ohio Amateur.

He continues to play competitively and made the cut at the 2019 West Penn Open with rounds of 71 and 73.

 

During his time at Miami, Fletcher worked as a Strength and Conditioning Intern for the RedHawks, and completed an internship with Play Golf in College. He graduated from Miami in May 2019 with a bachelor's degree in sports leadership and management, with a minor in coaching.

Prior to his time at Miami, Fletcher was a three-time Division 1 OHSAA team state champion. His high school accolades include the 2014 Ohio Capital Conference (OCC) Player of the Year, three-time First-Team All-OCC, two-time Second Team All-District, and the Archie Griffin Sportsmanship Award Winner.

Contact JD: jd@markmacdonaldgolf.com

**JD is not allowed to coach 9th-12th graders due to NCAA rules**

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