Sep 14, 1947
Carmel, Indiana


If a golf architect is going to learn the craft there are few better people to work for than legendary designers Pete Dye and Jack Nicklaus.

Lee Schmidt got the best of both men.

After graduating from Purdue University in 1970, Schmidt went to work for Dye, building courses like Casa De Campo in the Dominican Republic. A 12-year stint at Landmark Land Company -- where he led the design team on the Stadium Course at PGA West in La Quinta, Calif. -- was followed by seven years at Nicklaus Design.

In 1997 Schmidt helped found Schmidt-Curley Design and operating out of the southwestern United States. But Schmidt-Curley has become a worldwide business, particularly in the Asian market. They've built golf courses in Thailand, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and China, all while still producing great layouts in the United States like Southern Dunes Golf Club in Maricopa, Ariz. and Oak Harbor in Slidell, La.

"I am proud of how we at Schmidt-Curley Design, in a small way, have helped grow the game in other parts of the world," Schmidt said. "In just 20 years the growth of golf throughout Asia has been amazing."

The interesting thing about Schmidt is that his courses are not defined by a single characteristic or thought process. Google "Lee Schmidt golf course characteristics" and there's not one story that sums up what Schmidt thinks when he looks at a piece of property. Instead, he and Brian Curley use what's given and asked of them, which is why they've built such diverse courses. Southern Dunes, for example, is a links-style layout while PGA West is marked by towering palm trees and glistening water hazards.

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Lee E. Schmidt Designed Courses Map

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