By Olan Beam, Photography By John Walsh BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-feature

Bobby and Marianna Clampett are the image of success — attractive, charming, well spoken, confident. They make it look easy. But Bobby Clampett’s life illustrates the challenges you face on the way to success, what it takes to get there, understanding that you can’t get there on your own and why you must want to get there.  

Bobby Clampett grew up in the San Francisco and Monterey, Calif., areas. He was always interested in sports and usually excelled at the ones he enjoyed. However, golf was his real passion. “I was hooked on golf when I was six years old,” he said. “My family had a social membership at the Olympic Club in San Francisco. I remember going out onto the golf course with a beautiful sky, ocean in the background and majestic cypress trees, and I thought, ‘Wow, this is the coolest sport ever. I want to learn how to play!’”

Gift of a Lifetime

Unfortunately, Bobby didn’t get a chance to learn how to play golf then. Circumstances changed, Bobby’s father and mother split up, and Bobby and his mother moved to Carmel. Four years later, Bobby’s passion for golfing hadn’t diminished, and his mother bought him lessons at Quail Lodge & Country Club in nearby Carmel for a Christmas present. The cost was a stretch for the single-parent family, but Bobby’s mom, Jacqueline, was determined he learn how to play.

The relationships that gift brought about changed Bobby’s life. Bobby got his wish to learn about golf, met his teacher and would-be mentor and father figure – Lee Martin. Lee was the golf pro at Quail Lodge. “Apparently, he saw something in me I didn’t see or understand at that point,” Bobby said. “I was only 10 and determined to learn the game. I think Lee saw my passion and determination and, I hope, a little bit of potential. He also understood my family circumstances. He sent the check back to my mom and said he wanted to teach to me to play. He changed my life.”

Lee and Ed Haber, the owner of Quail Lodge, gave Bobby a membership and a job doing whatever needed to be done around the course. “I did odd jobs – anything and everything. They really gave me access, exposure to all types of players, the opportunity to compete with players better than me and time to play,” Bobby remembered.

Working to Play

For the next several years, Bobby played golf, on average, 12-14 hours a day, seven days a week, while also attending school. He competed in any and every tournament he was eligible for, and he played the most accomplished golfers he could find. “I had skill and ability, but the determination and hard work are what made me a great golfer,” Bobby said. “That is one of the key differences between good and great. You don’t get to be a professional golfer, or professional anything for that matter, without working hard and having the passion to overcome obstacles.”

Seeing Success

His passion and hard work paid off. Bobby excelled and recognition came. He played on the golf team at Brigham Young University where he was named All-American for three years. He was low amateur in the U.S. Open in 1978 and the Masters in 1979. His most exceptional accomplishment, though, was winning the Haskins Award, given to the Most Outstanding Male Collegiate Golfer of the year for two years in a row – 1979 and 1980. Other past award winners include Phil Michelson and Tiger Woods.

Bobby decided to turn professional in 1980. He was progressing well and competitive in many PGA TOUR Tournaments. He won the Southern Open and tied for third in the U.S. Open in 1982. As he had throughout his career, Bobby wasn’t satisfied with his status quo. He wanted to get better and stay at the top of his game consistently.

Does Style Mean Substance?

BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-6

Bobby testing his swing at Impact Zone Golf HQ at Bonita Springs, Fla.

In his quest to improve, Bobby began to wonder if he should consider changing his swing. “The common discussion when you meet with golf instructors is about swing style,” Bobby said. “I thought, ‘if that’s what it takes to improve, I need to consider it.’ I remember meeting with four different instructors. All four suggested very different changes. I ended up choosing the one I thought made the most sense, but my game was never the same. I thought style meant substance. I found out it didn’t.” Bobby went on to have moderate success on the PGA TOUR through 1995, but he never forgot how following the quest for the perfect style affected his game.

Bobby decided there were other ways to participate in the game he loved and still succeed. In 1991, he began a career in television broadcasting with CBS Sports while still participating on the Tour. “I enjoyed my broadcasting career,” he said. “I was able to really study the game and other players like I never had in the past. As a broadcaster and analyst, you must understand other players and how they play. It led to me achieve a far better understanding of the game and ultimately to realize the key to playing better. It wasn’t about style. Exceptional players have a variety of styles. One day it clicked for me:  it was about how they impacted the ball.”

In fact, Bobby’s realization of how to effectively impact the ball was consistent, teachable and measurable, and it led him to write a book, The Impact Zone, published in 2007. “It was incredibly motivating, recognizing I could help golfers avoid the frustration and disappointment I experienced.” Bobby said. “I cut back on my broadcasting work in 2010 and was able to apply what I’d learned on the PGA Tour Champions Tour. I knew Impact-based® instruction was my future, but I couldn’t help wanting to go on tour again. It validated all I had learned from writing The Impact Zone.”

BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-comb01

Impact Zone Golf Academy, Tiburón Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton Naples Golf Resort, Naples, Fla.

Growing a New Business Together

Bobby was not alone in his quest to re-educate the golfing public. His wife and business partner, Marianna, is as passionate about the effort as Bobby. The acceptance of the book, and the excitement they heard from golfers, led Bobby and Marianna to consider starting an Impact Zone® instructional business. “It took time to pull together the business plan and work out how, when and where to start,” Bobby explained. “The process actually drew Marianna and me even closer. She is such an outstanding business person, and we found that we not only complement each other personally but professionally as well.”

In fact, Bobby needed a savvy partner as he continued working in broadcasting and went back on the Tour in 2010. Marianna already had an accomplished career of leadership and business experience from the technology industry, including President, Americas for SAS Institute, Inc. After retiring from SAS, she built an executive coaching and consulting business. But just like Bobby’s, Marianna’s passion for golf and the opportunity to work with her spouse shifted her focus.

Impact-Zone-Golf-logoImpact Zone Golf opened in 2008 with teaching golf schools in different locations throughout the country and training new Impact Zone Certified instructors. In 2012, Impact Zone Golf expanded to include video training and accelerated its golf school teaching. It has since grown to include the Impact Zone Golf® Academy at The Tiburón Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton Naples Golf Resort. “It is hard to explain how gratifying it has been to see the effect that Impact Zone instruction can have for golfers,” Bobby said. “Some of our clients are ready to quit. One client was a retired widower whose life revolved around golf. His friends were golfers, and he played for enjoyment, exercise and as his primary social outlet. When he came to us, he told me, ‘My game has gotten so bad, my friends don’t want to play with me anymore. Nothing I do helps.’ It was heartrending. It wasn’t just a game to him. It was his life.” Bobby and the Impact Zone team helped that client and many others reacquire their relationship with the game they love.

Sharing the Impact

Bobby and Marianna enjoy seeing the improvement with each player and feel they can have a broader, longer-term impact on the game. “We are in the process of training and certifying instructors. The PGA has approved our training for their continuing education program,” Marianna said. “The beauty of this approach to instruction is that it is not about style. The method can be replicated. It is a fundamentally different approach. Impact-based instruction can be expanded so any golfer can see improvement, enjoy the game and be encouraged – instead of quitting, as many do now.”

While helping all golfers is satisfying, Bobby and Marianna have a sweet spot for those who struggle to have and maintain access to golf. “Support of others was so important to me growing up,” Bobby said. “I would not have been able to achieve what I’ve achieved without help. I feel a responsibility to support young men and women with access and encouragement, like I received.” Bobby and Marianna support First Tee, a youth development organization introducing the game of golf and its inherent values to young people. They also support a select group of young, talented golfers through their Impact Zone Golf Academy.

BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-comb02

Instructing a variety of skill levels at Impact Zone Golf Academy.

What’s Next?

Bobby and Marianna expect to continue to grow their Impact Zone Golf business for the foreseeable future. “I’m doing what I love, working with a person I love, and seeing people learn to love the game of golf again,” Bobby said. “Of course, I’m going to keep doing it!” 

Bobby and Marianna Clampett’s BB&T Wealth advisor is David Vermeulen, and their portfolio manager is Ryan Bierds.

By Olan Beam, Photography By John Walsh BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-feature

Bobby and Marianna Clampett are the image of success — attractive, charming, well spoken, confident. They make it look easy. But Bobby Clampett’s life illustrates the challenges you face on the way to success, what it takes to get there, understanding that you can’t get there on your own and why you must want to get there.  

Bobby Clampett grew up in the San Francisco and Monterey, Calif., areas. He was always interested in sports and usually excelled at the ones he enjoyed. However, golf was his real passion. “I was hooked on golf when I was six years old,” he said. “My family had a social membership at the Olympic Club in San Francisco. I remember going out onto the golf course with a beautiful sky, ocean in the background and majestic cypress trees, and I thought, ‘Wow, this is the coolest sport ever. I want to learn how to play!’”

Gift of a Lifetime

Unfortunately, Bobby didn’t get a chance to learn how to play golf then. Circumstances changed, Bobby’s father and mother split up, and Bobby and his mother moved to Carmel. Four years later, Bobby’s passion for golfing hadn’t diminished, and his mother bought him lessons at Quail Lodge & Country Club in nearby Carmel for a Christmas present. The cost was a stretch for the single-parent family, but Bobby’s mom, Jacqueline, was determined he learn how to play.

The relationships that gift brought about changed Bobby’s life. Bobby got his wish to learn about golf, met his teacher and would-be mentor and father figure – Lee Martin. Lee was the golf pro at Quail Lodge. “Apparently, he saw something in me I didn’t see or understand at that point,” Bobby said. “I was only 10 and determined to learn the game. I think Lee saw my passion and determination and, I hope, a little bit of potential. He also understood my family circumstances. He sent the check back to my mom and said he wanted to teach to me to play. He changed my life.”

Lee and Ed Haber, the owner of Quail Lodge, gave Bobby a membership and a job doing whatever needed to be done around the course. “I did odd jobs – anything and everything. They really gave me access, exposure to all types of players, the opportunity to compete with players better than me and time to play,” Bobby remembered.

Working to Play

For the next several years, Bobby played golf, on average, 12-14 hours a day, seven days a week, while also attending school. He competed in any and every tournament he was eligible for, and he played the most accomplished golfers he could find. “I had skill and ability, but the determination and hard work are what made me a great golfer,” Bobby said. “That is one of the key differences between good and great. You don’t get to be a professional golfer, or professional anything for that matter, without working hard and having the passion to overcome obstacles.”

Seeing Success

His passion and hard work paid off. Bobby excelled and recognition came. He played on the golf team at Brigham Young University where he was named All-American for three years. He was low amateur in the U.S. Open in 1978 and the Masters in 1979. His most exceptional accomplishment, though, was winning the Haskins Award, given to the Most Outstanding Male Collegiate Golfer of the year for two years in a row – 1979 and 1980. Other past award winners include Phil Michelson and Tiger Woods.

Bobby decided to turn professional in 1980. He was progressing well and competitive in many PGA TOUR Tournaments. He won the Southern Open and tied for third in the U.S. Open in 1982. As he had throughout his career, Bobby wasn’t satisfied with his status quo. He wanted to get better and stay at the top of his game consistently.

Does Style Mean Substance?
BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-6

Bobby testing his swing at Impact Zone Golf HQ at Bonita Springs, Fla.

Bobby decided there were other ways to participate in the game he loved and still succeed. In 1991, he began a career in television broadcasting with CBS Sports while still participating on the Tour. “I enjoyed my broadcasting career,” he said. “I was able to really study the game and other players like I never had in the past. As a broadcaster and analyst, you must understand other players and how they play. It led to me achieve a far better understanding of the game and ultimately to realize the key to playing better. It wasn’t about style. Exceptional players have a variety of styles. One day it clicked for me:  it was about how they impacted the ball.”

In fact, Bobby’s realization of how to effectively impact the ball was consistent, teachable and measurable, and it led him to write a book, The Impact Zone, published in 2007. “It was incredibly motivating, recognizing I could help golfers avoid the frustration and disappointment I experienced.” Bobby said. “I cut back on my broadcasting work in 2010 and was able to apply what I’d learned on the PGA Tour Champions Tour. I knew Impact-based® instruction was my future, but I couldn’t help wanting to go on tour again. It validated all I had learned from writing The Impact Zone.”

BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-comb01

Impact Zone Golf Academy, Tiburón Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton Naples Golf Resort, Naples, Fla.

Growing a New Business Together

Bobby was not alone in his quest to re-educate the golfing public. His wife and business partner, Marianna, is as passionate about the effort as Bobby. The acceptance of the book, and the excitement they heard from golfers, led Bobby and Marianna to consider starting an Impact Zone® instructional business. “It took time to pull together the business plan and work out how, when and where to start,” Bobby explained. “The process actually drew Marianna and me even closer. She is such an outstanding business person, and we found that we not only complement each other personally but professionally as well.”

In fact, Bobby needed a savvy partner as he continued working in broadcasting and went back on the Tour in 2010. Marianna already had an accomplished career of leadership and business experience from the technology industry, including President, Americas for SAS Institute, Inc. After retiring from SAS, she built an executive coaching and consulting business. But just like Bobby’s, Marianna’s passion for golf and the opportunity to work with her spouse shifted her focus.

Impact-Zone-Golf-logoImpact Zone Golf opened in 2008 with teaching golf schools in different locations throughout the country and training new Impact Zone Certified instructors. In 2012, Impact Zone Golf expanded to include video training and accelerated its golf school teaching. It has since grown to include the Impact Zone Golf® Academy at The Tiburón Golf Club at the Ritz-Carlton Naples Golf Resort. “It is hard to explain how gratifying it has been to see the effect that Impact Zone instruction can have for golfers,” Bobby said. “Some of our clients are ready to quit. One client was a retired widower whose life revolved around golf. His friends were golfers, and he played for enjoyment, exercise and as his primary social outlet. When he came to us, he told me, ‘My game has gotten so bad, my friends don’t want to play with me anymore. Nothing I do helps.’ It was heartrending. It wasn’t just a game to him. It was his life.” Bobby and the Impact Zone team helped that client and many others reacquire their relationship with the game they love.

Sharing the Impact

Bobby and Marianna enjoy seeing the improvement with each player and feel they can have a broader, longer-term impact on the game. “We are in the process of training and certifying instructors. The PGA has approved our training for their continuing education program,” Marianna said. “The beauty of this approach to instruction is that it is not about style. The method can be replicated. It is a fundamentally different approach. Impact-based instruction can be expanded so any golfer can see improvement, enjoy the game and be encouraged – instead of quitting, as many do now.”

While helping all golfers is satisfying, Bobby and Marianna have a sweet spot for those who struggle to have and maintain access to golf. “Support of others was so important to me growing up,” Bobby said. “I would not have been able to achieve what I’ve achieved without help. I feel a responsibility to support young men and women with access and encouragement, like I received.” Bobby and Marianna support First Tee, a youth development organization introducing the game of golf and its inherent values to young people. They also support a select group of young, talented golfers through their Impact Zone Golf Academy.

BBT-Perspectives-Bobby-and-Marianna-Clampett-comb02

Instructing a variety of skill levels at Impact Zone Golf Academy.

What’s Next?

Bobby and Marianna expect to continue to grow their Impact Zone Golf business for the foreseeable future. “I’m doing what I love, working with a person I love, and seeing people learn to love the game of golf again,” Bobby said. “Of course, I’m going to keep doing it!” 

Bobby and Marianna Clampett’s BB&T Wealth advisor is David Vermeulen, and their portfolio manager is Ryan Bierds.

Bobby and Marianna Clampett are transforming the way golf is taught and learned. Impact-Based® teaching options include private instruction, golf schools, on-course playing instruction and online learning.

Learn more at impactzonegolf.com