Industry News

John Farrell named director of sports operations at The Sea Pines Resort

Long-time vice president of sports and operations Cary Corbitt to retire

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (March 29, 2021) – A changing of the guard is underway at one of the country’s best-known golf resorts.  Following a 44-year career at The Sea Pines Resort, Vice President of Sports and Operations Cary Corbitt is passing the reins to long-time Director of Golf John Farrell.  Corbitt’s retirement date is May 14, after which Farrell will assume the duties and become the Resort’s Director of Sports Operations.

“Cary has done an amazing job during the past four decades improving, expanding and enhancing every aspect of our golf and tennis operations.  All three of our championship golf courses have been rebuilt under Cary’s leadership and two new award-winning golf clubhouses have been constructed.  He has also established a great partnership with the Smith Stearns Tennis Academy.  We are so appreciative of Cary’s contributions to our resort and the community during his tenure,” said Steve Birdwell, President of The Sea Pines Resort.

Cary Corbitt [l] — John Farrell [r]

Corbitt joined The Sea Pines Resort in 1977 as a golf professional at the original Plantation Club.  Since then, he has served in various capacities within the resort and for the past 28 years, Corbitt has overseen sports, retail and resort operations, as well as special projects including golf course and clubhouse renovations, the creation of the Pete Dye Room in the Harbour Town Clubhouse, and the Resort’s involvement with the PGA TOUR’s annual RBC Heritage golf tournament each spring.  In the community and golf industry, Corbitt serves as president of the Lowcountry Golf Course Owners’ Association and is past president of the Hilton Head Island Golf Professionals Association and past board member of the Carolinas Section of the PGA of America. Corbitt was also inducted into the Lowcountry Golf Hall of Fame.

Farrell will be responsible for all golf operations including golf maintenance, in addition to overseeing golf operations for the RBC Heritage, tennis operations, and the long-standing relationship with the Smith Stearns Tennis Academy.      

“Filling Cary’s shoes is a monumental task, but John is extremely qualified and well regarded in the national golf community,” added Birdwell.  “He is very passionate about golf, Sea Pines, and Hilton Head Island, and is constantly searching for ways to improve our guest service and operations to remain the premier resort on the southeast coast.”

Farrell arrived on Hilton Head Island in 1984, working at Shipyard Golf Club and Oyster Reef Golf Club before joining Sea Pines in 1989. Actively involved in the Hilton Head community, he has a special interest in promoting golf among juniors and new players. He has worked alongside Corbitt for more than 30 years while also serving as PGA advisor to the Hilton Head Junior Golf Association, on the Board of Directors of The First Tee of the Lowcountry, and as an advisor to the Hilton Head High School golf team.

A recent inductee into the Lowcountry Hall of Fame, Farrell has been honored many times, including as five-time PGA Golf Professional of the Year of the Hilton Head Chapter of the Carolinas PGA Section and two-time Carolinas PGA Section Merchandiser of the Year.

Farrell and his wife of 30 years, Jane, reside in Sea Pines and have three grown children.

For additional information about The Sea Pines Resort access the web site at

Sea Pines — Logo

About The Sea Pines Resort
Situated on the southernmost tip of Hilton Head Island, The Sea Pines Resort features 5 miles of unspoiled beaches, 20 clay tennis courts, 14 miles of biking and walking trails, horseback riding, Eco-Adventures, watersports, and the 605-acre Sea Pines Forest Preserve filled with wildflowers, wetlands and more than 130 species of birds. Guests can choose from an array of accommodations, including 300 villas, 100 rental homes and the luxurious 60-room Inn & Club at Harbour Town, a Forbes Four-Star boutique hotel and Preferred Hotel Group member. The resort’s best-in-class collection of golf courses, amenities, meeting facilities and accommodations makes Sea Pines one of the most sought-after leisure and group destinations in America.

Media Contact
Karen Moraghan
Hunter Public Relations
(908) 963-6013