Industry News

PGA of America Golf Professional Bernie Najar earns PGA Master Professional designation

FRISCO, Texas (October 5, 2023) – The PGA of America has announced that Bernie Najar, PGA, Director of Instruction at Caves Valley Golf Club in Owings Mills, Maryland, has earned PGA Master Professional status, the highest educational designation a PGA of America Member can obtain.

The PGA of America is composed of more than 29,000 PGA of America Golf Professionals, and Najar, a Member of the Middle Atlantic PGA Section, joins a special group as the 439th PGA of America Golf Professional to earn PGA Master Professional status. He achieved his designation in Teaching and Coaching.

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The PGA Master Professional Program is available to those with at least 10 years of PGA Membership along with achieving advanced certification through the PGA Certified Professional Program. The curriculum includes an extensive project based on the specific certification previously acquired by the PGA of America Golf Professional. PGA Master Professional status is earned upon successful completion of the presentation.

The PGA Master Professional program was established in 1969 to recognize PGA of America Members who make a significant effort to improve as golf professionals and maintain the highest degree of excellence for themselves and their operations. The program is designed to ensure golf professionals are prepared to meet the growing demands of the marketplace within the Executive Management, Golf Operations and Teaching and Coaching Designations.

"This year, I received my Quarter Century Membership status within the PGA of America, which was a signal to me that it was good timing to become a PGA Master Professional," said Najar. "We are blessed to have so many great men and women in our Association who have done so much for the game. I think it's surreal to be a part of the Master Professional group. I'm honored to be a part of it, and to do it at the Home of the PGA of America in Frisco and see what has been done here, it's incredible. I try to push myself to represent my family and the Association at the highest level, to lead by example with those I mentor back home and to be the best golf professional I can be. I know this is the best program to fulfill those goals."

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A 1994 graduate of American University where he earned a BSBA in Finance, Najar is recognized as one of the top instructors in both the Baltimore-Washington D.C. area and the nation. He is ranked as one of Golf Digest's 50 Best Teachers, and the No. 1 Teacher in Maryland, as well as Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Teachers. A decorated PGA of America Golf Professional, he is a multi-time winner of both of the Middle Atlantic PGA Section’s top teaching honors, including Teacher of the Year in 2004, 2014 and 2022, and the Player Development Award in 2011 and 2012. 

Elected to PGA Membership in 1998, Najar has taught students at every level of the game, from beginners to aspiring tour players. He has served as the Caves Valley Director of Instruction since 2012. His students have gone on to earn dozens of Division I golf scholarships and have won numerous club championships across the Middle Atlantic. 

Najar resides in Bethesda, Maryland, with his wife Jennifer and his stepdaughter Amelia Gogarty.


About the PGA of America

The PGA of America is one of the world’s largest sports organizations, composed of more than 29,000 PGA of America Golf Professionals who love the game, are expert coaches, operators and business leaders, and work daily to drive interest and participation in the sport. The PGA of America owns and operates numerous championships and events, including major championships for men, women, seniors and the Ryder Cup, one of the world’s foremost sporting events. For more information, visit and follow us on X, formerly known as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Media Contacts:  
Jesse Dodson, PGA of America,, 801-995-0684
Jared Minski, Mastro Communications,, 732-546-4325