Jim McLean - Biography

By Jim McLean

A Brief History

The Director of Golf, Doral Golf Resort and Spa in Miami, Florida and the Director of Instruction for KSL Properties.

Jim is the owner of the Jim McLean Golf Schools which include: Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami, Florida, PGA WEST in La Quinta, California, La Quinta Resort in La Quinta, California, and Grand Traverse Resort in Traverse City, Michigan. Jim also has a golf academy in Weston Hills in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

Jim has been the South Florida Section Junior Golf Leader (2000) and has won the following PGA awards: 2003 PGA Horton Smith (So. Florida) Award, 1996 and 1998 PGA South Florida Section Teacher of the Year, 1994 PGA National Teacher of the Year, 1987 Metropolitan PGA Horton Smith Award, and 1986 Metropolitan PGA Teacher of the Year. Inducted into the Pacific Northwest Hall of Fame in 2003.

He is a member of the professional advisory staff with: Kasco Corp,GolfLink.com, The Greg Norman Collection, Swing Solutions and Harrison Shafts and the author of over 20 top selling instructional books, videos and CD-Rom's.

Jim is probably best known for his research on the golf swing and his work on The X Factor, which describes in detail, body motions, body angles and body positions. He is also the founder of the 8-Step Swingsm teaching system. The Eight Step video is the all time best selling video on The Golf Channel and the all time #1 golf DVD in America. Jim's "Eight Step Swing" book was ranked by Sports Illustrated as one of the top golf instruction books of the 20th century (ranked #11). "The Golf Swing: Ben Hogan" video has won 6 major awards (3 Aurora awards in 2000 and 3 Telly awards in 2001) - the most of any golf video in history.

Jim's playing achievements include being one of the few people to qualify for the US Junior, the US Amateur (4 times) the US Open (2 times) and the US Senior Open and has also been a contestant in the Masters (where he made the cut). Winner of the Northwest Open and 3 time winner of the Pacific Northwest Amateur. Jim was the Pacific Coast Amateur Champion (at Olympic, San Francisco) winner of the National Skins Game Pro-Am (seen on ESPN $61,000), winner of the Westchester PGA and runner-up at the Metropolitan PGA Championship. Jim has qualified for the National Club Pro Championships ten times. Jim was an All-American at the University of Houston and when he left the team, it had won 12 of 16 NCAA's and finished 2nd in the other four. He was winner of more than 50 Junior and Amateur Titles in the Pacific Northwest. Jim was also named 1st alternate to the US World Cup Team in 1972. He played the PGA Tour during the winter of 1982.

Jim's professional achievements include: National PGA Teaching Committee Member, National PGA Education Committee, National PGA Awards Committee and PGA Master Professional (1990). Jim is an Instruction Editor for Golf Digest since 1997 and instruction Editor and Advisor for The Golf Channel since its' inception in 1995. Jim appears regularly on The Golf Channel Academy . He was the Co-Chairman of the PGA Teaching and Coaching Summit in 1992 held in San Francisco. He has led over 50 national teaching and playing workshops for the PGA of America and has been the featured speaker at 6 National PGA Teaching Summits and 4 Teaching & Coaching Summits in Europe. He was Master Instructor for Golf Magazine from 1990 - 1997 and was an Instruction Writer for Golf Illustrated from 1985 - 1990.

The Jim McLean Future Collegians World Tour conducts junior events all across America. There are over 60 national events scheduled and sold out in 2004. It is currently the second biggest junior tour in America.

Jim was in charge of and over saw the 1999 re-design and restoration project for The Blue Monster golf course at Doral. Over 120 bunkers, plus several greens, were totally changed and 160 yards were added to the course. Doral is ranked #3 in the State of Florida (2003).

Jim has taught more than 100 PGA Tour, LPGA and Senior PGA Tour players including:

Dana Quigley Hal Sutton Jane Geddes Jim Dent
Brad Faxon Tom Kite Sergio Garcia Dale Douglass
Lenny Mattiace James McLean Curtis Strange Bernhard Langer
Cristie Kerr Blaine McCallister Ben Crenshaw Jerry Pate
Gary Player Liselotte Neuman Peter Jacobsen Steve Elkington

He has worked with George Zahringer since 1975 (2003 Walker Cup selection). George was the winner of the 2002 US Mid Am, runner up in 2001, and dominant player in the Met Area for over 20 years.

Jim has worked extensively (at his facilities) with four junior golfers (Cristie Kerr, Eric Compton, James Vargas, Liz Janagelo, Tyler Leon) since 1996 that have reached the #1 ranking in America. The Jim McLean Golf Schools have produced a huge number of top juniors who have received college scholarships. The Weston Hills Golf Academy has over 350 juniors in its junior program.

There are eight Master Instructors who have worked under Jim that have been named to America's "Top 100 Instructors" list and nineteen on The Golf Digest top teacher list.

Jim McLean has worked extensively with many top teachers including Carl Welty, Jimmy Ballard, Art Bell, Jackie Burke, Bill Collins, Harry Cooper, Gardner Dickinson, Ben Doyle, Jack Grout, Claude Harmon, Craig Harmon, Dick Harmon, Carl Lohren, Al Mengert, Joe Nichols, Johnny Revolta, Paul Runyan, Bob Toski, Ken Venturi, Bob Watson, Gary Wiren, Vinny Grillo, Harry Umbinetti, Homer Kelly, Butch Harmon, Manuel De La Torre.

Jim was the Director of Golf at 4 top clubs, 3 in New York which included Suningdale Golf Club, Quaker Ridge G.C. (site of the 1997 Walker Cup) and Sleepy Hollow G.C. (site of The Commemorative Senior Tour event for 6 years) and whose members included the well known Rockefeller family and Bill Murray. He was also the Director of Golf at Tamarisk Country Club in Rancho Mirage California, site of the Bob Hope Classic which was a part of The Bob Hope tour event rotation.

1973 graduate University of Houston, B.A. Economics (Played on teams with John Mahaffey, Bruce Lietzke, Bill Rogers, Fuzzy Zoeller, Tom Jenkins, Bobby Wadkins, Bobby Walzel, Bruce Ashworth).

Married Justine and has two children, Jon and Matt.


  • PGA Master Professional (1990)
  • Instruction Editor, Golf
  • Instruction Editor and Senior Advisor, The Golf Channel. Jim has a weekly television show and appears regularly on The Golf Channel Academy.
  • Co-Chairman, PGA Teaching and Coaching Summit, San Francisco, 1992 National PGA Teaching Committee Member
  • Has led over 50 national teaching and playing workshops for the PGA of America
  • Featured speaker at all 5 National PGA Teaching Summits and 3 Teaching Summits in Europe.
  • Master Instructor for Golf Magazine, 1990-1997
  • Instruction Writer for Golf Illustrated, 1985-1990
  • The "Eight Step Swing" was ranked by Sports Illustrated as one of the Top 13 instruction books of this century (ranked #11).
  • Qualified 2 U.S. Open Championships
  • Contestant in the Masters (made cut)
  • College All-American, University of Houston (won 3 college events)
  • Winner Northwest Open, 3 time winner Pacific Northwest Amateur Pacific Coast Amateur Champion
  • Winner of more than 50 Junior and Amateur Titles in the Pacific Northwest
  • Winner, 1987 Westchester PGA Championship
  • Winner, 1989 National Skins Game Pro-Am (seen on ESPN, $61,000)
  • Winner, Metropolitan PGA Pro-Pro Championship (2 times)
  • Winner Metropolitan Pro-Assistant Championship (2 times)
  • Runner-up Metropolitan PGA Championship 1993
  • Currently holds three course records at Doral


Eight Master Instructors who have worked under Jim at Doral during the 1990's have been named to America's "Top 100 Instructors" list.

Director of Golf - Doral Resort and Spa, Miami Florida

Director of Instruction - KSL Properties

Owner, Jim McLean Golf Schools:

Doral Resort, Miami, FL: Director of Instruction - Christopher Toulson
PGA WEST, La Quinta, CA: Director of Golf School - Bryan Lebedevitch

Professional Experience:

1975 - 1979 Teaching Professional Westchester CC, Rye, NY
1979 - 1982 Head Professional, Sunningdale CC, Scarsdale, NY
1983 - 1987 Head Professional, Quaker Ridge GC, Scarsdale, NY
1987 - 1988 Director of Golf, Tamarisk CC, Rancho Mirage, CA
1988 - 1993 Director of Golf, Sleepy Hollow CC, Scarborough, NY

Teaching Credentials/ Awards:

1998 PGA South Florida Section Teacher of the Year
1996 PGA South Florida Section Teacher of the Year
1994 PGA National Teacher of the Year
1986 Metropolitan PGA Teacher of the Year
1987 Metropolitan PGA Horton Smith Award

Professional Advisory Staff:

Kasco Corp
Golf Span.com
The Greg Norman Collection
Swing Solutions
Harrison Shafts

Author of Top Selling Instructional Books and Videos

The X-Factor II (DVD)
Golf Warm-Ups (DVD)
Ben Hogan, A Swing for a Lifetime (DVD)
Complete Idiots Guide to Improving Your Short Game
Golf School
The X-Factor Golf Swing
The X-Factor (Video)
The Eight Step Swing (Book - revised 2001)
The Eight Step Swing (Video)
The Eight Step Swing (DVD)
Golf Digest Ultimate Book of Drills
Golf Digest Book of Drills
20 Problems/20 Solutions (Video)
The Putters Pocket Companion
Wedge Game Pocket Companion
Swing Thoughts (Video)
The 10 Fundamentals of Modern Swing (Video)
Sam Snead, A Swing for a Lifetime (Video)
Swing Saver (CD-ROM)
The Final Check (3-Video Tape - Korea)
The Final Check Book (Korea)
Golf Magazine
Sportware Golf (CD-ROM) More Information on this Instructor

About the Author

Jim McLean Golf School Doral Golf Resort and Spa 4400 NW 87th Avenue Miami, FL 33178 Tel: 800-72-DORAL