• Getting to Know 2021 President Neal Pearson

    Posted on January 11th, 2021 No comments

    Neal Pearson grew up in Oakland. He attended Oakland Technical High, of which alumni include the diverse group of John Brodie, Clint Eastwood and Huey Newton.

    In 1968, he graduated from UC Berkeley with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Zoology. After later graduating from the University of California-San Francisco Medical Center in 1972 he pursued his dental career as an associate in Alameda. In 1973 he started a solo practice which he still operates in San Leandro.

    In 1985 Neal married Kathryn Boli, who relocated to his home in San Leandro with her two children, Katie and Andrew. Presently, baby sitting has become a second career to Katie’s two children and Andrew’s three.

    Since 1976, Neal has been a member at Orinda Country Club. He has served on several committees including Greens, Tournaments and Membership. In 1994 he joined the Spyglass Hill Golf Club in Pebble Beach. With much sadness, the club expired in 2016 due to the club’s lease with the Pebble Beach Company having reached its end. He joined both the California Seniors Golf Association and Northern California Seniors Golf Association in 2001 as a wonderful way to play courses he could not otherwise enjoy. Kathryn has organized several fund raising events for the Cal Bears women’s golf team and both are contributors to the men’s and women’s Bears golf programs.

    What are you looking forward to as president of the CSGA?

    I am looking forward to playing the wonderful courses the CSGA organizes, although I would like to see more golfers from the north become members. I fully appreciate the wonderful support of our numerous Southern California members.

    How did you first get started with golf?

    My father was a golfer an I played once or twice a year at Tilden Park in Berkeley with my older brother Jay. Growing up my passion was baseball. I played on the Cal baseball team in my freshman year. After spending most of my time keeping the pine warm, I switched to golf and played on the golf team for three years.

    What is your greatest golf memory or moment?

    In 2009 I was lucky enough to win the CSGA tournament after bogeying the first six holes. I thoroughly enjoyed mu five trips to the United Kingdom and Ireland. On one occasion we watched the match play finals of the Irish Amateur. I watched a young high school junior who lapped the field at the West Port Golf Club. The kid was Rory McIlroy.

    Anything with the game you would change?

    Slow play is the bane of golf golf enjoyment. I’d like to see a time clock for the pros and more penalties for slow play. If you got a stroke penalty for every 5 or 10 minutes you played in 4 hours people would learn to play expediently.

    What is your favorite course and why?

    I don’t have a favorite but would take the back-nine at Hillside Golf Club in Great Britain. Every hole is totally different. fair and beautiful.

    What influenced you to take up golf?

    I spent several years learning from Ben Doyle, the first instructor of Homer Kelley’s book “The Golfing Machine.” Unfortunately, I was never able to capture the technique.

    What do you enjoy doing besides golf?

    I enjoy reading and history. Especially as it pertains to the Civil War and the decades prior. I used to enjoy going to Cal football and basketball games before the pandemic. Now I watch them on television along with the 49ers. My second career as a baby sitter to five grand children is a challenge.




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