Meet Our Staff

David E. Lowe

Chairman, The River Course Operating Board

As Chairman of the River Course Operating Board, David has accountability and responsibility to the Virginia Tech Foundation for strategic planning and overall operations of the golf course.  His involvement began in 2002 with the acquisition of 'The River' by the Virginia Tech Foundation.  Since that time, he has coordinated the resconstruction of the driving range, the construction of the Turf Care Center and Golf Team Center, the reconstruction of the golf course by Pete Dye, and the recently completed construction of the $5.5 million clubhouse.

David is a 1963 graduate of Virginia Tech and president of his class.  Following graduation, he served 5 years in the US Air Force with duty in France and Germany.  He retired following 35 years in the telecommunications industry where he held executive positions with Bell Altantic (Verizon) in West Virginia (President and CEO), Washington, D.C. (Asst. Vice -President, Public Relations and Advertising) and Virginia (Vice-President of Operations).  While in West Virginia, he developed and led a program of corporate support to public education resulting in his company receiving one of four national President's Volunteer Action Awards which was presented by President Reagan at the White House.  During his career he was significantly involved in community and economic development activities and private sector support to education.  He served on the boards and held leadership positions with many organizations.  He was a director of One Valley Bank, NA (now BB&T), served on the Agriculture and Small Business Advisory Committee to the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank, and was a trustee of the National Foundation for Independent Colleges.

He is an Honorary Lifetime Board Member and past President of the Virginia Tech Alumni Association.  David served on the Pamplin College of Business Advisory Council and on the board of the Virginia Tech Foundation.  He also serves on the board of the VT Corps of Cadets Alumni, Inc., and the German Club Alumni Foundation and he and his wife, Sharon, are members of the Ut Prosim Society.

David is 'retired'.  He and Sharon live in Blacksburg and are parents of four children (2 Hokies married to Hokies) and have 8 grandchildren.

Jay Hardwick

Director of Golf Operations & Virginia Tech Head Golf Coach

A 1971 graduate of Virginia Tech, Jay returned to his alma mater in 1983 and assumed the dual role of Director of Golf for the Virginia Tech Golf Course and Head Golf Coach for the Hokies.  He was promoted to the position of Director of Golf Operations/Head Golf Coach in 2003.  In addition to his coaching duties, he is responsible for the staffs and overall operation of both the Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech and the Virginia Tech Golf Course.

Hardwick is in his 31st season at Virginia Tech.   During that time he has developed the Hokie golf program into one that not only wins, but does so the right way.  Academic integrity, solid fundamentals and a sense of right are trademarks of this program.  In January 2008, Hardwick was inducted into the Golf Coaches Association of America's Hall of Fame.  He received the award at the association's annual banquet in Orlando, and sharing the dais with Hardwick and the two other inductees was golf legend Arnold Palmer, who received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the GCAA.   He was named the 2005 recipient of the Bill Strausbaugh Award presented by the Middle Atlantic PGA to a PGA member who has made significant contributions through mentoring of PGA Professionals and through involvement in Community and charitable activities.  Hardwick also received the inaugural Labron Harris Sr. Award, given by E-Z-Go Textron, in association with the PGA of America.  The award is presented to the coach and PGA Professional whose support of the game through teaching, coaching and involvement in the community has helped ensure the continued growth of the game and represent the finest qualities the game has to offer.

A head golf professional for 41 years, Jay is a Class "A" Member, Quarter Century Club Member, and Life Member of the PGA of America.  In 1994 he was inducted into the Virginia PGA Hall of Fame, making him the youngest member of this prestigious group.

Jay and his wife Celia have a son, Cris, daughter-in-law, Melissa and grandsons Jacob Dylan and Aiden Thomas who reside in Fredericksburg. 

For a complete biography, view

Email Jay Hardwick

John Norton

Head PGA Professional/General Manager

John assumed the duties of Head PGA Professional/General Manager at the Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech on December 1, 2004.  He was Director of Golf at Grand Palms resort and Spa in Pembroke Pines, Florida from 2003-2004.  Prior to that he was head PGA Professional at the Courntry Club of Miami from 1994 - 2003 where he had served as Director of Instruction for the PGA Tour from 1990 - 1994.

John is a 1982 graduate of Marshall University and a former West Virginia Junior and Intercollegiate Champion.  Professionally, he participated in PGA Tour Qualifying 3 times and was the 1986 Nebraska PGA Section Champion.  He was a highly respected golf professional in the Southern Chapter of the South Florida Section of the PGA of America for many years and served as President from 2001-2003.  He also served the SFPGA Section Executive Committee as Awards Chairman from 2001- 2004.  Among his many honors are:

  • 2003 Bill Strausbaugh Award
  • 2001 and 2002 - Merchandiser of the Year Award
  • 2002 Player of the Year
  • 2000 - Golf Professional of the Year

John and his wife, Bianca, reside in Blacksburg and have three children.

Email John Norton

Mark Cote

Director of Golf Maintenance

Mark joined the River Course, LLC in March of 2006 as Superintendent for “The River”.  On June 1, 2009 he was promoted to Director of Golf Maintenance to be responsible for the maintenance of both the Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech and the Virginia Tech Campus Golf Course.

Mark is a 1984 graduate of Colby College in Waterville, ME with a BA in History.  He also holds an Associates Degree in Turf Management from Virginia Tech.

He has been involved in the golf industry since the age of 12 working as a caddy.  He spent two years teaching and coaching at Southampton Academy before returning to golf.  He has worked at Farmington Country Club, River Creek Country Club, The Greenbrier Resort and eight years at the Homestead Resort prior to his association with the River Course, LLC.

Mark is a 16 year member of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA) from which he holds a Class A Superintendent rating.  He is the president of the Virginia Turfgrass Association (VTA) which is active in continuing education as well as research and scholarships.  He also holds the position of Vice-President of the Virginia Golf Course Superintendents Association (VGCSA) which has been active in helping to form legislative policy for the future of the golf industry in Virginia.  Mark has developed a strong working relationship with the Virginia Tech Turfgrass program and employs students and interns on a regular basis.

Mark and his wife, Tina, have a daughter, Eliza, who attends Gilbert Linkous Elementary School in Blacksburg.

Email Mark Cote

Frances Davis

Business Manager




Mike Cole

Assistant General Manager

Mike joined the staff of the Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech on June 3, 2013 as the Outside Operations and Facilities Manager. He is a retired high school teacher and football coach with over 30 years of coaching and teaching experience. Mike has been both an assistant and head football coach at various schools throughout the New River Valley.

Email Mike Cole








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