Lee-Hargrave is taking the dream of spending everyday on the golf
course to a whole new level. Since retiring nearly three years
ago at the young age of 44, Hargrave has spent many of her days
on the range at Jeremy's Golf Center in Waxahachie. But it hasn't
been all fun and games. In fact, it's been a lot of hard work
and it has cost her a lot of money.
is the owner of Jeremy's, a state-of-the-art golf training center
that she's already shelled out $1.3 million on and has plans to
invest even more. "We're putting in a 9-hole golf course,
too. We should start on that at the first of the year," shares
Hargrave. There's definitely room for it, 51 acres to be exact.
In addition to the soon-to-be built golf course and the training
area, there also are several home sites on Hargrave's property.
It's all quite an accomplishment for any entrepreneur, but especially
for a Black woman born in Bryan College Station who spent two
years at Prairie View A&M University before dropping out to
become a model. Luckily for this Christian-raised preacher's kid,
she knows our lives are in His hands and the course she took was
all a part of a greater plan. Even so, she still feels that becoming
a model is one of the worse decisions she's ever made. Despite
a billion dollar smile and beauty that still radiates both inside
and out, Hargrave's modeling career wasn't always lucrative enough
to pay the bills. To compensate for the lack of funds she called
on Kelly Girls Temporary Agency. Like many who make a living working
for others, Hargrave felt that she could successfully run a similar
her own. And she did.
1990, Hargrave started All Temps Staffing Agency. Ten years later,
she sold the company in a multi-million dollar deal and simply
walked away. When asked if she misses it, Hargrave replies, "Oh
Lord no! Not at all, I hated it. My second year in business I
wanted to sell. But I did it for 10 years. It was time to move
on." Hargrave also felt it was time to get married and start
a family. In one year, she sold her company, got married and adopted
a little boy named Jeremy. That explains the name of her newly-built
golfing center, but her interest in the sport is somewhat a mystery.
She wasn't exposed to golf until college. The love affair started
there. Then this award-winning CEO went on to spend many more
hours on golf courses with her former clients. However, she admits
she still isn't very good. Maybe not at golf, but in business,
of the best golf course architects in the country, Jeff Brauer,
was brought in to design the property which also holds a well
house, storage center, a special events facility and a 2-acre
pond for irrigation. Her full-time staff of four is made up of
some of the top golf experts in town, including Jeremy's Assistant
Golf Instructor/Assistant Manager, Opie Maines. Currently in the
Pro Golfers Association, Maines loves his job and is very excited
about Jeremy's. "There's probably 20 golf courses within
10 miles of here, but there's no practice place," he brags.
That's correct. The only other comparable practice range is further
north. But Hargrave says, "The growth is headed south. People
don't realize that the average income is far greater in the south
than it is in the north." Her research proves that to be
true not only in Dallas/ Fort Worth, but throughout the United
States in general. Which is why in addition to completing a book
for women in business, Hargrave is preparing to open additional
golf practice ranges in Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama. That's
all a part of her future plans.
she's focused on her new family and the first Jeremy's Golf Center
located right here in town. "My ultimate dream was to have
a golf facility where people could learn to play and practice,"
she recalls. Once again, she has succeeded. Hargrave is off to
a great start. They've held special classes for women and a youth
camp as well. Since opening Jeremy's up to the public in the summer
of 2002, several school golf teams (i.e. Waxahachie, Midlothian,
Cedar Hill, Roosevelt, Red Oak and Ferris) have chosen to practice
there. This is a kind of validation stamp that Hargrave's project
is up to par. When it comes to making her dreams reality, this
woman is on the ball. That's a good thing, for as golfing great
Ben Hogan once said, "As you walk down the fairway of life
you must smell the roses, for you only get to play one round."