The Middle Atlantic Section of the Professional Golfers' Association of America is one of three defendants named in a $10 million lawsuit filed by Seabury Management, Inc., of North Palm Beach, Fla.
The suit, a 13-count complaint, was filed in U.S. District Court in Baltimore late Monday and lists the MAPGA, the PGA of America and the Philadelphia Section of the PGA as defendants.
HTC The action stems from what the suit says is a breach of a contract that was signed by the MAPGA and Seabury in 1989. The suit says the contract stipulated that from 1990-95, Seabury would create and manage a golf show sponsored by the MAPGA.
The suit charges that after the signing of the contract, the PGA, which owns and sponsors the largest golf trade show in the world at Orlando, Fla., each January, began taking action to eliminate Seabury as a competitor in the golf trade show market.
"I'm afraid we're seeing a greedy and threatened PGA," says Dan Daniels, Seabury Management president, who served as general counsel to the PGA of America for 2 1/2 years before
leaving to form his own firm. "If the PGA had its way, there would be only one trade show -- its own."
Said Vardon Dyer, executive director of the MAPGA: "Although I have not seen the suit, I am aware of the sensitivity of the situation. For that reason, I believe it is right that our legal counsel and the PGA of America address the matter."
Speaking from PGA of America headquarters in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., Jim Awtrey, executive director and chief executive officer, said: "We have reviewed the complaint and believe we have done nothing wrong. We are comfortable with our legal position, and the matter has been turned over to counsel. Beyond that, I cannot comment."