Iain Cullen has been president of the Prince Rupert Golf Club for the past three years. (Alex Kurial / The Northern View)

Iain Cullen has been president of the Prince Rupert Golf Club for the past three years. (Alex Kurial / The Northern View)

MVP of the Week: Iain Cullen

For Cullen, shooting your age is just a number

Having been a fixture at the Prince Rupert Golf Course for decades, president Iain Cullen is now looking to ensure that the course is sustainable well into the future.

Of course, that doesn’t stop him from going out to hit the links on the regular, with an impressive degree of success no less.

Cullen’s journey to his current role started in the birthplace of golf itself. Hailing from Airdrie, Scotland, Cullen’s family moved to Canada when he was just 11. The ocean liner RMS Carinthia was their transport, taking five days to travel from Scotland to Montreal in November of 1957.

Another five days in transit, this time by train, saw the family arrive in Prince Rupert. It proved to be an inauspicious start for the Cullen’s: just five days after arriving, Prince Rupert saw one of its worst disasters in history when part of Mt. Hays collapsed during a particularly terrible storm. Eight people were killed in the massive slide.

Cullen remembers the event vividly, and it contributed to a reluctance towards his new home for a good amount of time. As he entered high school and made friends however, a fondness for Prince Rupert began to foster.

His father a worker at an auto body shop, and his mother a bookkeeper, Cullen would eventually go into business with his father in a different venture: sporting goods. This is where much of town will recognize him, with Cullen operating out of Farwest Sports on 1st Ave. West since 1972. He retired from the role and closed the store three years ago.

As for golf, Cullen is an admitted latecomer to the sport. “I was in my thirties. I was out here playing once a week and all of a sudden I got the bug,” Cullen recalls. “I started playing lots, hitting balls at lunch, and practicing.”

Cullen watches his shot head for the hole on the practice green. (Alex Kurial / The Northern View)

He was soon a regular at the course, and now some 40 years later is responsible for ensuring it has a strong future that will allow others to foster a love for the game as he did.

Cullen knew that to make sure this happen, it was time to give back to the course that had given him so much over the decades.

“We need many volunteers to step up. I’ve played golf for a number of years out of this club. It was time for me to step up, and I put my name forward,” Cullen explained on how he landed in the president’s role.

READ MORE: VIDEO: Tyler Stene’s youth golf programs snagging future pros with enthusiastic approach

Cullen can point to many successes during his tenure so far. The course has been able to attract top talent in the form of golf pro Tyler Stene, and greens superintendent Peter Drake. There has also been an uptick in the number of charity golf events taking place, including the Firemen’s Scramble which just set a new record with more than $7,000 raised for the BC Burn Fund.

Cullen’s success is not just limited to the management side of things however. This year he managed to shoot his age, an accomplishment achieved by finishing the course in equal or less shots than the number of years you have been alive.

The feat is rare in the golfing world, as it requires longevity in the sport to be able and attempt it. For good measure, Cullen shot his age again earlier this month. (72, for anyone asking.)

Cullen shot his age twice this year, a rare and impressive feat in the world of golf. (Alex Kurial / The Northern View)

As it was when he took his first swings, the relationships made on the course are what keep Cullen motivated to do his best work with the club.

“The camaraderie,” Cullen says when asked his favourite aspect of the sport. He’s always eager to either go out with a new partner, or old friends.

“Just going out and having a good time with them, it’s pretty special actually,” Cullen said of his many golf partners over the years.

“This course is made up of a bunch of characters.”

READ MORE: STORY AND VIDEO: Record haul at Firemen’s Scramble

Cullen is confident that golf in Prince Rupert is on the right track, and that a successful headquarters for the sport will secure even further growth.

“This last year it’s come leaps and bounds,” Cullen said. “We’re pretty excited about where we’re at.”

Cullen expects to keep performing his role for the foreseeable future. With breaks, of course, while he attempts to add to his shooting his age tally.


Alex Kurial | Sports Reporter
Alex Kurial 
Send Alex email
Like the The Northern View on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

GolfMVP of the Week

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rose Sawka, 91, reaches out to her son Terry Sawka, on a daily visit through the window, from inside Acropolis Manor where a COVID-19 outbreak took hold on Jan 19. Rose was vaccinated for the virus on Jan. 20 and as of Feb. 25 has remained virus free. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
No increases of COVID-19 at Acropolis -16 residents now recovered

Vaccinations have helped to stabilize Prince Rupert long-term care facility virus numbers

A health care worker prepares to test a Coastal GasLink field worker for COVID-19. (Coastal GasLink photo)
Coastal GasLink begins COVID screening of pipeline workers

Construction is once again ramping up following Northern Health approval of COVID management plan

BC Bus North was implemented under the NDP provincial government in 2018 when Greyhound cancelled services across northern BC. The transportation funding expires at the end of March 2021. (Photo: B.C. Transit)
BC Liberals call for immediate govt. renewal of BC Bus North funding

BC Liberals spent years ignoring need for better transportation in the North - Jennifer Rice, MLA

Prince Rupert Tourism is benefitting from funding for new welcome and wayfinding signage from the COVID-19 Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure Program. McClymont Park on the gateway into Prince Rupert is one of the first things tourists see entering the city by road. (Photo: K-J Millar/The Northern View)
$695,000 Community Economic Recovery funds to benefit local organizations

Prince Rupert Tourism and Gitga’at Development Corporation to receive COVID-19 recovery funds

Wainwright Marine Services Ltd.’s “Ingenika” tugboat went missing in the Garner Canal area south and east of Kitimat on Feb. 11, resulting in two deaths and the rescue of a third man. (Wainwright Marine Photo)
Tug union demands Transport Canada protect workers along B.C. coast and rivers

ILWU makes safety demands following the deaths of two men and the rescue of a third

A health worker holds a vial of AstraZeneca vaccine to be administered to members of the police at a COVID-19 vaccination center in Mainz, Germany, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. The federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate, start with the vaccination of police officers in internal police vaccination centers. (Andreas Arnold/dpa via AP)
B.C. officials to unveil new details of COVID vaccination plan Monday

Seniors and health-care workers who haven’t gotten their shot are next on the list

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Jasmine and Gwen Donaldson are part of the CAT team working to reduce stigma for marginalized groups in Campbell River. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror
Jasmine’s story: Stigma can be the hardest hurdle for those overcoming addiction

Recovering B.C. addict says welcome, connection and community key for rebuilding after drug habit

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Most Read