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  • Steve Habel

Texas Golf Hall of Fame

Ratchman’s contributions to Lone Star State golf garners nomination to prestigious Texas Golf Hall of Fame

Mike Ratchman, the owner and publisher of Texas Golf Insider magazine, has been a constant and consistent presence on the Lone State State’s golf scene over the past 26 years.

That longevity and excellence in promoting the state’s courses, news, trends and personalities have garnered Ratchman a nomination into the Texas Golf Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024, an ultimate honor for an uber-positive man who’s built his career and his life on relationships and friendships, both in the game of golf and outside the tees, fairways and greens.

The New Braunfels-based Ratchman has been a voting member of the Texas Golf Hall of Fame for several years and considers that role “an honor in itself.” He’s over the moon about his nomination.

“Just the thought of my picture hanging in the same building with greats like Byron Nelson, Lee Trevino, Ben Hogan, Justin Leonard and the list goes on ... it’s pretty humbling,” Ratchman said. “To be honest, I didn’t know anyone was paying attention.”

Plenty has changed in golf since 1998 when Ratchman became the publisher of the magazine in that would eventually become Texas Golf Insider. He’s been able to handle the challenges and tests, surviving the tough times that has included hurricanes, droughts, recessions, pandemics – and now inflation.

“I sure have seen a lot, and we are still here and still having fun doing it,” Ratchman said. “I keep things pretty simple. I do my job, and I do what I say I will do for our advertisers, our readers and our podcast viewers. And I hope everyone always enjoys the finished product.”

Texas Golf Insider is the Lone Star State’s longest consistently produced publication and the only magazine available statewide, with actual printed copies found in golf shops and clubhouses from Amarillo to South Padre Island from Beaumont to El Paso, as well as out of state in golf travel destinations such as Louisiana, Oklahoma and New Mexico and south of the border in Mexico.

Ratchman is also the host (along with longtime partner and PGA professional Dave Roberts) of the highly popular “Golf After Hours” podcast, a rollicking weekly show on Facebook Live that highlights the best of Texas golf. Ratchman’s effusive personality and his enthusiasm for the game shines through in the format.

Over the past 18 years, Ratchman and Roberts have interviewed some of the greats of all time such as Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Gary Player.

Ratchman got his start in the “publishing business” when he worked in the banding department Oshkosh Daily Northwestern in his hometown of Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where he lived until he was 19 years old.

He’s been playing golf since he was 13; in those days Ratchman could still play his local Muni golf course barefooted.

“Arnold Palmer was my hero at the time, and I watched him play every week,” Ratchman said. “I never thought in my wildest dreams that one day I would get to interview him. What a gracious man he was to give me time to get to know him.”

After a few years of travel across the U.S., Ratchman and his family landed in San Antonio in the 1980s,

“We settled in, and I have been in Texas ever since,” Ratchman explained. “I have been an avid golfer now for over 60 years, having worked at driving ranges for many years as a part-timer to hone the game that I’m totally addicted to.”

Ratchman won the Southern Texas section’s PGA Media/Public Relation Award in 2014 for significant contribution for promotion and public awareness that helped elevate the status of South Texas’ PGA professionals.

Texas Golf Insider is a marketing partner and participant in the Rudy's I-35 Cup and through the years has helped raised over $520,000 to benefit the Austin and San Antonio First Tee programs and Africa New Life. “I’m proud to represent Texas golf whenever I go and I am passionate about promoting it as well as the many charities we have worked with,” Ratchman said.

The future is bright as golf continues to grow in Texas and around the world. If there is a golf story to write or someone to interview about the game, Texas Golf Insider will be there.

“It has been my pleasure over the past 26 years as a publisher to distribute more than 2.5 million magazines throughout Texas and across the nation and Canada,” Ratchman said. “In 18 years of broadcasting we’ve reached nearly 2 million viewers while promoting Texas as a premier golf destination.”



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