Jimmy Dunne resigns from PGA Tour policy board

Jimmy Dunne, one of the authors of the framework agreement between the PGA Tour and Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), stepped down from the tour’s policy board on Monday, effective immediately.

The move comes almost one year after Dunne worked to get the PGA Tour and PIF, which bankrolls the rival LIV Golf circuit, in discussions intended to produce an official partnership. The parties have continued to negotiate even after an original Dec. 31 deadline passed.

In his resignation letter, as reported by multiple media outlets, Dunne wrote that “no meaningful progress has been made towards a transaction with PIF.” With player board members now controlling the board’s direction, Dunne added that “my vote and my role is utterly superfluous.”

Dunne, an investment banker, added, per numerous reports, “It is crucial for the Board to avoid letting yesterday’s differences interfere with today’s decisions, especially when they influence future opportunities for the Tour. Unifying professional golf is paramount to restoring fan interest and repairing wounds left from a fractured game. I have tried my best to move all minds in that direction.”

Dunne reportedly wrote of his role in the talks, “When I arrived on the board in January 2023, everybody involved with the game was concerned about the fundamental threat of LIV Golf. As directed by Commissioner (Jay) Monahan, I engaged LIV’s majority owner, the Public Investment Fund, to see if we could end the lawsuits and reunify the game.

“Importantly, we were able to come to an agreement in which the lawsuits were dismissed with prejudice and a path was created for the Tour to remain in control of professional golf. I believe that history will look favorably on this outcome and the very real opportunities now afforded the Tour.”

Monahan said in a statement regarding Dunne’s exit: “On behalf of the Tour, I’d like to thank Jimmy for his steadfast service to this organization since he joined the Board in January 2023, not to mention his countless contributions to the game of golf that span decades.

“Since his arrival on the Policy Board, we have made remarkable progress in setting the PGA Tour up for decades of future success, including ending costly and destructive litigation with the PIF, establishing PGA Tour Enterprises as a growth vehicle to enable and support our ambitions, the arrival of SSG as an outside investor and partner, and the creation of the Player Equity Program.

“With these foundational elements in place and — more specifically — with an active, focused and engaged Transaction Subcommittee, we continue to make meaningful progress behind the scenes in our negotiations toward a potential agreement with the PIF. Our goal remains to deliver the best possible outcome for the PGA TOUR, our players, partners, tournaments and fans.”

Last summer, Dunne spoke before the U.S. Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations on behalf of the PGA Tour regarding the negotiations with PIF.