Caddie to food concessionaire: Local man shares full circle journey to the Presidents Cup

David Cook worked as a caddie at Quail Hollow Club in the 1960s.
Concession stands line the course at Quail Hollow Club with vendors preparing to feed hundreds of thousands of people during the Presidents Cup.
Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 7:13 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Concession stands line the course at Quail Hollow Club with vendors preparing to feed hundreds of thousands of people during the Presidents Cup.

For one local food concessionaire, it’s particularly nostalgic to serve during this historic event.

David Cook, known from the local Dave and Fran’s Catering, is also the owner of Americana concessions company.

His team has three concessions tents set up around the course this week.

What you might not know is that David Cook got his first introduction to this course when he was just eight years old. His first job was picking up balls around the course.

Related: Charlotte businesses anticipating economic boom from the Presidents Cup

Throughout high school, he worked as a caddie.

“You either worked in a restaurant or you caddied at the golf course, and that’s what we’d do,” Cook, who is one of eight children in his family, said.

Cook first learned the value of hard work on the rolling fairways of Quail Hollow Club.

After high school he went on to serve as a sergeant in the Marine Corps, graduate from law school, and then ultimately segue into the food and beverage industry.

“It started out as a part-time business, and I found out it’s a $400 billion dollar a year business with no minority companies,” he said. “I decided I would learn in the business and try to succeed in the business.”

Cook is one of few people who can say he was serving food at Bank of America Stadium, Spectrum Center and Truist Field when they first opened.

He also took his expertise in concessions, back to his roots in golf.

“I’ve done nine US opens, 17 Wells Fargos, 113 regular tournaments,” he said. “Most people never done one or two Ryder Cups, and I just finished my fifth one in Whistling Straits.”

This is his first Presidents Cup, and it’s back where it all started for him.

“It’s so surreal and it makes you speechless,” he said. “Mr. Johnny Harris and that whole crew has been so supportive of me. When I started out they accepted me as one of their vendors. To see them get events like this makes me feel good and proud of the city, of Quail Hollow.”

He has pride in playing a role in the tournament, and a role in moving the needle for the golf industry.

“When I first came out the only black people were cutting the grass, cleaning the bathrooms and washing dishes,” he said. “It’s changed and there’s an effort to really change it and I’m just glad to be a part of that change.”

Cook was also proud to mention he recently helped write Chapter 7 in The Sport Business Handbook.