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Next Generation: Most Powerful


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When Kelsey MacLean was eight months pregnant with her unborn son, she went into the a golf shop wanting to purchase baby and children's apparel embroidered with the club's logo. She was told "No, there is nothing like that in the golf industry." With no training in fashion design, having never played a round of golf, Fore Kids Apparel was born. The line premiered in 2013 in some of the finest golf clubs, country clubs, resorts, hotels and is a Preferred Vendor for The Ritz-Carlton Hotels, an official licensee of the Tournament Players Network (TPC)....

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Next Generation: Most Powerful

  1. 1. Oklahoma City FRIDAY, Friday, July 3, 2015, Page C-1 Next Generation Most Powerful PAIGE WILLIAMS Director of Tourism Chickasaw Nation Page D-3 ELISE HALL State Representative Page D-4 BRIAN MAUGHAN County Commissioner Page C-7 ADRIENNE NOBLES Assistant VP for University Relations University of Central Oklahoma Page D-2 PAULA LOVE Owner, PLPR Page C-6 KELSEY McLEAN Owner, Fore Kids Golf Page D-1 KYLA TURNER Communications Manager Love’s Travel Stops Page D-3 JOSH DUTY CEO, QuiBids Page C-3 JAMES COTTER Vice President, Cotter & Sons Page C-2 ROBERT HEFNER V Owner, Hefner Energy Page C-5 DANIEL FRANKENSTEIN and ERIELLE RESHEF JANVEST, KOCO Page C-4 c1.qxp 6/26/2015 4:55 PM Page 1
  2. 2. Oklahoma City FRIDAY, Friday, July 3, 2015, Page D-1 W hen Kelsey Aber- nathy McLean walked into the Fieldstone Golf Club in Wilmington Delaware, she was eight months pregnant and wanting newborn clothes with the club’s logo for her baby’s layette. She asked the pro about baby clothes and he said, “No, there’s nothing like that in the golf indus- try.” Golf apparel is a billion dollar industry and there were no baby clothes? Kelsey decided there would be soon. She would start a company, Fore Kids Golf. “I never played a round of golf, knew nothing about business,” Kelsey said. “I asked people in the biz and found out Peru was the place to go for Pima Cotton and found a manufacturer.” Kelsey designed the clothes and traveled to the August 2013 PGA Merchandise Show with only sam- ples. Orders poured into the busi- ness and she immersed herself into learning about the manufac- turing business. Kelsey is from Oklahoma City, granddaughter of oilman Jack Abernathy and sister of Rod Aber- nathy. When she enrolled in kindergarten at an OKC school, her parents were told she would never be able to fill out a job appli- cation. She was dyslexic. She attended private girls’ school in Texas, graduated from Pine Manor College with a degree in Interna- tional Business and sold real estate in Boston until the market crashed in 2008. Kelsey, husband Rob McLean and baby Ian Stirling McLean moved to Chaddsford, Penn. By February of 2014, she made the decision to buy her own top of the line commercial embroidery machines and soon was selling to hundreds of golf clubs, from Okla- homa City Golf & Country Club to St. Andrews in Scotland. For each new design, a techni- cal consultant professor at the University of Delaware prepares a “tech-pak” for each size to go to Peru with the order. The custom logos are done on the latest embroidery equipment with small detail needles in her factory. She does not sell online. The only place to buy Fore Kids Golf is at the country club with its logo on it; or the cruise line or the Ritz Carlton. Ritz Carlton asked her to expand her robe sizing up to 18 and to design a Ritz Carlton adult robe. She created a different label for the larger sizes, “Kelsey MacLean.” Another company held the Trademark on the correct spelling of her name so she added the “a.” Her husband, Rob, is working with her now. “You don’t want me doing the numbers,” Kelsey laughed. She does all the design, adver- tising and marketing. Fore Kids Golf and Kelsey MacLean labels have expanded into the Middle East, China, Caribbean and a dozen more countries, including Canada. Up and at the office by 5 a.m., Kelsey limits herself to a 12-hour day, so she can have family time at night. The kid’s clothes include onesies, diaper covers, polos, girls’ tennis dresses, khaki slacks and shorts, bibs, bodysuits, rompers, bay dresses with bloomers, coveralls, giggle hats… Kelsey designs almost anything and everything. So far, she is only doing robes for adults. “Golf Clubs are more and more about family,” Kelsey said. “We make the finest quality for them with their exclusive logos.” She was an expectant mother, wanting to buy a golf club shirt for her yet unborn baby and became the accidental entrepreneur. Kelsey McLean, Fore Kids Golf All she wanted was to buy her newborn country club clothes, now she manufactures them KELSEY ABERNATHY McLEAN AND her son Ian. “I never played a round of golf, knew nothing about busi- ness. I asked people in the biz and found out Peru was the place to go for Pima Cotton and found a manufacturer.” d1.qxp 6/26/2015 4:52 PM Page 1