"Charley works just as hard to improve his teaching as we do to improve our games. He is able to continually improve himself and his ability to offer golfers one of the finest learning experiences available."

- Andy Matthews, Canadian Tour Player

Charley Vandenberg, Director of Instruction


Charley Vandenberg, the 69th Professional in the country to receive Master Professional status, has been the Director of Instruction at the Thousand Oaks Golf Academy since April 2007. His passion for teaching the game over the past 35 years has elevated him to the top of his craft. He has been named a top ten best instructor in the state of Michigan ten of the last eleven years by Golf Digest. His quest for knowledge has taken him across the United States to observe the best instructors in the world in order to provide his students the finest instruction possible. His impact on the local and national level has been tremendous, and his accomplishments are many.

Over the years, Vandenberg has held multiple teaching titles including leadership positions on both the Michigan Section Teaching and Education Committees. Vandenberg's teaching methods have been featured in PGA Magazine, USA Today, Michigan Links Magazine, The Grand Rapid Press, and more. Holding annual golf schools, Charley has attracted and taught alongside some of the biggest names in golf instruction including Mike Bender, 2009 PGA Teacher of the Year, Golf Digest's Top 5 Instructor and coach of 2007 Masters' winner Zach Johnson, and putting guru Mike Shannon, one of Golf Digest's top 50 and Golf Magazine's top 100 instructors and putting instructor to 28 PGA tour players.

Vandenberg is named the 2014 Michigan PGA teacher of the year.
His 5th time winning this award!

Players trust Vandenberg, not only because of his proven methods, but because of his genuine desire to help others both on and off the course. In 1997, he conceptualized the Golf Marathon of Hope, a 24-hour individual golf endeavor where he played 400+ holes to raise monies for the Mel Trotter Ministries homeless shelter. Through much hard work and dedication, his goal of raising $500,000 was accomplished after ten years of playing the event.

Charley Vandenberg is not only known for being an elite instructor but also an innovator. He has aspired to integrate the latest in technology and training aids thereby allowing players to become their best at the fastest rate. A few of the most innovative technologies in use are the JC Video Software System, the TRACKMAN Launch Monitor, the TOMI putting analyzer, computerized Heart Rate Variability Training for peak performance, and the MEGSA Perfect Practice Equipment (used by multiple PGA and LPGA Tour winners including Zach Johnson, Jonathon Byrd, Seon Hwa Lee and Morgan Pressel).

In 2010, Charley was named one of six instructors in the world accredited to teach the Laser Optics Putting System developed by putting expert, Mike Shannon (28 tour player students). Utilized extensively on all of the major tours and amateur competitions worldwide, this truly cutting edge information and technology has proven to dramatically benefit golfers of all abilities.

Over the past twenty-seven years Charley has held and taught twenty-nine on-site multiple day schools with the finest instructors in the world, including Dr.Gary Wiren, Gary Smith (Leadbetter Academy), Paul Geisler (HealthSouth), Mike Shannon (Sea Island) and Mike Bender (Mike Bender Golf Academy). Schools have ranged from specialized areas such as fitness (Geisler), putting (Shannon), and short game (Bender), to total game improvement (Wiren, Smith, Bender). Treasured associations with Mike Shannon (annual putting schools for the past five years) and close friend and 2009 National PGA Teacher of the Year, Mike Bender (annual schools for eighteen years), have molded and motivated Charley to provide the finest instruction, based on the best information available, tempered with a sense of care and compassion witnessed while beside the best instructors of the game.

Vandenberg has taught all facets of the game to players of all skill levels. Competitively, in the last seven high school campaigns for girls and boys, over fifty-five students received All State recognition. Nine of these students were named to Michigan's Super Team, annually comprised of the top eight male and female players in the state, and six individual State Championships were claimed. Three of these students captained their #1 ranked teams in Michigan to state titles.

In summer play, Junior Champions were crowned on various tours including the top 50 in Meijers competitions as well as Player of the Year and Runners-up named in multiple age divisions on the Adams Tour. Also recorded were top finishes on the AJGA tour through participants Hannah Lewis, Max Rispler, Nick Carlson, Andrew Yeager, Adam Decker and others.

On the college front, dozens of students have garnished scholarships past and present. Currently male and female students are represented in every NCAA division with maximum scholarships as the division will allow. Today, over one dozen players are today living their dreams registering top finishes in college programs across the country.

Students have captured nearly every major title in Michigan (many events multiple times) as well as titles in other states, including:

  • Michigan Open Champion
  • Tournament of Champions Champion
  • Michigan Men's Amateur Champion
  • Michigan Women's Amateur Champion
  • GAM Mid-Amateur Champion
  • GAM Women's Senior Amateur Champion
  • GAM Women's Mid-Amateur Champion
  • Michigan Women's Senior Amateur Champion
  • Michigan PGA Girls Junior Amateur Champion
  • Michigan PGA Boys Junior Amateur Champion
  • Michigan Junior Open Champion
  • Michigan Senior Amateur Runner-up
  • Grand Rapids City Match Play Champion
  • Grand Rapids Women's City Champion (17 times)
  • Grand Rapids Women's City Senior Champion
  • Michigan "Mr. Golf" High School Champion
  • Michigan Women's Publinx Champion
  • Grand Rapids City Junior Champions (both boys and girls, multiple age divisions)
  • Northern Amateur Champion
  • Northern Amateur Runner-up
  • Missouri State Junior Amateur Champion
  • U.S. Men's Amateur participants
  • U.S. Women's Amateur participants
  • U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur participants
  • U.S. Junior Amateur participants

Special note: Grand Rapids is the second largest city in Michigan, and my amateur female students placed first through fifth positions in the Grand Rapids Women's City Championship in both 2008 and 2009 with consecutive Women's City Champions over the last eight years spread amongst five different students, including 2010, 2011, and 2012 events where students finished first and second in 2010 and first, third, and fourth in 2010 and 2012. Additionally, my students have been crowned both Champion and Runner-up in the Women's City Senior Championship in both 2010 and 2011, and Champion and third (two tied) in the 2012 event held in late June. Also in 2010, a 24-year student was awarded the Senior Women's Player of the Decade by the Golf Association of Michigan.

Notable Professional Students include:

Andy Matthews (coach since 1995)
Matthews is a Canadian Tour Player that has been
with Vandenberg since 1995.
  • 2010 Canadian Tour Top 10 Order of Merit
  • 2010 Corona Mazaltan Mexican PGA Champion
    • Missed 3 fairways and 10 greens in 72 holes
  • 2009 Corona Mazaltan Mexican PGA Champion Runner-Up
  • Fully Exempt Canadian Tour status through 2012
  • South African Tour Player 2005-2006
  • Named All Big Ten, 2002
  • Michigan Amateur Champion 2001
Tracy Hanson (coach since 2004)
Hanson is an LPGA Tour Player (now retired). Under Vandenberg, she was able to vastly improve her LPGA statistical averages in three years:
  • Improved GIR from 101st ranking to 30th
  • Improved Driving Accuracy from 146th to 31st
  • Improved Official Money from 124th to 69th
  • Improved Cuts Made from 43% to 77%
  • Improved Scoring Avg Standing from 119 to 54
  • Improved World Ranking from 289 to 144
  • Top 28 finishes in US, British, and Canadian Open (2006)
  • Improved Scoring 4.4 shots per event

Latest News

Congratulations to:
Max Rispler -2013 Michigan PGA Junior Boy's Champion

Joan Garety - 2013 Grand Rapids Women's City Champion

Barb Schmid - 2013 Grand Rapids Women's Senior City Champion

2013 Boys High School All State Selection:
Nick Carlson - Hamilton - Super Team (Top 8 Players in State)
Reed Hrynewich - Muskegon Mona Shores - Super Team (Top 8 Players in State)
Ryan Bayer - Comstock Park - Division 2
Logan Haight - Otsego - Division 2
Spencer Schab - Forest Hills Northern - Division 2
Ben VanScoyk - Grand Rapids Christian - Division 2

2013 Division II state champion Ryan Bayer (Junior, Comstock Park) who shot a 149
2013 Division II runner-up Nick Carlson (Junior, Hamilton high school) who shot a 151
2013 Division II third-place Spencer Schab (freshman, Forest Hills Northern) who shot a 152
2013 Division II fourth-place Ben VanScoyk (Junior, Grand Rapids Christian) who shot a 153

Nick Carlson from Hamilton high school shot a 62 in Hamilton invitational. His round consisted of nine birdies and an eagle and the second best score out of the 90 players was a 75.

Barrett Kelpin who won the National Golf Association Hooters Tour tournament at Magnolia Golf Club and took home the $10,700 first place prize. Kelpin entered the third and final day of the tournament tied for third place, three strokes behind the leaders. He shot a 6-under 66 Thursday to finish 14-under, one stroke ahead of Ryan Brehm of East Lansing.

2012 Girls High School Division 3 State Champions
Forest Hills Eastern: Henna Singh (5th individually), Kate Glazer, Kelsey Sands, Anne Parlmer

2012 Girls High School Division 4 State Runner-Up
Kalamazoo Hackett Catholic Central: Erin Clark, Madison McMullen, Abby Radomsky, Carrie Radomsky, Becca Radomsky, Erinn Scott

2012 Girls High School All State Selection:
Britta Bernth - Greenville High School - Division 2
Anne Parlmer - Forest Hills Eastern - Division 3
Abbby Radomsky - Kalamazoo Hackett CC - Division 4
Henna Singh - Forest Hills Eastern - Division 3
Madison McMullen - Kalamazoo Hackett CC - Division 4 Hon. Men.

Nick Carlson - Freshman at Hamilton High School - 2012 Division 2 Michigan High School State Champion with rounds of 71 and 68 (3 under par total) and a birdie on second hole of playoff. Finished regular season as medalist of all his events except one. 2012 Super Team selection (top 8 players in Michigan)

Erin DeVries, 2012 Grand Rapids Women's City Champion

Deb Rogers, 2011 and 2012 Grand Rapids Senior Women's City Champion

Andrew Yeager - Senior at Forest Hills Central (2012 All-State 1st Team) who will attend and play golf for the University of Michigan in 2012

Max Rispler - Sophomore at Forest Hills Central, All-State 1st Team

Adam Decker - Senior at Forest Hills Central (2012 All-State honorable mention) will attend and play golf for Loyola of Chicago in 2012

Barrett Kelpin for winning the 2012 Michigan Open in his first professional event by 8 shots in record tying fashion - (23 under, tied record set by Chick Harbert in 1948)

Andy Matthews for shooting 7 under at the 2011 Stage 2 PGA Tour Qualifying allowing him to compete at the final stage in California.

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