Lafayette, LA - For Chris Arceneaux his journey to becoming the first black head golf pro at Jay and Lionel Golf Course started as a young boy across the street at his childhood home.
"I was on the outside looking in, today I’m on the inside looking out. So just to be able to come back from twelve years old just dreaming about this is pretty remarkable," said Chris Arceneaux, Head Golf Pro at Jay & Lionel Golf Course in Lafayette.
That dream started at his childhood home on Pershing Avenue. Chris Arceneaux was 12-years-old when he received his first golf club. "I got to give a lot of credit to David Wilson. He gave me my first club after cutting his grass and doing his lawn and several golf ball," he said.
Arceneaux says it didn’t take long before he was on the other side of the fence and the journey was beginning to take off. "From that point, I was breaking the windows all in the community and my mom said that’s it, go see your uncle. So she called my uncle at muni right across the street and that’s when the dream came."
His unique journey would take him to New York for 25 years before returning to his hometown and eventually becoming the first black head golf pro at Jay and Lionel golf course.
"Being one of the first African-Americans in all of Lafayette courses, one of the first in all of Louisiana and Mississippi, it really hit home and it’s been an outpouring of success of using this platform to help others," said Arceneaux.
Helping others is exactly what he's done since returning home to where it all started. "Standing at that fence I could just only dream. I cried, lost my dad at a young age and using this platform now to be able to do basically, cover just about anything from culinary arts to networking, mentorship, internship. It’s exciting to see it all come to form," he said.
While the journey won’t be easy, he says to anyone else with big dreams, simply go for it. "For anybody that just has a dream, a vision, a concept, a theory, I would encourage each person to go out and go for it."