Royal and Ancient Golf Club

Neil Donaldson announced as new Royal and Ancient Captain

The R&A
03 May 23
2m read

The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews has announced that Neil Donaldson will serve as Captain in 2023/24. 

Mr Donaldson has been nominated by the Past Captains of the Club and will begin his year in office with the traditional Driving-in ceremony on the first tee of the Old Course on Friday 22 September 2023.

Successful businessman who has held a number of senior positions

A successful businessman for more than 45 years, Mr Donaldson has enjoyed a long career in the timber industry and served in senior executive and non-executive roles in a number of companies. He is currently President of the James Donaldson Group, one of Scotland’s largest privately owned and family run companies, and is the fifth generation of the family to be involved in the business. He has received two lifetime achievement awards from the timber industry. Mr Donaldson (67) is Chairman of investment trust Baillie Gifford Shin Nippon and a former Chairman of the Securities Trust of Scotland. He is on the board of the Old Course Ltd, which oversees the Old Course Hotel Golf Resort and Spa, and was previously Chairman of Crieff Hydro for ten years. He is also involved in a number of charities, including the Donaldson Leadership Academy which he founded in 2008.

A member of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club for more than 30 years

Born in Perth and raised in Fife, Mr Donaldson was educated at Merchiston Castle School and Heriot-Watt University where he obtained a Masters in Business Studies and Marketing. He became a member of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews in 1992 and has served on a number of Committees, including as Chairman of the Club Committee, Deputy Chairman of the General Committee, Chairman of the Heritage Committee and was the first Chairman of the Nominations Sub-Committee. He also served on the board of the then British Golf Museum. A keen golfer, Mr Donaldson plays to a handicap of 12.5 and next year will mark his fiftieth year as a member of Lundin Golf Club. He is also a member of Vila Sol in Portugal. Mr Donaldson lives in St Andrews with his wife Val and has three children and eight grandchildren. Among his other pursuits are salmon fishing and skiing.