ENCOURAGING AND EQUIPPING THOSE ON LIFE'S SACRED JOURNEY…
The Links of Utopia is a (501c3) non-profit organization named for the golf course found in the book and major motion picture Seven Days In Utopia: Golf's Sacred Journey. It encompasses the mission of the founder, Dr. David Cook, and his 40+ year sacred journey. The Links of Utopia exists to call out, encourage and equip those beginning or continuing on their own sacred journey. The organization includes Dr. Cook, a support staff, and an army of volunteers (Johnnies) who are using the book(s) to impact the life of another.
Utopia is a real place.
It's the setting for the book and movie, Seven Days In Utopia, and now the sequel, Golf’s Sacred Journey, the Sequel, by Dr. David L. Cook. It's a place where your life and golf can be transformed - where you can journey from success to significance. You will find truth, encouragement and an opportunity to use your influence here.
History of Utopia
The Links of Utopia setting for the book and movie, Seven Days In Utopia: Golf's Sacred Journey, is a blend of fact and fiction. There really is a Utopia, Texas (find it with your GPS at 29.616402N, 99.526623W), and there is a 9-hole golf course.
Johnny is fictional. The real Golf Utopia is owned by Lou Waters and managed by his son-in-law Robert Sullivan. It opened in 2001 and includes several water hazards and only one bunker. Fifty of the 400 local residents are members of Golf Utopia.
And there is a cemetery adjacent to the golf course. The Waresville Cemetery is named for Captain William Ware who first settled the area in 1852. Among others, his daughter Sarah Ware Kincheloe is buried there. She was killed when she stood between her children and attacking Lipan Apaches in 1866 and took 17 arrows in her body.
The population of Utopia has fluctuated with drought and economic cycles, but in 2010 it stood at 227. Home also to giant cypress, oak, cedar and "lost maples," Utopia is located in the Sabinal Canyon on the Sabinal River about 80 miles WNW from San Antonio. Utopia grew out of the Waresville settlement and was nearly named "Montana" in 1884. However, another Texan town had that name, so residents reconsidered. Good thing too. Can you imagine, "Links of Montana"?!
David L. Cook
David Cook is a speaker, consultant, coach, author, and film-maker in the field of Sport and Performance Psychology. He served as "Mental Training Coach" for the San Antonio Spurs from 1996 – 2004 that included two World Championships. Golf Digest (2013) named him one of the “Top 10 Mental Game Experts” in the world of golf. He is currently coaching several of the Tour’s top players. As past president of the National Sport Psychology Academy he is known as a leading authority in the science of Peak Performance. He has coached performers from the PGA (over 100 players), NBA (two NBA MVP’s, David Robinson and Tim Duncan), NFL, MLB, Olympics, and collegiate national championship ranks. His business clients have included The PGA of America, Exxon Mobil, Sprint, HP/Compaq, USAA, Heinz, American Express, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Texas Instruments, Bayer, Interstate Battery, StorageTek, Pitney Bowes, US Filter, State Farm Insurance, Robert Half International, Key Bank, Conoco/Phillips, and many others.
In 2006 he released his first performance novel, Golf’s Sacred Journey: Seven Days at the Links of Utopia that was featured in the USA Today Life Section in the fall of 2009. This book was made into a movie, Seven Days in Utopia, summer of 2010 with academy award winners Robert Duvall and Melissa Leo and was released in theaters across the country September of 2011. This movie was built around the performance principles he speaks about in his keynotes. He served as Executive Producer on this project and President and Chairman of the Board of Utopia Films the Production Company. The book sequel, Golf’s Sacred Journey, The Sequel, was released in May 2018. The Psychology of Tournament Golf: Playing Your Best When it Means the Most was released Christmas 2014.
Dr. Cook's consulting firm bridges the gap between the sports and business arenas. He is the former Director of Applied Sport and Performance Psychology at the University of Kansas (1984 - 1996) where his peers elected him President of the National Sport Psychology Academy in 1992. During his twelve-year tenure at K.U. he counseled over 2500 athletes and coaches and directed the graduate program in Applied Sport Psychology. He also directed the Mindset Academy at the Westin La Cantera Resort, a nationally recognized mental training academy for aspiring competitive golfers from 2001 - 2006. David’s articles have been featured in Golf Magazine, Golf Illustrated, and Golf Tips. In 1988 David represented the United States at the International Olympic Academy in Olympia, Greece.
David received his undergraduate degree from Baylor University in 1980. He completed his Ph.D. in Applied Sport and Performance Psychology from the University of Virginia in 1984. He is married to Karen and has two daughters. They live in the Hill Country of Texas.