Monty Elam, PGA wins PGA of America’s 2018 Deacon Palmer Award

PGA Members Monty Elam, Ken Juhn honored as they face physical hardships;
Joseph Hallett, Marvol Barnard, Cameron Doan, Cameron Milton also receive top awards

INDIAN WELLS, Calif. (Nov. 7, 2018) – In an emotional and inspiring ceremony, a class of eight PGA Members were spotlighted for their career achievements, as the annual PGA of America National Awards Night kicked off the 102nd PGA Annual Meeting at Renaissance Indian Wells Resort & Spa, in Indian Wells, California.

Dan Pasternak, the PGA General Manager at Essex Fells (New Jersey) Country Club, was presented the 65th PGA Golf Professional of the Year Award. In addition, James Sieckmann, a 23-year PGA Member in the Nebraska Section and the PGA Director of Instruction at The Golf Academy at Shadow Ridge Country Club in Omaha, was the recipient of the 2018 PGA Teacher of the Year Award for his “outstanding services as a golf teacher, innovator and coach.”

The night also featured two prominent PGA Members battling significant physical setbacks among the Awards class.

Monty Elam, PGA Director of Golf at Whiteford Valley Golf Club in Ottawa Lake, Michigan, was presented the Deacon Palmer Award for overcoming a hardship to work at a high level. Elam was blinded during what was supposed to be a routine eye surgery. A procedure later restored partial sight in one eye. When asked what motivated him to continue in golf, Elam said, “Being told that I couldn’t do it…People inspire me every day.”

In addition, Patriot Award recipient Ken Juhn, PGA Head Professional at Terrace Hill Golf Center in Temple Terrace, Florida, is battling Stage 4 cancer. Yet, he regularly continues his work with military veterans through the PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) program, which provides golf instruction to military veterans as a means of assimilation and rehabilitation.

“It is extremely special and humbling to receive this award,” said Juhn. “With PGA HOPE, we have an opportunity to express the value of the game and its importance as a rehab tool. We need more programs to help the men and women coming out of battle.”

In my 30-plus years with the PGA of America, I’ve never experienced a more meaningful moment than the Awards Night last evening,” said PGA President Paul Levy. “It was a moving night and a remarkable ceremony. Congratulations to this outstanding class of PGA Members who serve as consummate PGA Professionals and an inspiration to us all.”

In winning the highest annual honor given to a PGA Golf Professional, Pasternak headed the 2018 PGA National Awards class for “qualities of leadership, strong moral character, and a substantial record of service” to the PGA and the game of golf overall. The first New Jersey PGA Section Member named PGA Golf Professional of the Year, he has served as a New Jersey PGA Section Officer and on virtually every committee in the Section, as well as at the national level on the PGA of America’s Board of Directors. This commitment to volunteerism and service is reinforced by his role as President of the New Jersey Golf Foundation, which he helped launch in 2004, as the charitable arm of the NJPGA. Pasternak was also the national Bill Strausbaugh Award recipient in 2013.

“I’m a big believer in the PGA,” said Pasternak, who offered advice to the next generation of PGA Members. “I believe there’s a lot of opportunity in the business, and people looking to get in this industry should not limit themselves.”

Sieckmann currently instructs 14 PGA Tour, LPGA Tour and Web.com Tour players, including Stewart Cink, Ben Crane, Anirban Lahiri, Cameron Tringale, Ben MartIn, Tom Pernice Jr., Duffy Waldorf and 2017 Ricoh Women’s British Open Champion In-Kyung Kim, among others. He has also been named to Golf Digest’s “50 Best Teachers in America” list from 2015-2018.

“Many have inspired me but [PGA Tour Professional] Tom Pernice was the first to say to me, ‘You’re my guy,’ explained Sieckmann. “Golf is a lot like life. You are always working on yourself.”

A total of eight PGA Members were honored throughout the evening:*

  • PGA Golf Professional of the Year: Dan Pasternak, PGA, Essex Fells (New Jersey) C.C.
  • PGA Teacher of the Year: James Sieckmann, PGA, The Golf Academy at Shadow Ridge C.C.-Omaha, Nebraska
  • PGA Youth Player Development Award: Cameron Milton, PGA, Polson (Montana) Bay G.C.
  • Bill Strausbaugh Award: Cameron Doan, PGA, Preston Trail G.C.- Dallas
  • Horton Smith Award: Joseph Hallett, PGA, Vanderbilt Legends Club – Franklin, Tennessee
  • PGA Player Development Award: Marvol Barnard, PGA/LPGA, Haven G.C.- Green Valley, Arizona
  • Patriot Award: Ken Juhn, PGA, Terrace Hill Golf Center- Temple Terrace, Florida
  • Deacon Palmer Award: Monty Elam, PGA, Whiteford Valley G.C.- Ottawa Lake, Michigan

In addition, the Herb Graffis Award will be officially presented Thursday, Nov. 8, to the Colorado PGA Section during the 2018 PGA Annual Meeting. The three PGA Merchandisers of the Year will be honored at the 2019 PGA Magazine Merchandiser of the Year Conference in January, prior to the 2019 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.

  • Private Facilities: Nick Muller, PGA, C.C. of Lincoln (Neb.)
  • Public Facilities: Mark Rashell, PGA, The G.C. at Newcastle (Wash.)
  • Resort Facilities: Erik Wilson, PGA, Fairmont Grand G.C.- San Diego

For bios and information on the individual award winners, click here.

Michigan PGA Member, Monty Elam, Named 2018 PGA of America Deacon Palmer Award Winner

A HUGE congratulations to Michigan Section PGA Member, Monty Elam, PGA, for being named the 2018 PGA of America Deacon Palmer Award Winner!
 
“What an amazing story of true grit, determination and perseverance. Life gave Monty a raw deal and in his situation, most would give up hope, some would keep doing what they were doing, but only a very select few would do what Monty did. He went out and made himself even more of an asset to his facility. He is a model PGA Professional that we all should learn from,” said Michigan PGA President, Kevin McKinley.
 
William “Monty” Elam, a 23-year PGA Member in the Michigan PGA Section, is the PGA Director of Golf at Whiteford Valley Golf Club in Ottawa Lake, Michigan.
 
The Deacon Palmer Award honors a PGA Professional who personally displays outstanding integrity, character and leadership in the effort to overcome a major obstacle in their life.
 
In 2007, Elam had a routine eye procedure that went terribly wrong and left him completely blind. After six months, a special procedure enabled him to regain limited sight in his left eye, while he remained completely blind in his right eye.
 
The advice from health professionals was to give up his dream and leave the golf business. However, Elam knew that was NOT an option, as he was ready to tackle the new challenges he faced, while determined to continue his lifelong passion as a PGA Member.
 
Elam’s ability to adapt to different situations, combined with his knowledge of club operations and impeccable attention to detail, has allowed him to re-assume a leadership role at his club.
 
Elam is an advocate for individuals with special needs, as his facility hosts several programs annually for golfers with disabilities. And, his work with the Northwest Ohio Sight Center is close to his heart, as he enjoys giving lessons to blind golfers. Elam is an inspiration through his actions and commitment to excellence on a daily basis.
 
When Monty found out he won the Deacon Palmer Award, he said, “My family was very excited and are very proud. I am very honored and humbled by the award. It means a lot that it is associated with Arnold Palmer and his Dad. I always idolized Mr. Palmer, especially after meeting him in one of my PGA classes in Orlando many years ago. I know it is a tremendous honor to be receive this award, but for me it is just an honor being able to do what I love everyday, despite my disability.”
 
Monty is one of only 11 PGA Professionals and one PGA Section that will be awarded a PGA of America 2018 National Award. The Deacon Palmer Award will be presented on Nov. 6, as part of the 2018 PGA Annual Meeting in Indian Wells, California.
 
Congratulations, Monty!!!

Dan Pasternak, James Sieckmann Headline 2018 PGA of America National Award Recipients

Pasternak Named PGA Golf Professional of the Year,
Sieckmann PGA Teacher of the Year; Lead Class of 12 Honorees 

Editor’s Note:
For images of the 2018 PGA of America National Award recipients, please click here.

For more information on the individual award winners, click here.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (Aug. 1, 2018) – Dan Pasternak, the PGA General Manager at Essex Fells (New Jersey) Country Club, has been named the 65th recipient of the PGA Golf Professional of the Year Award. In winning the highest annual honor given to a PGA Golf Professional, Pasternak heads the 2018 PGA National Awards class for “qualities of leadership, strong moral character, and a substantial record of service” to the PGA and the game of golf overall.

As the first-ever PGA Professional to assume the role of General Manager at the 122-year old Essex Fells Country Club, Pasternak has enjoyed a distinguished 22-year career as a PGA Member. A selfless leader and mentor, Pasternak has guided more than 20 former assistants and colleagues to PGA Head Professional status. This is part of an unrelenting passion to ensure his fellow colleagues and young professionals are equipped with the tools needed to advance in their careers.

Pasternak, the first New Jersey PGA Section Member named PGA Golf Professional of the Year, has served as a New Jersey PGA Section Officer and on virtually every committee in the Section, as well as at the national level on the PGA of America’s Board of Directors. This commitment to volunteerism and service is reinforced by his current role as President of the New Jersey Golf Foundation, which he helped launch in 2004, as the charitable arm of the NJPGA. Additionally, recognizing the importance of continued education, he recently earned certification in General Management through the PGA Certified Professional Program.

The 2013 Bill Strausbaugh Award recipient on the national level, Pasternak also received the award from the New Jersey PGA Section on four occasions (2007, ’08, ’09, ’11). Among his many awards, he is also a two-time recipient of the NJPGA Golf Professional of the Year (2007, ’11).

James Sieckmann, a 23-year PGA Member in the Nebraska Section and the PGA Director of Instruction at The Golf Academy at Shadow Ridge Country Club in Omaha, is the recipient of the 2018 PGA Teacher of the Year Award for his “outstanding services as a golf teacher, innovator and coach.”

Recognized by GOLF Magazine as a “Top 100 Teacher in America,” Sieckmann currently instructs 16 PGA Tour, LPGA Tour and Web.com Tour players, including Stewart Cink, Ben Crane, Anirban Lahiri, Cameron Tringale, Ben Marten, Tom Pernice Jr., Duffy Waldorf and 2017 Ricoh Women’s British Open Champion In-Kyung Kim, among others. He has also been named to Golf Digest’s “50 Best Teachers in America” list from 2015-2018.

Sieckmann is highly regarded as a mentor, educator and role model for fellow PGA Members. His recognition as 2018 PGA Teacher of the Year follows a long list of awards and accolades, including nine times as the Nebraska PGA Section’s Teacher of the Year (1996, 2000, ’01, ’02, ’04, ’09, ’14, ’15, ’16). He was also named the Nebraska Section Horton Smith Award Winner in 2000, and was inducted into the Nebraska Golf Association’s Nebraska Golf Hall of Fame in 2016.

“The PGA of America National Awards winners represent the best of the best among our nearly 29,000 PGA Professionals,” said PGA President Paul Levy. “Their expertise and acumen for both the game and business of golf is so highly respected throughout the industry. Through their best practices and innovations in teaching, coaching, management, merchandising, growth-of-the-game initiatives, community and veterans outreach, and much more, they have earned the admiration of their peers. Congratulations to this outstanding class of PGA Members who serve as consummate PGA Professionals.”

Pasternak and Sieckmann lead a group of 11 PGA Professionals and one PGA Section in winning the PGA of America’s 2018 National Awards. The majority of the awards will be presented on Nov. 6, as part of the 2018 PGA Annual Meeting in Indian Wells, California. The three PGA Merchandiser of the Year Awards will be presented during the 2019 PGA Magazine Merchandiser of the Year Conference prior to the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando next January.

Recipients of the 2018 PGA of America National Awards include:

  • PGA Golf Professional of the Year:
    Dan Pasternak, PGA, Essex Fells (New Jersey) Country Club
  • PGA Teacher of the Year:
    James Sieckmann, PGA, The Golf Academy at Shadow Ridge C.C.-Omaha, Nebraska

  • PGA Youth Player Development Award:
    Cameron Milton, PGA, Polson (Montana) Bay G.C.

  • Bill Strausbaugh Award:
    Cameron Doan, PGA, Preston Trail G.C.- Dallas

  • Horton Smith Award:
    Joseph Hallett, PGA, Vanderbilt Legends G.C.-Franklin, Tennessee

  • PGA Player Development Award:
    Marvol Barnard, PGA/LPGA, Haven G.C.- Green Valley, Arizona

  • Patriot Award:
    Ken Juhn, PGA, Terrace Hill Golf Center- Temple Terrace, Florida

  • Deacon Palmer Award:
    Monty Elam, PGA, Whiteford Valley G.C.- Ottawa Lake, Michigan

  • Herb Graffis Award:
    Colorado PGA Section

  • PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Private Facilities:
    Nick Muller, PGA, C.C. of Lincoln (Nebraska)

  • PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Public Facilities:
    Mark Rashell, PGA, The G.C. at Newcastle (Washington)

  • PGA Merchandiser of the Year-Resort Facilities:
    Erik Wilson,PGA, Fairmont Grand G.C.- San Diego

    For bios and information on the individual award winners, click here.

    About the PGA of America
    The PGA of America is one of the world’s largest sports organizations, composed of PGA Professionals who daily work to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. For more information about the PGA of America, visit PGA.org, follow @PGA on Twitter and find us on Facebook.

    Media Contact:
    Michael Abramowitz    PGA of America        561/624-8458 mabramowitz@pgahq.com

Golf Day at the Capitol: Legislators Learn Golf Industry’s Impact

LANSING – Lt. Governor Brian Calley presented the proclamation from the Governor’s office declaring June is Pure Michigan Golf Month, and then he told the members of the Michigan Golf Alliance that they are having a great impact.

  “The generosity in the $118 million in charitable impact from golf in Michigan alone is so great,” he said at the Michigan Golf Industry Legislative Day on the Capitol Lawn Thursday.

  “You are using your facilities to make communities across the state stronger. The utilization of your facilities makes an impact far beyond the impact of people playing rounds of golf. The economic impact is massive. Golf is providing quality of life enhancements to our communities. It is really great what you do.”

  The Michigan Golf Alliance is made up of the Michigan Golf Course Association, the Michigan Golf Course Superintendents Association, the Michigan Section PGA, the Golf Association of Michigan, and the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation.  Members of the Alliance spread out around the Capitol to visit each legislator in their Senate and House offices, and legislators and staff members were also treated to a “lunch at the turn” in a large tent on the Capitol Lawn.

  Part of the message presented was the numbers; $4.2 billion in total economic impact in Michigan from the industry, wage contributions of $1.4 billion, 58,000 jobs and the $118 million in charitable impact.

  The other part was in regard to legislation of concern to the golf industry.

  Kevin McKinley, director of golf at Treetops Resort in Gaylord and the President of the Michigan Section of the PGA, said the legislators listened, enjoyed lunch and offered advice for dealing with political issues. He called it a rewarding event that helps legislators and golf industry members.

  “I talked with one of the legislators about the minimum wage law and he looked at me and asked ‘What are you going to do? What are you going to do to make sure that bill fails?’” McKinley said. “It made me kind of take a step back and I realized it really does matter if I write a letter. It really does matter if my employees who work for tips write letters. That does matter to the legislators. It was refreshing to hear, that me, not as the Michigan Section president, but as an employee of a business in Northern Michigan, that my voice is actually being heard by legislators.”

PHOTO ATTACHED: Lt. Gov. Brian Calley holds a proclamation from Gov. Rick Snyder declaring June is Pure Michigan Golf Month. He is joined by, from left, Kevin McKinley of the Michigan PGA, Sara Wold of the Golf Association of Michigan, Doug Johanningsmeier of the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation, Dan Dingman of the Michigan Golf Course Superintendents Association and Bill Fountain of the Michigan Golf Course Association.

Contact: Kate Moore at 800-860-8575 or 517-230-8040; kmoore@michigangca.org

Gary Smithson and Son, Brad Smithson Win 2018 Adidas State Pro Am at Boyne Highlands!

Congratulations to the father/son team of Gary Smithson from Quail Ridge Golf Course and his son, Brad Smithson on winning the 2018 Adidas State Pro Am at Boyne Highlands !

Gary and Brad found a way to win in dramatic fashion with birdies on their final five holes and a back nine score of 29 on The Heather course to win by one shot over Brian Cairns from the Fox Hills Learning Center and his amateur partner Jeff Champine.

We would like to thank Adidas, our sponsor of this event. The staff from Adidas was onsite and set up a great mobile pro shop where all the players received $100 to spend as a part of the event. We appreciate their support of this event and the Michigan PGA Section.

We would also like to thank our host site, Boyne Highlands. The staff does a tremendous job hosting this championship. The golf courses were in perfect condition and provided some of the fastest greens we will see all year!

Michigan Golf Hall of Fame: Harding, Williams-Hoak, LaFontaine and Erickson Inducted

BIG RAPIDS – A notable foursome joined the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame Saturday night.

  Tom Harding of South Lyon, a winning tour professional and PGA instructor, Debbie Williams-Hoak of Saline, a former LPGA player and award-winning coach, Gordon LaFontaine of Houghton Lake, executive director emeritus of the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation (MTF) and groundbreaking fundraiser, and the late Bud Erickson of West Bloomfield, a former executive director of the LPGA and the Golf Association of Michigan (GAM), were inducted at Ferris State University’s Katke Golf Club.

  “I still can’t believe I was included,” said Williams-Hoak. “What an incredible honor. I’m so humbled by this.”

   LaFontaine called his life in golf service an incredible journey.

  “In the grass cutting business, I met some of the greatest people in the world,” he said.

  Harding cited the support of his wife Peggy, her daughter Esther and his three daughters Caroline, Priscilla and Elizabeth, who in 2019 will all be part of the Michigan State women’s golf program.

  “We are a family that plays golf,” he said. “This is a big deal to us.”

   Jon Erickson, Bud’s son, said their father loved the social aspect of golf.

  “I always said he wasn’t the life of the party, but he was the guy next to the guy who was life of the party,” he said.

   Erickson, who died last August at the age of 94, was an Army Air Corps veteran and graduate of Michigan State University who before his career in golf was a public relations director and assistant general manager for the Detroit Lions when they won three NFL Championships in the 1950s. In golf he was executive director of the LPGA from 1970-75 credited with adding tournaments and purses and was executive director of the GAM from 1980-84. He also served as tournament director for Oakland Hills Country Club as host site of the 1979 PGA Championship, the 1981 U.S. Senior Open, the 1985 U.S. Open and the 1991 U.S. Senior Open.

  Harding, 53 and a teaching professional at Kendall Academy of Golf in Ypsilanti, played on the Asian, Australian and Web.com tours and won the Canadian PGA Championship in 1991. After his tour career, the Michigan State graduate and Spartan golfer was twice the Michigan PGA Player of the Year and won four Michigan PGA Section major titles including the 1997 Michigan PGA Professional Championship. He has been at Kendall Academy since 2004 where he has been named one of Golf Digest’s Top 15 Instructors in Michigan five times since 2011.

  Williams-Hoak, 58 and golf academy director at Brookside Golf Club in Saline, was an All-America track and field athlete in javelin at the University of Michigan before taking up golf at age 31. At age 40 she was a celebrated rookie on the LPGA Tour. Before turning professional she was a two-time Michigan Women’s Amateur champion and qualified for seven USGA national championships. She won the Michigan Women’s Open in 2000 and twice lost in playoffs on the LPGA’s Symetra Tour. She coaches the boys and girls golf teams at Saline High School and has twice been named a state high school golf coach of the year.

   LaFontaine, 73 and owner of Pine View Highlands Golf Course in Houghton Lake, retired in January after 37 years as executive director of the MTF where he administered $500,000 in annual revenue and product funds, helped to raise over $1.1 million annual donations of equipment, product and funds, oversaw $1.3 million in endowments and was instrumental in the creation of the world renown Hancock Turfgrass Research Center at Michigan State University. The MSU graduate has won multiple awards, and is a past winner of the Golf Course Superintendent’s Association of America Distinguished Service Award.

  The MGHOF is a heralded collection of portraits, plaques and memorabilia that now commemorates 123 members, including Walter Hagen, Chuck Kocsis, Horton Smith and more current notables Dave and Mike Hill, Dan Pohl, Meg Mallon and Kelly Robbins. The collection will soon be housed and displayed in the new Ken Janke Sr. Golf Learning Center that is under construction at Ferris State University’s Katke golf facility. The late Ken Janke Sr. was co-founder and is a member of the MGHOF.

  The MGHOF is administered by the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame Committee, which is funded through the non-profit Michigan Golf Foundation (501(c) (3) since 1996) and includes 18 members representing a cross-section of the state’s golf associations as well as golf media. The MGHOF committee conducts an annual election to recognize the achievements of competitive Michigan golfers, but also accomplishments of individuals who have contributed to the growth of the game.

 

 Find out more at michigan-golf-foundation.com.

MEDIA CONTACT: Greg Johnson, co-chairman MGHOF, 616-560-8995, greggie24@hotmail.com

PHOTO ATTACHED: The Class of 2018, from left Tom Harding, Gordon LaFontaine and Debbie Williams- Hoak. LaFontaine holds the Hall of Fame plaque of Bud Erickson.

Michigan Golf Day at the Capitol

MICHIGAN GOLF DAY AT THE CAPITOL

Allied Golf Associations Join Forces to Bring Message to Legislators

 LANSING – “Let’s do lunch at the turn Michigan Legislators!” The Michigan golf industry will share its message with each state legislator on Thursday, June 7, by presenting the popular Michigan Golf Day at the Capitol event.

The Michigan Golf Course Association, the Michigan Golf Course Superintendents Association, the Michigan Section PGA, the Golf Association of Michigan, the Greater Michigan Club Managers Association, the Michigan Turfgrass Environmental Stewardship Program and the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation, which form the Michigan Golf Alliance, will convene on the lawn of the state Capitol and visit with each legislator.

For over a decade golf course owners, operators and superintendents have gathered each spring to voice a cooperative message. This year the leaders of Michigan golf have again created a dynamic day of activity to promote the game and the golf business. Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley will be on hand to proclaim “June is Michigan Golf Month”.

The executive directors and members of the organizations in the Michigan Golf Alliance will be under the big tent between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. to meet with media and guests and discuss the wide range of topics regarding the golf industry, including and not limited to the effect on business, the impact on tourism and employment in the state, and the industry’s positive effect on the environment.

 “The Michigan Golf Alliance created this event to facilitate golf industry representatives introducing themselves and informing the Legislators and their staff on who we are and what our industry brings to the State of Michigan,” Kate Moore, executive director of the MGOA said. “I can’t overstate the importance of this day in delivering the message to our government leaders.”

The schedule will include Senate and House office visits and “lunch on the turn,” a traditional golfers fare. PGA professionals will be on hand to offer golf swing tips in a special netted hitting area, as well as putting tips on a portable putting green. All Legislators will be invited to lunch with their constituents.

Contact: Kate Moore at 800-860-8575 or 517-230-8040; kmoore@mgcoa.org

Pure Michigan tees up summer-long celebration of signature golf holes with Pure Michigan 18 video series

LANSING, Mich. – From the rolling hills of southeast Michigan to the craggy shores of Lake Superior, Michigan’s more than 650 public golf courses make the state one of the top golf destinations in the country.

To bring attention to this golf mecca, Pure Michigan is showcasing 18 signature holes that represent significant beauty and challenge in a new series, “Pure Michigan 18.”

“Michigan has long been recognized as one of the premier golf destinations in the country, attracting golfers from all over the U.S. and offering the best summer golf conditions in the nation,” said Dave Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan, part of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “Our new video series featuring signature holes around the state is another way we can highlight the world-class golf experiences Michigan offers to travelers from around the U.S.”

Each Tuesday for 18 weeks, a new course and signature hole will be revealed featuring a video narrated by a golf professional familiar with the unique features of the hole. New videos will be shared on Pure Michigan’s Facebook page and will be available at michigan.org/puremichigan18.

Well-known courses from across the state will be featured, including Harbor Shores Golf Club, site of 2018 KitchenAid Senior PGA tournament. Other courses that will be featured include The Jewel, Stoatin Brae, and Eagle Eye Championship Golf Course.

Fans are encouraged to share their golf experiences while playing these holes throughout the summer by sharing photos on Instagram or Twitter and using the hashtag #PureMichigan18, with the chance to win free rounds of golf at a number of the featured courses.

There will be many opportunities to win, including selecting two winners every month for a complimentary round of golf for 4, and a grand prize including more rounds of golf at one of the Pure Michigan 18 golf courses.

Visit michigan.org for rules and details of the contest.

This program complements other exciting news for golfing in Michigan, including the addition of two new golf courses — The South Course at Arcadia Bluffs and Sage Run at Island Resort & Casino — six professional tournaments being held in the state this year, and the Inn at Bay Harbor being recognized by Golf Digest as one of the Best Resorts in the Americas.
 

# # #

 
Media Contacts:
Kathy Achtenberg – MEDC
(517) 335-4590, achtenbergk@michigan.org

Tom Harding, PGA Elected to Michigan Golf Hall of Fame

Two Players, Two Executives Elected to Michigan Golf Hall of Fame

  BIG RAPIDS – The late Bud Erickson of West Bloomfield, a former executive director of the LPGA and the Golf Association of Michigan (GAM), Tom Harding of South Lyon, a winning tour professional and PGA instructor, Debbie Williams-Hoak of Saline, a former LPGA player and award-winning coach, and Gordon LaFontaine of Houghton Lake, executive director emeritus of the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation (MTF) and groundbreaking fundraiser, have been elected to the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame (MGHOF).

  They will be inducted Saturday, June 2, in ceremonies at Ferris State University’s Katke Golf Club, and bring the number of inductees to 123, the MGHOF announced today.

  Erickson, who died last August at the age of 94, was an Army Air Corps veteran and graduate of Michigan State University who before his career in golf was a public relations director and assistant general manager for the Detroit Lions. In golf he was executive director of the LPGA from 1970-75 credited with adding tournaments and purses and was executive director of the GAM from 1980-84. He also served as tournament director for Oakland Hills Country Club as host site of the 1979 PGA Championship, the 1981 U.S. Senior Open, the 1985 U.S. Open and the 1991 U.S. Senior Open.

  Harding, 53 and a teaching professional at Kendall Academy of Golf in Ypsilanti, played on the Asian, Australian and Web.com tours and won the Canadian PGA Championship in 1991. After his tour career, the Michigan State graduate and Spartan golfer was twice the Michigan PGA Player of the Year and won four Michigan PGA Section major titles including the 1997 Michigan PGA Professional Championship. He has been at Kendall Academy since 2004 where he has been named one of Golf Digest’s Top 15 Instructors in Michigan five times since 2011 and has helped 25 students earn collegiate golf scholarships.

  Williams-Hoak, 58 and golf academy director at Brookside Golf Club in Saline, was an All-America track and field athlete at the University of Michigan before taking up golf at age 30. At age 40 she was a celebrated rookie on the LPGA Tour. Before turning professional she was a two-time Michigan Women’s Amateur champion and qualified for seven USGA national championships. She won the Michigan Women’s Open in 2000 and twice lost in playoffs on the LPGA’s Symetra Tour. She coaches the boys and girls golf teams at Saline High School and has twice been named a state high school golf coach of the year.

   LaFontaine, 73 and owner of Pine View Highlands Golf Course in Houghton Lake, retired in January after 37 years as executive director of the MTF where he administered $500,000 in annual revenue and product funds, helped to raise over $1.1 million annual donations of equipment, product and funds, oversaw $1.3 million in endowments and was instrumental in the creation of the world renown Hancock Turfgrass Research Center at Michigan State University. The MSU graduate has won multiple awards, and is a past winner of the Golf Course Superintendent’s Association of America Distinguished Service Award.

  The MGHOF is a heralded collection of portraits, plaques and memorabilia that currently commemorates 119 members, including Walter Hagen, Chuck Kocsis, Horton Smith and more current notables Dave and Mike Hill, Dan Pohl, Meg Mallon and Kelly Robbins. The collection will soon be housed and displayed in the new Ken Janke Sr. Golf Learning Center planned by Ferris State University at its Katke facility. The late Ken Janke Sr. is co-founder and a member of the MGHOF.

  The MGHOF is administered by the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame Committee, which is funded through the non-profit Michigan Golf Foundation (501(c) (3) since 1996) and includes 18 people representing a cross-section of the state’s golf associations as well as golf media. The MGHOF committee conducts an annual election to recognize the achievements of competitive Michigan golfers, but also accomplishments of individuals who have contributed to the growth of the game.

  Find out more at michigan-golf-foundation.com.

 MEDIA CONTACT: Greg Johnson, co-chairman MGHOF, 616-560-8995, greggie24@hotmail.com

 

Scott Hebert, PGA Selected to the Global Golf Post All-Pro First Team

GLOBAL GOLF POST ANNOUNCES 2018 PGA “ALL-PRO” TEAM

The Michigan Section PGA is excited to announce that Scott Hebert has been selected to the Global Golf Post All-Pro First Team which recognizes the most outstanding competitive performances of PGA Professionals across the country. 

Link to the full coverage: po.st/012218AllPro

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Winter Park, Fla. (January 22, 2018)
Global Golf Post, the leading golf news magazine in the world, has unveiled itsfourth annual PGA of America All-Pro Teams.

The awards are a salute to the extraordinary club professionals who perform all the tasks that working at a golf course entails, and yet continue to compete in tournament golf at a high level. The 78 players, representing 38 PGA Sections, are the PGA golf professionals selected by Global Golf Post for outstanding achievement.

“They are the backbone of American golf – teachers, small businessmen, tournament administrators, rules officials, employers, mentors, and knowledgeable golf equipment ambassadors,” said Jim Nugent, Founder and Publisher of Global Golf Post. “They oversee the golf car fleet and golf bag storage area and occasionally they even function as unlicensed psychologists to counsel struggling amateur golfers.”

Rod Perry, the director of golf at Crane Lakes Golf & Country Club in Port Orange, Fla., has been selected as the 2018 “Pro’s Pro,” which Global Golf Post designates one professional who embodies the spirit of the All-Pro Team concept. In 2017, Perry won the TaylorMade Golf National Championship, finished eighth in the PGA Professional Championship, and finished third in the 2017 PGA Player of the Year points list.

Perry joins a prestigious list of “Pro’s Pros” honorees include Bob Ford, head golf professional at both Seminole Golf Club in Florida and Oakmont Country Club in Pennsylvania (2015), Dave Podas, director of golf at Bel-Air Country Club in Los Angeles (2016), and Rob Labritz, director of golf at Glen Arbor Golf Club in Bedford Hills, N.Y. (2017).

Perry also is one of two golf professionals who received First Team honors for the fourth year in a row, joined by Matt Dobyns of Fresh Meadow Country Club in Lake Success, N.Y.

“Despite a heavy workload, many of these pros play at an extremely high level, but they don’t get the recognition they deserve, Nugent said. “Our All-Pro feature is designed to do just that—recognize the best playing golf professionals in America.”

Click here to see the current issue and view the All-Pro selections.

 

About Global Golf Post:

Founded in 2010, Global Golf Post is the leading weekly golf news publication in the world. It is delivered overnight Sunday, 50 weeks per year, to a global audience of nearly 2.0 million avid golfers. Global Golf Post is a fully interactive digital publication that incorporates rich media applications and offers golf consumers a remarkable online experience, much like reading a traditional magazine or newspaper.

Media Contacts:

James Nugent                                                   Karen Moraghan
Global Golf Post                                               Hunter Public Relations
407/496-4955                                                     908/963-6013
nuge@globalgolfpost.com                                 kmoraghan@hunter-pr.com