Golf Buzz

January 29, 2015 - 11:02am
Posted by:
PGA of America
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PGA of America Statement: "The PGA of America proudly joins KPMG in support of the newly formed Women’s Leadership Summit – an ideal complement to the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship. The talented members of this summit’s advisory council are poised to generate momentum that will elevate women’s leadership within our game and throughout the business world." -- Pete Bevacqua, CEO PGA of America

NEW YORK (Jan. 29, 2015) -- KPMG today announced the members of an advisory council comprised of exemplary leaders from across business, sports, and the media who will help guide the seminal KPMG Women’s Leadership Summit. The summit, which will be hosted on-site during the week of the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship in June 2015, will serve as a galvanizing force to bring many of today’s most accomplished women together to inspire the next generation of women leaders.

“KPMG is deeply committed to doing our part to ensure that more women have opportunities to develop and become leaders in their organizations,” said John Veihmeyer, Global Chairman of KPMG. “This summit is intended to build on that effort and positively impact the number of women in C-suite positions in corporate America in the years to come.

“The distinguished leaders who comprise our advisory council share the same vision and we’re proud that they have all agreed to share their time and energy to collaborate with us on this endeavor and pay it forward to the next generation of women leaders,” added Veihmeyer.

The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship -- created in conjunction with the PGA of America and LPGA -- will develop, advance, and empower women on and off the golf course by bringing together a world-class, annual major golf championship with a women’s leadership summit and an ongoing community initiative.

“The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship will raise the bar for professional golfers by ensuring they play on the best courses, increasing the purse size, and delivering national TV exposure,” said Veihmeyer.

The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship will take place June 8-14, 2015 at the prestigious Westchester Country Club in Rye, New York. It will offer a purse that is among the highest in women’s golf at $3.5 million and be broadcast on NBC and Golf Channel. Additionally, a community initiative – which will be shaped by KPMG’s advisory council – will focus on investing in future generations of women leaders by equipping them with leadership skills, networks, and added confidence.

“The LPGA Tour has long-needed a major championship like the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship to not only elevate the game of women’s golf through the purse, courses, and national TV coverage, but also to help us connect with other women who are aspiring to accomplish great things in the business community and other arenas,” said Stacy Lewis, the top ranked American Golfer on the LPGA Tour, and a member of the advisory council. “I’m looking forward to working with the advisory council leaders to create programming that will inspire and empower future women leaders.”

The advisory council members include:

1. Roberta Bowman – Retired Executive, Duke Energy; Board Member, LPGA;

2. Lynne Doughtie – Vice Chair, Advisory, KPMG;

3. Candy Duncan – Chair, KPMG Women’s Leadership Summit;

4. Adena Friedman – President, Nasdaq;

5. Dalynn J. Hoch – CFO, Zurich North America, Zurich Insurance Company;

6. Kathy Hopinkah Hannan – National Managing Partner, Corporate Responsibility & Diversity, KPMG;

7. Karen Jennings – Retired Senior Executive Vice President, AT&T; Board Member, LPGA;

8. Michelle Kydd Lee – Chief Innovation Officer, Creative Artists Agency;

9. Stacy Lewis – LPGA Player & KPMG Brand Ambassador, LPGA Tour;

10. Phebe Novakovic – Chairman and CEO, General Dynamics;

11. Donna Orender – CEO, Orender Unlimited; Special Advisor, PGA of America;

12. Dottie Pepper – ESPN Golf Analyst and Reporter; Board Member, PGA of America;

13. Douglas Peterson – President & CEO, McGraw Hill Financial;

14. Elisabeth Sami – Senior Vice President, Strategy & Business Development, NBCUniversal News Group;

15. Molly Solomon – Executive Producer, Golf Channel; Senior Vice President, Production & Operations, NBC Sports Group;

16. Annika Sorenstam – Hall of Fame Golfer and Entrepreneur;

17. John Veihmeyer – Global Chairman, KPMG;

18. Suzy Whaley – Secretary, PGA of America;

19. Maggie Wilderotter – Chairman & CEO, Frontier Communications; and

20. Linda Yaccarino – Chairman, Advertising Sales and Client Partnerships, NBCUniversal.  

January 28, 2015 - 5:03pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Tiger Woods
After a long layoff, even Tiger Woods needs to shake off the rust. Check out this shot he hit on No. 16 at TPC Scottsdale on Wednesday.

You know what it's like when you haven't played in a while.

You need to shake off the rust.

Well, guess what? So does Tiger Woods.

RELATED: WMPO tee times | Tiger Woods in season debuts | Tiger's restored smile

During his practice round on Wednesday at TPC Scottsdale, Woods was faced with a bunker shot and flat-out skulled it.

Check it out for yourself here:


Oh yeah, and the difference between us shaking off the rust and Tiger shaking off the rust? We don't have to do it in front of a packed house on the craziest hole in golf.

That's right -- that shot by Tiger that you just watched happened on No. 16 at TPC Scottsdale.

If he misses the green during the tournament this week, do you think he'll be giving any thought to this shot in the practice round?

Knowing Tiger, probably not. 

UPDATE: Golf Channel's Tiger Tracker is saying Woods hit this shot on purpose. Imagine being so good at the game that you can hit shots like that on purpose?

January 28, 2015 - 4:08pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Madeline Kennedy
Madeline Kennedy, right, was diagnosed with ALS two years ago. Last week at an ALS awareness event, she holed a 78-foot putt on live television.

This might be the best feel-good story you'll see this month -- most certainly this week. had the story of the First Annual Worthington Fore ALS Golf Classic at Worthington Country Club in Bonita Springs, Fla., which kicked off last Tuesday.

Local CBS News affiliate WINK-NEWS was on the scene for the event, where all proceeds go directly to the ALS Therapy Development Institute, the world's first and largest nonprofit biotech focused 100 percent on ALS research.

RELATED: Tiger Woods in season debuts | Mickelson gifted fan Super Bowl tix at '08 Phoenix Open

As the event was getting under way, WINK reporter Andrew Scheinthal interviewed a lady named Madeline Kennedy, one of the event's organizers, who was diagnosed with ALS two years ago and has since lost the ability to walk.

Kennedy was an avid golfer before her diagnosis and continues to play the game thanks to an adaptive golf cart that allows her to stand.

As the interview was winding down, Kennedy wanted to show Scheinthal and viewers that she can still play.

From there, Kennedy proceeded to hit a 78-foot bomb right into the center of the cup.

She even called it when the ball was halfway to the hole, "It's in!"

Here's the video:

What a putt! And on live TV, no less.


If you're interested in donating to the cause, click here.


January 28, 2015 - 1:47pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Phil Mickelson
USA Today Sports Images
In the final round of the 2008 Waste Management Phoenix Open, Phil Mickelson gave a fan the ultimate gift -- tickets to the Super Bowl that evening.

The last time the Super Bowl was played in the Phoenix area was in 2008 when the New England Patriots fell to the New York Giants.

As is always the case, the Waste Management Phoenix Open's final round is on Super Bowl Sunday.

Back in 2008, Phoenix favorite Phil Mickelson had tickets to the big game later that night, but decided early in the day there was no way he'd be able to get over to the stadium in time (that was before losing in a playoff to J.B. Holmes).

RELATED: WMPO tee times | Tiger Woods in season debuts | Tiger's restored smile

According to a story by Karen Crouse of the New York Times, Mickelson charged caddie Jim "Bones" Mackay with giving the tickets away to a fan at the tournament.

The Waste Management Phoenix Open is one of the most fan-friendly events on Tour and it's not uncommon for spectators to receive gifts from players. Usually hats, gloves, etc. -- not tickets to the most watched sporting event in the world.

From Crouse's story:

Mackay, whose second-favorite N.F.L. team after his hometown Arizona Cardinals is the Giants, looked for a youngster wearing a cap with the logo of Callaway, one of Mickelson's sponsors. On the third tee, he found one: He approached Drew Fockler, who was standing next to his father, John, and asked them if they liked football. When they replied enthusiastically, he reached into Mickelson's bag, pulled out the tickets and asked them if they would like to attend the Super Bowl. The Focklers happily accepted the tickets. They later sent Mickelson a thank-you note.

How cool is that?

Unfortunately for fans attending this week's WMPO, Lefty doesn't have tickets to Sunday's big game in Glendale this time around.

h/t CBS Eye on Golf 

January 28, 2015 - 1:21pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Jason Day
The expression on Jason Day's face says it all.

In case you missed it, adidas introduced its new adipower Boost golf shoes last week at the PGA Merchandise Show, with the company adapting technology from its running and basketball shoes to golf for the first time.

As a promotion for the new shoe, adidas brought Jason Day to a driving range where they tried to get the Aussie to hit material from the shoe that was hanging off a flying drone.

Day just missed his intended target, which as you'll see below, was bad news for the drone.

January 28, 2015 - 12:21pm
Posted by:
PGA of America
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Ron Sirak
PGA of America
Golf Digest Senior Writer Ron Sirak will be the 2015 recipient of the PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Journalism.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (Jan. 28, 2015) -- Ron Sirak of Wellfleet, Massachusetts, who was instrumental in the transformation of national coverage of women's golf, has been named the recipient of the 2015 PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Journalism.

Sirak, 64, a senior writer for Golf Digest and past executive editor for Golf World, will be honored April 8, at the ISPS HANDA 43rd Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA) Annual Awards Dinner at Savannah Rapids Pavilion in Augusta, Georgia.

Sirak is the 26th recipient of the PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Journalism, which honors members of the media for their steadfast promotion of golf, both locally and nationally.

"Ron Sirak has brought readers to the heart of a story, connecting us with many of the amazing personalities in our game while also delivering balanced reporting on issues affecting our industry," said PGA of America President Derek Sprague. "Ron is one of the most trusted voices in golf and a friend to all who play the game. It is with great pleasure that we recognize him with the 2015 PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Journalism."

At age 45, Sirak began covering golf full-time. Over the next two decades he reported on 140 combined men's and women's major championships, along with 10 Ryder Cups and seven Solheim Cups. In 2005, he became the first journalist to cover four men's and four women's majors in a season. When the LPGA added a fifth major, Sirak covered nine total major championships in 2013.

"Of all the great honors that I have had in my career, this is for me the Pulitzer Prize," said Sirak. "It is the highest honor to be linked to those who have received this award. I am absolutely humbled. I thank the PGA of America for recognizing the contributions of journalists to the game. We are all stakeholders in the future of golf."

After attending Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Sirak joined the Associated Press (AP) in 1980, where he would work for the next 18 years. He eventually became the AP's golf writer, and in 1996, Sirak and Sports Editor Terry Taylor expanded AP’s golf coverage to include the women's game, amateur golf and the business of the sport. In 1998, he joined Golf Digest and Golf World, where his award-winning stories included a visit with women professional golfers to crisis-torn Rwanda in 2007.

Sirak is the author of three books with acclaimed golf instructors Pia Nilsson and Lynn Marriott. He is a past President of the Metropolitan Golf Writers Association and is the President of the GWAA.

Sirak, who lives on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, has a daughter, Rachel; and a grandson, Declan.

PGA Lifetime Achievement Award in Journalism Recipients:

1991 Dick Taylor
2004 Bob Verdi
1992 Herbert Warren Wind
2005 Al Barkow
1993 Jim Murray
2006 Ron Green Sr.
1994 Frank Chirkinian/Bob Green
2007 Jack Berry
1995 Dan Jenkins
2008 Marino Parascenzo
1996 Furman Bisher
2009 Art Spander
1997 Jack Whitaker
2010 Dave Kindred
1998 Dave Anderson
2011 Jerry Tarde
1999 Ken Venturi
2012 Jaime Diaz
2000 Jim McKay
2013 John Hopkins
2001 Kaye Kessler
2014 Tim Rosaforte
2002 Nick Seitz
2015 Ron Sirak