PGA of America History - 2000-2009

  • 2000:
    • PGALinks.com, the Web site exclusively for PGA members and apprentices, registers its 10,000th active PGA Professional.
    • Doug Tewell wins the rain-shortened 61st Senior PGA Championship at PGA National Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
    • Tim Thelen, PGA assistant professional at Baywood Country Club in Pasadena, Texas, defeats Mark Brown of Glen Cove, N.Y., in a five-hole cumulative-score playoff to capture the rain-shortened PGA Club Professional Championship at Oak Tree Golf Club in Edmond, Okla.
    • Jack Nicklaus is named the recipient of the PGA Distinguished Service Award.
    • Tiger Woods defeats Bob May in the first-ever three-hole cumulative-score playoff at Valhalla Golf Club, and becomes the first player in the stroke-play era to win back-to-back PGA Championships. Woods is later named PGA Player of the Year for the third time in four years.
    • CBS Sports' final-round coverage of the 82nd PGA Championship is the highest rated since 1986.
    • The Unites States team of PGA Professionals edges Great Britain-Ireland, 13 to 12, in Newport, South Wales, to retain the PGA Cup.
    • Jack Connelly of Huntingdon Valley, Pa., is elected the 32nd PGA President at the 84th PGA Annual Meeting in Charleston, S.C.
    • Charles "Vic" Kline of Arvada, Colo., is named the 2000 PGA Golf Professional of the Year.
    • Harry "Lighthorse" Cooper, PGA golf legend and the longest-serving PGA Professional, dies at age 96.
  • 2001:
    • The PGA of America honors its past Champions in a PGA Championship exhibit, making its debut at the Louisville (Ky.) Slugger Museum.
    • Tom Watson edges Jim Thorpe by one stroke to win the 62nd Senior PGA Championship, which is held outside of Florida for the first time since 1938, at The Ridgewood Country Club in Paramus, N.J.
    • Wayne De Francesco, PGA assistant professional at Woodholme Country Club in Pikesville, Maryland, wins the 34th PGA Club Professional Championship on the Crosswater Course at Sunriver Resort in Sunriver, Ore.
    • David Toms birdies the final hole of regulation to edge Phil Mickelson by one stroke and win the 83rd PGA Championship at The Atlanta Athletic Club in Duluth, Ga. 
    • IMG founder Mark McCormack earns the 2001 PGA Distinguished Service Award and former USGA President Judy Bell is the recipient of the PGA First Lady of Golf Award.
    • The Ryder Cup is postponed in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks, and scheduled to resume in even-numbered years.
    • The PGA Education Center,a 23,650-square-foot facility with more than 11,000 square feet of classroom space, opens at PGA Village in Port St. Lucie, Fla.
    • The PGA donates $500,000 to match Ryder Cup team donations toward a September 11 relief fund.
    • The PGA begins a $2 million Growth of the Game grant program to support local programs aimed at introducing new players to golf.
    • PGA Golf Club at PGA Village hosts the second Special Olympics Golf National Invitational Tournament, with 148 Special Olympians competing.
  • 2002:
    • Fuzzy Zoeller captures the  63rd Senior PGA Championship at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio.
    • Barry Evans, PGA Head Golf Professional at Berry Hills Country Club in Charleston,W. Va., wins the 35th PGA Club Professional Championship at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.
    • Former PGA Assistant Professional Rich Beem of El Paso, Texas, wins the 84th PGA Championship by one stroke over Tiger Woods at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn.
    • PGA Professional Suzy Whaley of Farmington, Conn., becomes the first woman to win a PGA Section Championship, earning her a berth in the 2003 Greater Hartford Open (PGA Tour event).
    • PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem receives the 2002 PGA Distinguished Service Award while LPGA Tour great Nancy Lopez is named the recipient of the PGA First Lady Of Golf Award.
    • The European Team dominates the final day singles en route to a 15 ½ to 12 ½ victory over the visiting Americans in the 34th Ryder Cup, at The Belfry in Sutton Coldfield, England.
    • The eighth biennial PGA Teaching & Coaching Summit is held outdoors for the first time, at the PGA Learning Center at PGA Village.
    • Celebrating the growth of golf through the years in the United States,The PGA of America dedicates the PGA Historical Center at PGA Village.
    • M.G. Orender of Jacksonville Beach, Fla., is elected the 33rd PGA President at the 86th PGA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia.
  • 2003:
    • John Jacobs wins his first major championship in the 64th Senior PGA Championship at Aronimink Golf Club in Pennsylvania.At age 58, Jacobs is the oldest player to win the Alfred S. Bourne Trophy in 25 years.
    • PGA Professional Suzy Whaley, the first woman since Babe Zaharias in 1945 to qualify for a PGA Tour event, shoots 75-78 and misses the cut at the Greater Hartford Open.
    • Tim Thelen, a PGA assistant professional at Bushwood Golf Center in Houston, Texas, wins his second PGA Club Professional Championship in four years at Twin Warriors Golf Club in Santa Ana Pueblo, N.M.
    • Winless in 163 previous starts on the PGA Tour, unheralded Shaun Micheel of Memphis,Tenn., shoots a final-round 70 to win the85th PGA Championship at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y.
    • Country music star and avid golf promoter Vince Gill earns the 2003 PGA Distinguished Service Award and the PGA First Lady of Golf Award is presented to PGA Professional Renee Powell, the second African American woman to play on the LPGA Tour.
    • The PGA of America launches "Play Golf America," an industry-supported growth of the game initiative aimed at attracting new golfers and bringing back former or occasional golfers through a variety of programs to be guided by PGA Professionals.
  • 2004:
    • The first full-scale Play Golf America campaign debuts to the public, with television and print PSAs directing golfers to visit www.playgolfamerica.com for player development programs in their area.
    • Hale Irwin survives five weather-related delays, tornado warnings and more than 7 inches of rain to beat Jay Haas by one stroke at the 65th Senior PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club, in Louisville, Ky. Irwin, one week shy of his 59th birthday, earns his fourth Senior PGA title.
    • Vijay Singh captures his second PGA Championship, defeating Chris DiMarco and Justin Leonard in at three-hole aggregate-score playoff at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wis. Singh would later earn both the PGA Player of the Year Award and the Vardon Trophy.
    • Legendary golf course architect Pete Dye is the recipient of the 2004 PGA Distinguished Service Award and Alice Dye, golf course architect and author, earns the PGA First Lady of Golf Award.
    • Bernhard Langer captains the European Team to a dominating 18 1/2 to 9 1/2 victory over the United States Team in the 35th Ryder Cup at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Township, Mich. The record-setting win is the second consecutive Ryder Cup for the Europeans, and Europe's fourth in the last five matches.
    • Bob Sowards of Columbus, Ohio, becomes the first Southern Ohio PGA member to win the PGA Club Professional Championship, holding off runner-up Mike Small by one stroke. Soward's victory at the 37th Championship, played at Longaberger Golf Club in Nashport, Ohio, is a pre-cursor to him winning his second consecutive PGA Club Professional Player of the Year Award.
    • Masters Champion Phil Mickelson blisters the course during the final round of the 22nd PGA Grand Slam of Golf, shooting an event and course-record 13-under-par 59, on his way to tying the 36-hole event record of 127 at the Poipu Bay Golf Course & Hyatt Regency Kauai Resort & Spa in Kauai, Hawaii.
    • The PGA Certified Professional Program, an online career-enhancing education program designed to elevate opportunities for PGA Professionals in the workplace, is launched.
    • The 9th biennial PGA Teaching& Coaching Summit is held for more than 1,000 PGA Professionals at the PGA Learning Center at PGA Village in Port St. Lucie, Fla.
    • Roger Warren of Kiawah Island, S.C., is elected the 34th PGA President at the 88th PGA Annual Meeting on Amelia Island, Fla.
  • 2005:
    • PGA Free Lesson Month sets yet another record with more than 122,000 free lessons given and a record 6,889 PGA Professionals participating
    • Down by three strokes with one hole to play, Mike Reid lands an eagle on the 72nd hole to earn a three-way playoff with Dana Quigley and Jerry Pate in the 66th Senior PGA Championship at Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier, Pa. Reid proceeds to birdie the first extra hole to win his first major title.
    • Phil Mickelson returned on Monday in a rain-delayed 87th PGA Championship and birdies the 72nd hole to win his second major Championship. Mickelson is the first left-hander to win a PGA Championship and the first left-hander to win more than one major.
    • The PGA Golf Professional Hall of Fame is unveiled at the PGA Historical Center in Port St. Lucie, Fla., featuring 122 inductees that have made significant contributions to the Association since its origin in 1916. The class is headed by inductees M.G. Orender, PGA honorary president, and Craig Harmon, the 2004 PGA Golf Professional of the Year.
    • The PGA of America teams with major U.S. golf organizations in the creation of the U.S. Golf Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund, to provide support for relief efforts in devastated areas of the Gulf Coast. More than $1.3 million is raised by The PGA for hurricane victims.
    • The United States PGA Cup Team stages a dramatic final day comeback, only to come up short to Great Britain & Ireland 15-11 in the 22nd PGA Cup, held on the Smurfit Course at The K Club, Straffan, County Kildare, Ireland. It is the first PGA Cup win for Great Britain & Ireland in 21 years.
    • Joe Steranka, who had guided The PGA of America's Communications and Broadcasting divisions and forged invaluable partnerships with the television and sports business communities, is named to succeed Jim Awtrey as chief executive officer.
    • Tiger Woods wins a record seventh PGA Player of the Year Award, breaking a mark he had previously shared with Tom Watson. Woods also captures a record sixth Vardon Trophy, eclipsing the standard he had formerly shared with Billy Casper.
  • 2006:
    • PGA Village, in Port St. Lucie, Fla., which features three world-class golf courses along with the PGA Education, Learning and Historical Centers, marks its 10th anniversary on Jan. 1, 2006.
    • The 53rd PGA Merchandise Show attracts approximately 43,000 attendees. The first-ever Play Golf America Conference is held before a sold-out crowd. Other firsts include the PGA/USA Today Golf Equipment Hotline and Town Hall Meetings with PGA members and manufacturers with PGA President Roger Warren and PGA Chief Executive Officer Joe Steranka.
    • The PGA of America celebrates its 90th Anniversary with a gala event on April 10, 2006, at the Hotel Martinique, in New York City, the exact date and site of its founding in 1916.
    • Led by The PGA of America, Play Golf America debuts new events in 2006, including PGA Free Fitting & Trade-Up Month in April and Take Your Daughter to the Course Week in July. In addition, Women's Golf Week becomes a full-fledged Play Golf America event in June.
    • Jay Haas captures his first win at the 67th Senior PGA Championship at Oak Tree Golf Club in Edmond, Okla. by defeating Brad Bryant in a sudden death playoff.
    • Ron Philo, Jr., PGA Head Professional at Metropolis Country Club in White Plains, N.Y., wins the 39th PGA Club Professional Championship at Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, N.Y.
    • Tiger Woods captures his third PGA Championship overall, and second at Medinah (Ill.) Country Club, by five shots over 2003 PGA Champion Shaun Micheel.
    • Former USGA President and U.S. Amateur Champion Fred Ridley is the recipient of the 2006 PGA Distinguished Service Award while the LPGA Tour’s most victorious player Kathy Whitworth received the 2006 PGA First Lady of Golf Award.
    • ESPN gains the rights to broadcast live first-day coverage of the Ryder Cup from 2008-2014, under an agreement with NBC Sports, which has broadcast the Ryder Cup since 1991.
    • In the 36th Ryder Cup, the first held in Ireland, Europe again dominated the United States for an 18 ½ to 9 ½ victory, the same result as in 2004.
    • Two-time PGA Champion Byron Nelson, the fifth-oldest PGA member, passes away at the age of 94, at his home in Roanoke, Texas. Two days after his death, Nelson is awarded a Congressional Gold Medal in a unanimous declaration by the United States Congress.
    • The PGA Golf Club reopens its newly renovated courses in October 2006. The North Course is renamed the Ryder Course, in honor of Samuel Ryder, namesake for the Ryder Cup. The South Course is renamed the Wanamaker Course, in tribute to Rodman Wanamaker, a founder of The PGA of America, creator of the PGA Championship and donator of the Trophy that bears his name.
    • Brian Whitcomb of Bend, Ore., is elected the 35th PGA President at the 90th PGA Annual Meeting at Kiawah Island (S.C.) Resort.
    • The Mid Ocean Club and The Fairmont Southampton in Bermuda is named as host of the 25th PGA Grand Slam of Golf, to be played in October 2007. The event will mark the first time that the PGA Grand Slam is played outside of the United States.
    • The PGA of America is honored by the U.S. House of Representatives with a Resolution that commends The PGA and its members for their contributions to the game of golf.
    • The PGA of America announces the PGA McGladrey Team Championship, the Association's first venture into managing a national grassroots amateur golf championship.
  • 2007:
    • The first-ever PGA Global Economic Summit, featuring PGA of America CEO Joe Steranka, PGA of Great Britain Chief Executive Sandy Jones and PGA of Australia CEO Max Garske, opens the PGA Merchandise Show.
    • LPGA legend Peggy Kirk Bell is named as 2007 PGA First Lady of Golf and Jack Burke Jr., the 1956 PGA Champion, is named as the 2007 PGA Distinguished Service Award winner.
    • The Royal Bank of Scotland Group becomes the first PGA of America Official Patron, the highest level of partnership and designation ever given by The PGA. Shortly thereafter, American Express follows as a PGA of America Official Patron.
    • Denis Watson shoots a final round 68 to capture the 68th Senior PGA Championship on the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island Golf Resort on Kiawah Island, S.C.
    • Chip Sullivan, PGA Head Professional at Ashley Plantation in Daleville, Va., wins the 40th PGA Club Professional Championship.
    • The inaugural Patriot Golf Day, inspired by PGA Professional and Capt. Dan Rooney, results in donations of more than $1.1 million to support the families of veterans who have been injured or perished in the line of duty in Iraq or Afghanistan. Supported by The PGA of America and the United States Golf Association, Patriot Golf Day sees more than 3,200 golf facilities nationwide participate.
    • Brent Krause is named the 54th recipient of the PGA Golf Professional of the Year Award.
    • Newport National Golf Club, representing the New England PGA Section, captures the inaugural PGA McGladrey Team Championship conducted at Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort.
    • Tiger Woods holds off a charging Woody Austin to win his fourth PGA Championship at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Okla.  Woods later goes on to win a ninth PGA Player of the Year award and a seventh Vardon Trophy.
  • 2008:
    • The PGA of America unveils its new logo and brand strategy -- "The Experts in the Game and Business of Golf” -- at its 91st Annual Meeting, the first to be held in conjunction with the PGA Merchandise Show. The logo was last updated in 1990.
    • The University of Maryland Eastern Shore becomes the 20th and first historically black college/university to join the PGA Professional Golf Management Program.
    • Jay Haas captures his second Senior PGA Championship by edging out Bernhard Langer by one stroke at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y.
    • Scott Hebert, PGA head professional at Grand Traverse Resort & Spa in Traverse City, Mich., wins the 41st PGA Professional National Championship at Reynolds Plantation in Greensboro, Ga.
    • The PGA of America conducts the inaugural American Express Women's Golf Month in June. This is the latest National Promotion under the Play Golf America umbrella.
    • Padraig Harrington of Ireland wins the 90th PGA Championship at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Township, Mich., by two strokes over Sergio Garcia and Ben Curtis. Harrington becomes the first European since Tommy Armour in 1930 to win the PGA Championship. Later in the year, Harrington becomes the first from his homeland and only the second European player in history to win The PGA of America's Player of the Year award.
    • PGA Honorary member and trick shot artist Dennis Walters earns the 2008 PGA Distinguished Service award while PGA Professional, and former LPGA President, Carol Mann is the recipient of the 2008 PGA First Lady of Golf.
    • Led by Captain Paul Azinger, the United States reclaims the Ryder Cup by defeating Europe, 16 ½ to 11 ½, at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky. The U.S. Team, wins golf's greatest event for first time since 1999.
    • William Clarke, the 18th President of The PGA of America, dies in September.
    • Jim Remy of Ludlow, Vt., is elected the 36th PGA President at the 92nd PGA Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Ariz.
    • Max Elbin, the 15th President of The PGA of America, dies in December.
    • The PGA of America, which began a connection with Louisville in 1996 by presenting its premier championships, contributing to hundreds of local and statewide charities and supporting minority-owned businesses, is named the first organization to receive the 2008 Champion of Diversity Award by the Louisville Urban League.
    • Jim Antkiewicz, PGA director of golf at The Club at Nevillewood in Presto, Pa., is named the 2008 PGA Golf Professional of the Year.
  • 2009:
    • Mercedes Benz USA becomes an Official Patron of the PGA of America.
    • William Powell named the recipient of the 2009 PGA Distinguished Service Award. Mr. Powell overcame many racial barriers to become the only African-American to design, build, own, and operate a golf course.
    • The PGA of America and the partners of Cat Island Partners Ltd. break ground for the first PGA Village to be developed outside of the United States.
    • The PGA Golf Professional Hall of Fame inducts is eight newest members at the PGA Historical Center in Port St. Lucie, FL. The 2009 inductees are Harry “Cotton” Berrier, Don Essig III, Claude Harmon Sr., Brent Krause, Jim Manthis, Eddie Merrins, Harvey Penick, and Brian Whitcomb.
    • Michael Allen wins the Senior PGA Championship at Canterbury Golf Club in Beachwood, Ohio in his Champions Tour debut.
    • PGA President Jim Remy Lays ceremonial wreath on The Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers with Sgt. Ramon Pidilla in Washington, D.C.
    • Mike Small, men's golf coach at the University of Illinois, captures his second PGA Professional National Championship in five years, in Santa Ana Pueblo, N.M.
    • Y.E. Yang becomes the first Asian-born golfer to win a major golf championship, outlasting Tiger Woods in dramatic fashion to win the 91st PGA Championship at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn.
    • In Scotland, the United States wins the PGA Cup (the Ryder Cup equivalent for PGA club professionals), 17 ½ to 8 ½ over Great Britain & Ireland. The U.S. now owns a 16-5-3 overall record.
    • The International Olympic Committee approves golf as an official sport for both the 2016 and 2020 Summer Games.
    • During the 93rd PGA Annual Meeting in New Orleans, The PGA of America bestowes posthumous membership upon three African American golf pioneers Ted Rhodes, John Shippen and Bill Spiller - who were denied the opportunity to become PGA members during their professional careers. Posthumous honorary membership was granted to Joe Louis, the legendary world heavyweight boxing champion, who became an advocate for diversity in golf.
    • Donna Caponi-Byrnes, a four-time major champion, is named recipient of the 2009 PGA First Lady of Golf Award.
    • Jack Barber, PGA head professional at Meridian Hills Country Club in Indianapolis, Ind., is named the 2009 PGA Golf Professional of the Year.
    • Sue Fiscoe of Modesto, Calif., the first female to serve as a PGA Section president, becomes the first woman district director - representing the Aloha, Northern California and Southern California PGA Sections - appointed to the PGA of America's Board of Directors.