AUSTIN, Texas – The PGA of America’s 101st Annual Meeting, Nov. 1-3, will focus on the PGA Member and growing the game of golf. Delegates will gather at the Hilton Austin to plan the path for the Association’s future.
The meeting will be accentuated by presentations of the PGA National Awards, PGA of America Hall of Fame and PGA Distinguished Service Award.
Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017
The PGA of America will proudly recognize the 2017 National Awards winners in the Austin Grand Ballroom at 6 p.m., for their unwavering commitment to represent the PGA Professional and the game of golf at the highest of levels. The PGA of America National Awards program annually acknowledges PGA Members for their outstanding performances both on and off the course. Hosted by David Marr III, the celebration will honor 11 deserving PGA Members led by PGA Professional of the Year Darrell Kestner and PGA Teacher of the Year David Leadbetter.
• PGA Golf Professional of the Year: Darrell Kestner, PGA, Deepdale Golf Club—Manhasset, New York
• PGA Teacher of the Year: David Leadbetter, PGA, David Leadbetter Golf Academy—ChampionsGate, Florida
• PGA Youth Player Development Award: Brendon Elliott, PGA, Little Linksters LLC— Deltona, Florida
• Bill Strausbaugh Award: John Kennedy, PGA Life Member, formerly Westchester C.C.—Rye, New York
• Horton Smith Award: Jeff Adkerson, PGA Master Professional, Mississippi State University—Starkville, Mississippi
• PGA Player Development Award: Tom Morton, PGA Master Professional, Haggin Oaks Golf Complex—Sacramento, California
• Patriot Award: Kevin McKinley, PGA, Treetops Resort—Gaylord, Michigan
• Deacon Palmer Award: Sam Depe III, PGA, Hickory Heights Golf Club—Bridgeville, Pennsylvania
• PGA Merchandiser of the Year–Private Facilities: Mike Strlekar, PGA, Montclair Golf Club—West Orange, New Jersey
• PGA Merchandiser of the Year–Public Facilities: Mark Pfingston, PGA, Bear Dance Golf Club—Denver
• PGA Merchandiser of the Year–Resort Facilities: Zack Chapin, PGA, Arcadia Bluffs Golf Club– Arcadia, Michigan
• Herb Graffis Award: Gateway PGA Section (parts of Missouri and Illinois)*
*The Herb Graffis Award will be presented separately on Thursday, Nov. 2.
Thursday, Nov. 2
The meeting’s Opening Session will feature YUM! Brands Executive Chair David Novak as the keynote speaker, along with a Leadership Session led by Asuka Nakahara, Partner for Triton Atlantic Partners and a Director for Comcast Corporation. A special Folds of Honor presentation will be given by its Founder Maj. Dan Rooney, PGA. It will be followed by a moving discussion about PGA HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) presented by PGA HOPE Coordinator Chris Nowak, a disabled veteran. In addition, the Gateway PGA Section will be presented the Herb Graffis Award, which recognizes a PGA Section for extraordinary and exemplary contributions and achievements in Player Development.
Seven new inductees into the PGA of America Hall of Fame are led by PGA Honorary Member Gary Player, LPGA Tour star Mickey Wright and pioneering PGA and LPGA Professional Renee Powell. They will be honored in a ceremony hosted by NBC/Golf Channel’s Jimmy Roberts, in the Austin Grand Ballroom at 6:30 p.m. Originated in 1940 at the suggestion of famed sportswriter Grantland Rice, the PGA of America Hall of Fame honors and recognizes individuals who through their lives, careers, service and support have made significant and enduring contributions to the PGA of America in its mission to grow the game of golf.
• Gary Player, PGA Honorary Member
• Renee Powell, PGA/LPGA
• George Henry Schneiter, PGA (deceased)
• Mike Schultz, PGA
• Joe Tesori, PGA
• Lew Worsham, PGA (deceased)
• Mickey Wright, LPGA
In addition, Mark and Debi Rolfing will receive the PGA Distinguished Service Award for their leadership and humanitarian qualities.
Friday, Nov. 3
Three new District Directors are scheduled to be sworn-in to the PGA of America Board of Directors on Friday, Nov. 3. The Board is comprised of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Honorary President and 17 directors who establish Association policy. The Directors include representatives from each of the PGA’s 14 Districts, two Independent Directors and a member of the PGA Tour.
• District 4: Steven Aloi, PGA, Bellevue Country Club, in Cortland, New York
(Central New York, Tri-State, Western New York PGA Sections)
• District 8: David Schneider, PGA/CCM, Wakonda Club in Des Moines, Iowa
(Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska PGA Sections)
• District 9: Ron Rawls, PGA, Crane Creek Country Club, in Boise, Idaho
(Colorado, Rocky Mountain, Utah PGA Sections)