2017 Michigan Section PGA Special Award Winners Announced

2017 Michigan Section PGA Special Award Winners Announced2017 Michigan Section PGA Special Award Winners Announced

EAST LANSING, MI – Kevin McKinley, Golf Director at Treetops Resort, and newly inducted Michigan PGA President, has captured the 2017 Michigan Section PGA Golf Professional of the Year award. This prestigious honor is awarded to the professional that has demonstrated outstanding qualities of leadership and strong moral character. The individual must also maintain a substantial record of service to the Association and game of golf and be well-regarded as a model PGA Golf Professional. Kevin was chosen by his peers for the award based on his overall performance as a Golf Professional, service to the Section and the Association, leadership ability, image and ability to inspire others and his promotion and growth of the game.

Jason Guss, Director of Instruction at Jason Guss Golf Academy, was awarded the 2017 Michigan Section PGA Teacher of the Year. Jason was honored for his overall impact on teaching and coaching at his facility along with his innovative and special teaching programs he implemented.

Dean Marks, Golf Director at Milham Park Golf Course, has been selected by the Michigan Section PGA as the 2017 recipient of the Player Development Award. This award recognizes a PGA Golf Professional, who has displayed extraordinary and exemplary contribution and achievement in the area of player development. It also considers the PGA Professional’s growth of the game leadership, commitment at the Section and National levels in the player development arena, and the meaningful impact made at the facility.

Rocky Mullendore, Assistant Professional at Travis Pointe Country Club, was named the 2017 Michigan Section PGA Assistant Golf Professional of the Year. Rocky’s strengths as a player, teacher, merchandiser, tournament administrator and overall golf professional all contributed to his success at his facility and the game of golf.

Aaron Waltz, Association Golf Administrator at Ferris State University’s PGA Golf Management Program, has been selected by the Michigan Section PGA as the recipient of the 2017 Horton Smith Award. The Horton Smith Award is awarded annually to a PGA member for his outstanding contributions to professional education. Waltz reflects this commitment through his day-to-day activities in the Michigan Section PGA.

Jeff O’Malley, General Manager at Pilgrim’s Run Golf Club, has been selected by as the Michigan Section PGA’s 2017 recipient of the Bill Strausbaugh Award. Jeff was honored for his outstanding integrity, character, and leadership through a commitment to mentoring and making significant impacts on the careers of PGA Professionals. Established in 1979, the Bill Strausbaugh Award is presented to a PGA Professional who by their day-to-day efforts, have distinguished themselves by mentoring their fellow PGA Professionals in improving their employment situations and through service to the community. The award reflects the characteristics and qualities of Strausbaugh, a Middle Atlantic PGA Master Professional who died in 1999.

Scott Wilson, a PGA Teaching Professional at Bay Meadows Family Golf Course, has been selected by the Michigan Section PGA as the 2017 recipient of the Youth Player Development Award. This award bestows special recognition on a PGA Golf Professional, who has displayed extraordinary and exemplary contribution and achievement in the area of youth player development. The award considers the PGA Professional’s focus on Youth through their growth of the game leadership, commitment at the Section and National levels in the youth player development arena, and the meaningful impact made upon youth through the introduction and participation in the game.

The 2017 Merchandiser of the Year for public golf facilities by the Michigan Section PGA was awarded to Ian Ziska, Head Professional at Katke Golf Course at Ferris State University. This award recognizes excellence in business and merchandising at public golf facilities as well as innovation in displays, merchandizing techniques, staff training and overall success and growth.

Jeremy Lathwell, Head Professional at Walnut Creek Country Club, has been named the 2017 Merchandiser of the Year for private golf facilities and Zack Chapin, Head Professional at Arcadia Bluffs Golf Club, has been named the 2017 Merchandiser of the Year for resort golf facilities by the Michigan Section PGA.

Doug Bell, General Manager at Manistee National Golf and Resort, has been selected by Michigan Section PGA as the 2017 recipient of the Patriot Award. Doug was honored for personifying patriotism through the game of golf and demonstrating unwavering commitment and dedication to the men and women who have valiantly served and protected the United States of America. The Patriot Award originated in 2008 following the inspiration of Patriot Day founder Major Dan Rooney, a PGA Professional from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.

Since its founding in 1916, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion dollar golf industry. By creating and delivering world-class championships and innovative programs, The PGA of America elevates the public’s interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. As The PGA nears its centennial, the PGA brand represents the very best in golf.

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