Golf Association of Michigan Elects Jim Kohl President

Jim Kohl is the new president of the Golf Association of Michigan. He succeeds Richard Topp.

Kohl was introduced at the GAM’s annual meeting on May 5 at Muskegon Country Club. He is a member of Meadowbrook Country Club.

Full press release follows:

MUSKEGON – Jim Kohl is the new president of the Golf Association of Michigan.

Kohl, a retired lawyer, was introduced during the GAM’s annual meeting May 5 at Muskegon Country Club. A member of Northville’s Meadowbrook Country Club, Kohl follows MCC’s Richard Topp as president. Kohl said he is excited to give back to the game.

“I want to help golf meet its challenges,” he said.

The annual meeting also included the announcement of its annual awards; a keynote address by Bradley Klein, the GAM’s architecture editor for Golfweek magazine; the United States Golf Association update by USGA Regional Director Tyler Riggin; the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation update by MTF Executive Director Gordie LaFontaine; and the honoring of the 2013 GAM Players of the Year by GAM Championship Committee Chairman Steve Braun.

The annual award winners included:

The GAM Distinguished Service Award was presented to John D. Standish Jr., GAM president emeritus and a member of one of golf’s leading families.

  • The GAM Club Rep of the Year went to Charles Deupree of White Lake Golf Club.
  • The Course Raters of the Year are Bill Potere of Rochester Hills and Adrianne Danziesen-Clor of Osseo. They were unable to attend.
  • John Fulling of Kalamazoo Country Club received the Superintendent of Merit Award.
  • Recipients of the 2014 GAM Standish Awards as Evans Scholars are Michael Shook (University of Michigan) and Robert Walters (Michigan State University). Shook was unable to attend.Topp, the popular outgoing president known as “Topper,” bid an emotional farewell as an officer and was praised for his efforts by the new president.

    “He went through some health problems himself, and with his family, but he always showed up at the meetings ready to work, organized and prepared to give of himself,” Kohl said. “He has inspired all of us.”

    Each person who attended the annual meeting received a copy of Klein’s latest book, “Wide Open Fairways.” In his address, Klein used a slide show and talked about his views on architecture and various golf courses, and praised Muskegon Country Club.

    “This is a golf course that more people should know about,” he said.

    Klein visited in recent years and presented the club with a list of ideas for keeping the course true to its original design elements. It’s a Tom Bendelow design, which was redesigned in 1920 by Donald Ross. Klein is considered a leading expert on architecture and Ross. MCC was the host club of the 2013 Michigan Amateur Championship won by Andrew Chapman of Traverse City.

    Brad Bastion of Clinton Township, Christine Meier of Rochester Hills, Greg Reynolds of Grand Blanc, Donna Benford of Linden, Andrew Walker of Battle Creek and Hailey Hrynewich of Muskegon were cited as 2013 Players of the Year by Braun. The six standout golfers topped their GAM Honor Roll categories based on their tournament performances through the golf season.

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