Minnesota PGA Announces 2017 Award Winners
The Minnesota PGA announces the award winners for the 2017 season. We would like to congratulate these PGA Professionals for their commitment, leadership and excellence in promoting golf at their facilities and in their communities. The 2017 Minnesota PGA award winners were celebrated at the Minnesota PGA Fall Meeting today at Rush Creek Golf Club.
Tom Abts, Head Golf Professional and General Manager at Deer Run Golf Club in Victoria, is the Minnesota PGA Golf Professional of the Year. Abts has been awarded in the past with Public Facility Promoter of the Year in 2011. His achievements as a PGA professional in addition to his service to the game of golf have been second to none.
Minnesota PGA Teacher of the Year is Luke Benoit, Director of Instruction at Interlachen Country Club in Edina. The Youth Development Award will be given to Coralee Jorgensen, Executive Director of the First Tee of South Dakota, and the Player Development Award belongs to Nick Pelle, Center Manager and Director of Instruction at GolfTEC in Maple Grove for their relentless efforts in player development. Assistant Professional of the Year honors reside with Mike Marshall, Assistant Golf Professional at Oak Ridge Country Club in Hopkins.
The Facility Promoters of the Year are those who go above and beyond in their contributions to their facilities. Criteria considered for these awards include golf programs offered, tournament operations, merchandising, rules, promotion, and facility history. The 2017 Facility Promoters of the Year are as follows: Lisa Schwinden of Osgood Golf Course in Fargo, N.D. for the public facility category, Tom Skoglund of Town & Country Club in St. Paul in the private facility category and Jack Wawro at Grand View Lodge in Nisswa the resort facility category.
The PGA Bill Strausbaugh Award honors go to PGA Professional Greg Stang of Wilson Golf Group. This specific award gives special recognition to an individual that displays outstanding integrity, character, and leadership through a commitment to mentoring and making significant impacts on the careers of PGA Professionals.
PGA Professional Jeff Drimel is the PGA Horton Smith Award recipient. This award honors an individual who represents the model educator of PGA Golf Professionals; it is designed to give special recognition to a PGA Professional for outstanding and continuous contributions to professional education.
Alan Cull, the General Manager at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine, was named this year’s Patriot Award winner. The PGA Patriot Award bestows special recognition to a PGA professional who personifies patriotism through the game of golf and demonstrates unwavering commitment and dedication to the men and women who have served and protected the United States of America.
PGA Steve Weidner Award is Bill Israelson of Vintage Golf Course at Staples. This is awarded to an individual whose total contributions to the game are extraordinary and beyond normal day-to-day activities. This award embraces a wide range of services throughout the game of golf. Past winners include PGA Professionals, Media Personnel, and tournament founders and operators.
The Minnesota PGA also recognized the four Players of the Year. Brent Snyder of Troy Burne Golf Club is the 2017 Player of the Year. Snyder had eight Section victories including wins at the Minnesota PGA Professional Championship and Minnesota PGA Match Play Championship. Don Berry of Edinburgh USA receives Senior Player of the Year with four Section victories highlighted by a Minnesota Senior Open title. Women’s Player of the Year is Angie Ause and Assistant Player of the Year goes to Tim Brovold.