The following descriptions of PGA Special Awards (tabs above) given out each year to the most deserving individuals in the Metropolitan Section.

To nominate a fellow professional please click here for the paper version of the section nomination form.

Alternatively, you can fill out the form below to electronically submit your nomination for Special Met PGA Section Awards.

 

The Bill Strausbaugh Award is designed to recognize PGA Professionals 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.
 

Bill Strausbaugh Award Guidelines:

  • Demonstration of record of service to the Section and the Association.

  • Proven leadership ability.

  • Involvement in civic activities and local charitable causes within the community.

  • Recognized as someone of outstanding character.

Award Winners

Recipient(s)

Year

Mike Gilmore

2017

Grant Turner

2016

George Lewis

2015

John Kennedy

2014

Eden Foster

2013

Jim Bender

2012

Rick Vershure

2011

Nelson Long

2010

Heath Wassem

2009

Darrell Kestner

2008

Joe Felder

2007

Dave Carazo

2006

John Kennedy

2005

Tom Nieporte

2004

Gene Borek

2003

Bobby Heins

2002

Jack Druga

2001

Mike Summa

2000

Rick Meskell

1999

Bobby Heins

1998

Bobby Heins

1997

Rick Meskell

1996

Tom DeBellis

1995

Tom DeBellis

1994

Fred Gipp

1993

Nunzio Ciampi

1992

Glenn Haugsjaa

1991

Jim O'Mara

1990

John Schob

1989

Mike Borsuk

1988

Tom DeBellis

1987

Doug Steffen

1986

Gil McNally

1985

Roy Pace

1984

Roy Pace

1983

William A. Mitchell

1982

William A. Mitchell

1981

Ron Nicol

1980

The "Deacon Palmer Award" bestows special recognition on a PGA Golf Professional who personally displays outstanding integrity, character and leadership, in the effort to overcome a major obstacle in their life. This individual is an unsung hero/heroine at their facility and in their community, who serve to inspire, empower and assist others, both inside and outside of the game.

Requirements

  • Candidate must be a PGA member in good standing.
  • Candidate must be well regarded as a model PGA member.
  • Demonstration and acknowledgement as an individual of outstanding leadership and strong moral character.

Eligibility

The following persons are ineligible:

  • Previous National PGA Golf Professional of the Year award winners;
  • Past Presidents of the Association;
  • Current members of the Association Board of Directors;
  • Nominees for National Office;
  • Class "F" or "Inactive" members;
  • Apprentices;
  • PGA National Headquarters Staff and PGA Section Staff are not eligible for National Awards (Excluding Employees of PGA Golf Properties or Section Golf Properties).

Criteria

Deacon Palmer Award minimum criteria:

  • Candidate must have been a Class ĎAí PGA member in good standing and/or Apprentice for a minimum total of 10 years combined.
  • Candidate must be well regarded as a model PGA member, demonstrating outstanding leadership traits and strong moral character.
  • Candidate has developed the image, reputation, and ability to inspire, empower, and encourage success and achievement in individuals regardless of obstacles, disabilities, and personal challenges or otherwise.
  • Candidate must have maintained a substantial record of service to the PGA of America, fellow PGA Professionals, their facility and the community in the effort to enhance and improve the quality of life for all individuals.
  • Candidate must have maintained a continual record of service and promotion of the game of golf and golf industry.

Guidelines for Selection

  • The candidate will be considered on the following:
  • Their entire PGA career with the primary emphasis on the service and commitment for others and their success regardless of situation; 
  • The performance and service to the Association, fellow PGA Members, and the community to include contributions to building and growing the image of the PGA Professional, the Association and the game of golf while dealing with their own personal difficulty;
  • The significant impacts made on others and ability to inspire and encourage success and achievement in individuals regardless of the personal challenges they face;
  • The significant influence made on Golf Professionals, facilities, and employers in the effort to assist others and better the community;
  • Overall integrity and recognition as a person of outstanding character by PGA Professionals and leaders within the community;
  • Other contributions provided to The PGA.

Other Considerations:

The Deacon Palmer Award will be presented annually at the 99th PGA America Annual Meeting. Consideration for The Deacon Palmer Award will be at the National level only.

The Ely Callaway Award was dedicated to the man who inspired a revolution in the club industry and grew the Callaway Golf Company from a 4-man operation into a giant of the industry. Ely Callaway's dedication to research and technology was matched only by his belief that an educated golf professional and consumer was at the backbone of his business. Mr. Callaway actually appeared at the Met PGA's Spring Forum as a featured speaker in April of 2001, just 3 months before his death from pancreatic cancer.

The Ely Callaway Award recognizes a Met PGA Professional for his or her dedication to education, service and involvement. The award is presented annually at the Section's Spring Meeting to the PGA Professional who amasses the greatest number of MSR credits in the previous year.

Award Recipients

Recipient(s)

Year

TBD

2017

Andy Crane

2016

Heath Wassem

2015

Michael Breed

2014

Michael Breed

2013

Michael Breed

2012

Michael Breed

2011

Michael Breed

2010

Tom Henderson

2009

Tom Henderson

2008

Robert Gable

2007

John Hines

2006

David Young

2005

The Herb Graffis Award is designed to recognize a PGA of America Section for extraordinary and exemplary contributions and achievements in the area of Player Development. This award considers initiatives conducted by the Section, involvement of members in Section and National growth of the game programs, and overall impact on growth of the game.


Herb Graffis Award Guidelines:

  • Sectionís commitment to growth of the game initiatives.
  • Quantity, quality and diversity of player development programs.
  • Active involvement in National player development programs.
  • Participation of Section members in Play Golf America.
  • Inspiration of fellow Sections in the area of player development.
  • Overall impact on growing the game.

The PGA Horton Smith Award recognizes the PGA Professional who is the model educator of PGA Golf Professionals. This award is designed to give special recognition to an individual PGA Professional for outstanding and continuing contributions to professional education.

Horton Smith Award Guidelines:

  • Demonstration of outstanding qualities of leadership.
  • Demonstration of strong moral character.
  • Maintain a substantial record of service to the Association and the game of golf.
  • Well-regarded as a model educator of PGA Golf Professionals.
  • Continuing education records will serve as a resource for verification of programs taught by the nominee.

Recipient(s) Year
Michael Breed 2017
Mike Diffley 2016
Chris Kenney 2015
Michael Shank 2014
Michael Shank 2013
Darrell Kestner 2012
Ryan George 2011
Carl Alexander 2010
John Kennedy 2009
John Hines 2008
Michael Breed 2007
Michael Breed 2006
Nelson Long 2005
Ed Kelly 2004
Brian Crowell 2003
David Young 2002
Brad Worthington 2001
Don Beatty 2000
Brad Worthington 1999
Don Beatty 1998
Tom Henderson 1997
George Lewis 1996
Brendan Walsh 1995
Mike Summa 1994
Greg Hurd 1993
Gene Borek 1992
Jim OíMara 1991
Mike Hebron 1990
Mike Hebron 1989
John Kennedy 1988
Jim McLean 1987
Walter Campbell 1986
John Kennedy 1985
Larry Craig 1984
Tommy Murphy 1983
Carl Lohren 1982
Mike Hebron 1981
Nunzio Ciampi 1980
Ron Nicol 1979
Andy Nusbaum 1978
Bob Watson 1977
Joe Moresco 1976
Charles Beverage 1975
Frank Cardi 1974
Charles Beverage 1973
Tony Marco 1972

The Merchandiser of the Year Award is designed to recognize those PGA Professionals who have excelled as business persons / merchandisers in the promotion of golf. The PGA honors PGA Professionals in three categories: Private, Public and Resort facilities.

Merchandiser of the Year Guidelines:
  • PGA member in good standing
  • Overall credit rating
  • Credit rating within the industry
  • Community involvement
Merchandiser of the Year
(Public Facility)
  Merchandiser of the Year
(Private Club)
 
Recipient(s) Year Recipient(s) Year
Max Galloway 2017 Adam McDaid 2017
Kevin Smith 2016 Sam Wiley 2016
Michael Laudien 2015 Dean Johnson 2015
Darren Stanek 2014 Chris Kenney 2014
Dave Fusco 2013 Tim Shifflett 2013
Mal Galletta III 2012 Peter Cowan 2012
Angela Aulenti 2011 Jack Powers 2011
Tom Avezzano 2010 Jack Druga 2010
Bob Posillico/Doug Solow 2009 Steve Haggerty 2009
Joe Rehor 2008 Michael Crawford 2008
Jimmi Conway 2007 Jim Morris 2007
Keith Miller 2006 Jim Wahl 2006
Andy Carracino 2005 Billy Burke 2005
Fred Gipp 2004 Jim Smoot 2004
Steven Lee 2003 Heath Wassem 2003
Joe Rehor 2002 Ed Nicholson 2002
Doug Jansen 2001 Paul Leslie 2001
Dick Smith 2000 Mike Diffley 2000
Howard Robertson 1999 Charlie Hicks 1999
Angela Aulenti 1998 Eric Feltman 1998
George Cosgrove 1997 Charlie Bolling 1997
Sal Silvestrone 1996 Tom Herzog 1996
Leo McMahon 1995 Don McDougall 1995
Joe Felder 1994 Jim Bender 1994
Tom Lupinacci 1993 Jack McGown 1993
Mike Wands 1992 Walter Campbell 1992
Ron Jensen 1991 John Kennedy 1991
Leo Tabick 1990 Mike Summa 1990
Fred Gipp 1989 Bob Weber 1989
John Paonessa 1988 Doug Steffen 1988
Chuck Workman 1987 Jim Bender 1987
Nick Petrillo 1986 Bob Weber 1986
Tom Lupinacci 1985 Ronnie Pritchett 1985
Mike Hebron 1984 Tommy Murphy 1984
Chuck Workman 1983 John Kennedy 1983
Chuck Workman 1982 Rick Rarick 1982
Vince Grillo 1981 John Schob 1981
Tom Lupinacci 1980 Pete Davison 1980
Mike Borsuk/Ed DiMattia 1979 Bob Watson 1979
Mike Hebron 1978 Tommy Murphy 1978

Merchandiser of the Year (Resort)
Recipient(s) Year
No Winner 2014
No Winner 2013
No Winner 2012
John Forster 2011
No Winner 2010
No Winner 2009
No Winner 2008
No Winner 2007
Chris Caulfield 2006
No Winner 2005
Todd Barker 2004
No Winner 2003
No Winner 2002
Geoff Walsh 2001
No Winner 2000
Patrick Dill 1999
Kevin Smith 1998
No Winner 1997
No Winner 1996
Terence Hughes 1995
Bill Burke 1994
Mike Sander 1993
Bill Nault 1992
Bill Nault 1991
Mike Castelluzzi 1990
No Winner 1989
Matt Kleiner 1988
Jack Breno 1987
Jack Breno 1986
Al Johnston 1985
Steve Downey 1984
Bob DeStefano 1983
Bob Fretwell 1982
Sal Ruggiero 1981
Hubie Smith 1980
Al Johnston 1979
Steve Downey 1978

The Patriot Award is presented 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 valiantly served and protected the United States of America.

The Patriot Award Guidelines:

  • Contributions and support to the United States Armed Forces and its Activity Duty personnel and veterans.
  • Proven interest, concern, and ability to provide opportunities and experience for active duty personnel and veterans to learn and play golf.
  • Demonstration and acknowledgement as an individual of outstanding leadership and strong moral character.
Recipient(s) Year
Andy Crane 2017
Paul Glut 2016
Ray Ford 2015
Greg Bisconti 2014
Ray Ford 2013
John Kennedy 2012
Larry Refvik 2011
John Hines 2010

The Player Development Award is designed to recognize a PGA Professional for extraordinary and exemplary contributions and achievements in the area of player development. This award considers the PGA Professionalís growth of the game leadership commitment at the Section and National levels and the impact made at the facility. Player Development Award Guidelines: Contributions to Section and National Play Golf America initiatives. Quantity, quality and diversity of player development programs. Use of Play Golf America tools and resources. Quality of best practices, including uniqueness of ideas, increase in rounds / revenues, retention and customer satisfaction. Inspiration of fellow PGA Professionals in the area of player development.


 
Recipient(s) Year
Monique Thoresz 2017
Ben Hoffhine 2016
Dave Stevenson 2015
Max Galloway 2014
Tom Henderson 2013
Greg Bisconti & Ambry Bishop 2012
Nick Maselli 2011
Michael Laudien 2010
Paul Giordano & Todd Bordonaro 2009
Vinnie Pauroso 2008
Rodney Loesch 2007
Mike Wade 2006
Recipient(s) Year
Dave Gosiewski 2017
Brad Worthington 2016
Nelson Long 2015
Darrell Kestner 2014
Joe Felder 2013
Michael Summa 2012
Tom Henderson 2011
Dave Carazo 2010
Tom DeBellis 2009
Rick Meskell 2008
Ed Nicholson 2007
Greg Hurd 2006
Pete Donnelly 2005
Don McDougall 2004
John McPhee 2003
Rod Loesch 2002
Rick Vershure 2001
Bobby Heins 2000
Stan Mosel 1999
Jim Bender 1998
John Kennedy 1997
Tom Nieporte 1996
Jim O'Mara 1995
Nunzio Ciampi 1994
Joe Ennis 1993
Bob DeStefano 1992
John Schob 1991
Jim Albus 1990
Gil McNally 1989
Michael Homa 1988
Roy Pace 1987
Lloyd Monroe 1986
Gil Cavanaugh 1985
Gil McNally 1984
William A. Mitchell 1983
Mike Hebron 1982
Harold Kolb 1981
Robert Joyce 1980
William A. Mitchell 1979
George Lewis 1978
Jerry Coats 1977
Ron Letellier 1976
Craig Shankland 1975
Craig Shankland 1974
Elmer Voight 1973
Gene Borek 1972
Joe Moresco 1971
Bob Watson 1970
Tony Marco 1969
Frank Cardi 1968
Francis Zeray 1967
Pat Cici 1966
Jack Sabol 1964
Mike Turnesa 1963
Jack Mallon 1962
Jack Mallon 1961
Jack Sabol 1960
Al Ciuci 1958
John Inglis 1957
Harry Cooper 1956

In 1973, the legendary Slammer came to Westchester Country Club for the Met PGA's Annual Spring Forum. During the program, he was also honored by the Section as one of the five greatest players of all time. Snead's appearance drew a record crowd that still stands to this day of over 400 professionals and guests. In addition to honoring Snead for his history of playing accomplishments, the Met PGA announced that in his honor the Sam Snead Award would be presented annually for distinguished service.

The Sam Snead Award Criteria
The Snead Award criteria was left intentionally vague although the intent was obvious. The award would be presented to an individual in recognition of his or her contributions to the game of golf, the PGA and the Met Section. While all of the other Special Awards are presented only to PGA Members, the Snead Award could honor professionals or amateurs and its list of recipients reads like a who's who of golf in the Metropolitan area.

Recipient(s) Year
TBD 2017
Charlie Robson 2016
John Kennedy 2015
Rodney Loesch 2014
Mary Beth Childs 2013
Jeff Hall 2012
Robert L. Watson 2011
Michael Hebron 2010
Paul Dillon 2009
Dave Catalano 2008
Gil McNally 2007
Phil Laskawy 2006
Jim Albus 2005
Tom Nieporte 2004
Gene Borek 2003
Ely Callaway 2002
Dave Marr 2001
Metropolitan Golf Ass'n. 2000
Joe Moresco 1999
George Sands 1998
Michael Feidelson 1997
William A. Mitchell 1996
Arnold Kerner 1995
Lowell Schulman 1994
Edward T. Schneider 1993
Bob Joyce 1992
Paul Runyan 1991
Gene Sarazen 1990
Howard Treiber 1989
Met. Golf Course Supts. 1988
Dr. Richard Silver 1987
Mike Turnesa 1986
Bud Miller 1985
James R. Hand 1984
Frank Cardi 1983
Claude Harmon 1982
Harry Cooper 1981
Dana Mozley 1980
William M. Jennings 1979
Joseph C. Dey, Jr. 1978
Vincent Draddy 1977
Guido Cribari 1976
Al Brosch 1975
Jack Mallon 1974

The Teacher of the Year Award is designed to recognize a PGA Professional who is an outstanding teacher of golf among the ranks of PGA membership. This award is based on a professionalís overall performance in teaching; unusual, innovative and special teaching programs initiated or implemented; articles published; as well as outstanding golfers the professional has instructed.

Teacher of the Year Award Guidelines

  • Recognized as an outstanding teacher of golf among the ranks of PGA membership.
  • Initiation and/or implementation of unusual, innovative and/or special teaching programs.
  • Publication of articles, books, magazines, etc.
  • Instruction of outstanding golfers.
Recipient(s) Year
Jeff Gschwind 2017
Kirk Oguri 2016
John Hobbins 2015
Jeff Warne 2014
Mike Diffley 2013
Michael Jacobs 2012
Joe Laurentino 2011
Harvey Lannak 2010
Michael Breed 2009
Bobby Heins 2008
Cheryl Anderson 2007
Carl Alexander 2006
Pat Eggeling 2005
Tom Sutter 2004
David Czaja 2003
Jerry Impellittiere 2002
C.J. Reeves 2001
Michael Breed 2000
Nelson Long 1999
Tom Patri 1998
Darrell Kestner 1997
Gene Borek 1996
Martin Nolletti 1995
Bill Greenleaf 1994
Bob Joyce 1993
Joe Moresco 1992
Gil McNally 1991
Harry Cooper 1990
Carl Lohren 1989
Roy Pace 1988
Mike Hebron 1987
Jim McLean 1986

The PGA Youth Player Development Award (formally the Junior Golf Leader Award) recognizes the PGA Professional who is a leader in junior golf and who reflects the ideals of those who work with youth.

Youth Player Development Award Guidelines:

  • Demonstration of involvement in the promotion and development of junior golf at the club level.
  • Support of National junior golf programs.
  • Proven interest, concern and ability to provide opportunities and experience for junior to learn and play golf.
  • Recognized as someone of outstanding character.
Recipient(s) Year
Ben Hoffhine 2017
Bill Makedon 2016
Peter Procops 2015
Nick Maselli 2014
Stuart Waack 2013
George Dixon 2012
Joe Malloy 2011
Rich Jones 2010
Jim Smoot 2009
Tom Kuhn 2008
Stuart Waack 2007
Kevin Morris 2006
Vincent Pauroso 2005
Mike Wade 2004
Joe Felder 2003
Charlie Bolling 2002
David Stevenson 2001
Bob Posillico & Pat Morris 2000
Leo McMahon 1999
Bob DeStefano 1998
Bobby Jenkins 1997
Peter Cowan 1996
Joe Felder 1995
Bryan Fitzpatrick 1994
Tim Nevin 1993
Dave Alvarez 1992
NYC Borough Coordinators
   Bill Castner, Tony Chateauvert
   Peter Cowan, Bill Korte, John Vuono
1991
Paul Miner 1990
Dale Shankland 1990
Paul Miner 1989
Jim Hundertmark 1988
Billy Castner 1987
Leo Tabick 1986
Paul Miner 1985
Paul Miner 1984
Barney Corrigan 1983
Mike Hebron 1982

"The harder you work, the luckier you get." - Gary Player

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