Letter from the Central Section Vice President – Peggy Gustafson

Peggy GustafsonThe Marilynn Smith 7th Annual Scholarship Tournament will be played on Monday, November 16, 2015 at Pebblecreek CC in Goodyear, Az. LPGA Hall of Famer Nancy Lopez will be this years’ Honoree Chairperson.  This event was begun by LPGA Founder Marilynn Smith in Dallas, Texas and has continued on in Arizona where Ms. Smith now resides.  The Marilynn Smith Scholarship is awarded to high school seniors who will be playing golf at the collegiate level. Twenty $5,000 scholarships were awarded in 2014 to the most highly qualified candidates.

A few Fun Marilynn Facts:

She is a founding member of both the LPGA Tour as well as the LPGA Teaching Division.  The Teaching Division was voted in in 1959 while Marilynn was the President of the LPGA Tour.  It had failed the vote in 1958.

Marilynn is a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame and the LPGA Teaching Hall of Fame.  She has over 21 victories, including 2 majors.  She was the first woman TV announcer for a Men’s  Professional Tour event.  She traveled the world, promoting golf for Spalding Golf Company and also participated in Shells Wonderful World of Golf.  Her nickname is Miss Personality, and, if you have had the privilege to meet her, you will understand why.  At 80 plus years of age, she still represents the LPGA by attending the Founders Cup and this year’s KPMG PGA Women’s Championship.  She continues to give and promote the game of golf unselfishly, a true Ambassador.

Please try to support this event by bringing a team and participating. If you cannot participate, please consider donating items to be used as Pro-Am prizes or in the silent auction.  The Marilynn Smith Scholarship Fund through the LPGA Foundation will be awarding twenty $5,000 scholarships again this year. Raffle tickets are also available.  The LPGA Central Section Marilynn Smith Service Award will also be presented at this wonderful event.


On another note, our section is so geographically diverse many of our members are “In Season”.  Some are in the “soft season” and some like myself have the privilege of teaching in two locales.  Here in Alaska, we are experiencing a warmer than average summer which lends itself to 10-14 hour teaching days.   On June 20, which marks the beginning of Solstice, Anchorage Golf Course hosted 3 full Field Shotgun events, 7:30 am, 1:30 pm and 7:00 pm, followed by the Midnight Putters.  I am still in awe of Head Professionals and Directors of Golf who, with your staff, make these events run so smoothly. I am so proud of all of my LPGA sisters who fill all roles and responsibilities in the golf industry.

On a personal note, please keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I undergo a full knee replacement when I return to Arizona in September.  Thirty-four years of teaching and standing on my feet has taking a toll on my right knee.  Looking forward to the replacement, and fingers crossed, another 34 years of teaching.


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