DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., September 15, 2016 —Pia Nilsson, an Honorary member of the LPGA Teaching & Club Professionals, joins an elite group of her peers as a recipient of the 2016 Ellen Griffin Rolex Award.
The Ellen Griffin Rolex Award, instituted by the LPGA T&CP membership in 1989 to honor the late Ellen Griffin, recognizes an individual, male or female, who had made a major contribution to the teaching of golf and who emulates Griffin’s spirit, love, and dedication to students, teachers, teaching skills, and the game of golf. Griffin, who passed away in 1986, was one of the best-known women’s golf teaching professionals in American history.
Nilsson has been recognized as one of the best golf teachers in the United States, having been ranked #1 on the list of Women Golf Teachers in America by Golf Digest, awarded the Executive Women’s Golf Association Leadership Award in 2005, the 5-star professional award from the PGA of Europe in 2004, Inducted into the National College Coaches Association Player Hall of Fame in 2001, the King of Sweden’s Medal of the 8th dimension with Royal Blue Ribbon for Leadership in spots, among numerous other accomplishments including co-creating the equally successful Vision54 Golf Schools, which have been repeatedly named one of the best golf schools in America.
In addition to Nilsson’s accolades, she also served as the First Tee Programming and Curriculum Consultant from 1998 to 2005, was Senior Head Coach for the Swedish National Teams in 1999, was a member of the board of the Swedish Sports Academy from 1999 to 2000, Captain for the European Solheim Cup Team in 1998 and Vice-Captain in 1996, Member of the Board of the Swedish PGA from 1989 to 1992, Member of the Board of the Women’s Professional Golf European Tour from 1987 to 1988, served on the LPGA Player’s council from 1985 to 1986, and was an LPGA Tour Player from 1983 to 1987.
“I feel extremely honored to have received the 2016 Ellen Griffin Rolex Award and be part of an extraordinary group of game influencers,” Nilsson said. “It fuels my passion to stay on the journey to be the best I can be for the game and golfers around the globe.”
Currently, Nilsson works actively with LPGA T&CP Class A member Lynn Marriott on Vision54, a program which has enjoyed receiving the highest marks by peers of teacher/coach training. The program follows the belief that all players have the ability to potential to excel, a mindset that Nilsson embraces in her life and career as an educator.
Past recipients of the Ellen Griffin Rolex Award are: Peggy Kirk Bell, 1989; Linda Craft, 1990; Shirley Englehorn, 1991; Harvey Penick, 1992; Goldie Bateson, 1993; Carol Clark Johnson, 1994; Joanne Winter, 1995; Ann Casey Johnstone, 1996; Dr. DeDe Owens, 1997; Shirley Spork, 1998; Betty Hicks, 1999; Gary Wiren, 2000; Penny Zavichas, 2001; Annette Thompson, 2002; Dr. Barbara B. Smith, 2003; Marjorie Burns, 2004; Pat Lange, 2005; Donna White, 2006; Betsy Cullen, 2007; Lynn Marriott, 2008; Kay McMahon, 2009; Mary Beth McGirr, 2010, Dr. Debbie Crews, 2011; Dr. Betsy Clark, 2012; Kathy Murphy, 2013, Kerry Graham, 2014; and Dana Rader in 2015.
Rolex is the official timepiece of the LPGA and sponsors of many of the LPGA’s annual awards, including the Ellen Griffin Rolex Award, Rolex Player of the Year and Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year awards. Rolex honors the LPGA Tour’s Rolex First-Time Winners and is a supporting sponsor of the annual LPGA T&CP National Championship. At tournament sites, Rolex has a presence by providing the official time at selected tournaments and advertises in many event programs.