Daytona Beach, Fla., October 13, 2016—The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Teaching and Club Professionals (T&CP) membership has selected the following members for national recognition as a result of their achievements: Marvol Barnard, Haven Golf Course, Green Valley, Arizona, Teacher of the Year; Mary-Lee Cobick, Golf Professional Services, Inc., West Palm Beach, Florida, Professional of the Year; Stacy Miller-Arndt, Congressional Country Club, Bethesda, Maryland, Junior Golf Leadership of the Year; and Mary Ritchie, UC Riverside, Riverside, California Coach of the Year.
The national award winners were selected by the LPGA T&CP membership’s Executive Committee from the pool of the section award winners voted on by officers of the six regional sections: Central, International, Midwest, Northeast, Southeast, and Western.
Teacher of the Year, Marvol Barnard
The LPGA established the LPGA National Teacher of the Year Award in 1958. The award is given annually to the female golf professional who has most exemplified her profession during the year.
Currently, Marvol Barnard serves as LPGA T&CP Central Section President, a position she has held for the last six years, in which she has played a crucial role in creating Meet and Greets that are now nationwide events, creating frequent communications with the Section. Outside of those duties, Barnard serves her organization by creating and leading the National Member Growth, Communication, and New Member Committees.
“I am thrilled and so incredibly honored to be this year’s recipient of the LPGA National Teacher of the Year Award,” Barnard said. “To have my name added to the list of outstanding past honorees is both extremely humbling and wonderful. I am so appreciative to every teacher, student, friend and family member who has been with me on this journey, because I could never do what I do without the support of my team. I’m a proud product of the LPGA’s student centered teaching program, and I’m so grateful to have been taught by the best, to be the best. I am thankful every single day to be a member of the LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals.”
What makes Barnard stand out among her peers is that she created a Player Development Pathway, creating tremendous growth in play and participation that brings together all aspects of her professional life. Her programs include a Golf101 program, The Next Step, Go Go Golf, Play Smart Golf, Wine and Nine, the Swing School, and many more.
Barnard’s passion for education has earned her several industry certifications, and she has attended countless seminars and training programs, which includes holding dual LPGA/PGA Class A certifications, certifications in Aimpoint, Golf Coaches Association, Fluid Motion Factor, and TPI.
During her time in the golf industry, Barnard has been the recipient of several prestigious awards such as the 2016 and 2013 PGA SW Section Southern Chapter Player Development Award, the 2014 LPGA Central Section Marilynn Smith Service Award, the 2013 LPGA Nancy Lopez Golf Achievement Award, and the 2010 LPGA Central Section teacher of the Year Award. In 2012, she was named one of Golf Digest’s Top 50 Women Teachers.
Professional of the Year, Mary-Lee Cobick
The LPGA T&CP Professional of the Year was established in 1980 and is awarded annually to an LPGA Teaching and Club Professional member directly involved in the entire golf operation.
Mary-Lee Cobick combines her passion for both golf and business by managing and co-owning Golf Professional Services, Inc., managing the daily operation of the three Palm Beach County municipal facilities.
“I am truly honored to receive the LPGA National Professional of the Year award,” Cobick said. “I have always felt this award best represented my role in the golf industry for the past twenty-one years. Thank you to the LPGA and their team members for their wonderful leadership. I would like to share this honor with my family, mentors, business partners, as well as every current and past staff members who have contributed to my career.”
In her role as a golf professional, Cobick oversees eighteen contracted professionals, ten employees, and over forty sub-contracted employees, while teaching over four-hundred private lessons a year and an instructor for EWGA, French Canadian, physically challenged, Special Olympics, junior development programs, and private group clinics.
Within the last few years, Cobick has been co-author of the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf Teaching PLAYbook in 2015. As well as serving as the coach for three winning teams at LPGA National Team Championship at Kiawah Island in 2013, she is also a member of the Canadian PGA, is a US Kids Golf Certified Instructor, First Tee Instructor, and has been a Guest Speaker at Keiser University College of Golf for Retail Management Class.
Cobick is the President of the Junior Golf Foundation of America, Inc. (JGFA) who provides over 7,500 junior participants in golf instruction every year, where she is responsible for program development and fundraising with different community programs, including hosting an LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program since 1997.
Junior Golf Leadership, Stacy Miller-Arndt
The LPGA T&CP Junior Golf Leadership Award was established in 2012 and is awarded annually to an LPGA Teaching and Club Professional member who excels in the area of teaching and promoting golf for juniors.
Stacy Miller-Arndt serves as Junior Golf Director at the Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland, where she oversees and manages the Junior Golf program, which includes organizing and coordinating volunteer programs, tournaments, interclub teams, golf camps, PGA Junior League, and clinics for junior programs.
Miller-Arndt has been named Top 50 US Kids Instructor from 2004 to 2009, and US Kids Master Instructor in 2010. The golf facility where she works was given the Top Junior Golf Program Club Award by Golf Digest in 2004, and she was featured by USA Today regarding her juniors.
“I am extremely humbled and pleased to be named the 2016 LPGA Junior Golf Leader,” Miller-Arndt said. “Receiving this award is such an amazing honor. I am proud to be a LPGA member and to have the support of my fellow LPGA professionals. I am extremely grateful for the opportunities Congressional Country Club and its membership has afforded me and the support of junior golf. It is so rewarding to see how hard my juniors have worked and continue to work to develop their games.”
Miller-Arndt’s approach to Junior Golf stands apart form the rest because of her focus on keeping golf fun, developing lifelong relationships with her juniors by keeping tem actively involved in the program as they get older, with the ultimate goal of encouraging her juniors to learn and enjoy golf and develop lifelong friendships.
In the past year, in addition to her facility’s Junior Golf Program, Miller-Arndt has been coach for Emmett 18 hole Interclub Team and for folks and Strausbaugh Interclub Teams, has been involved in the PeeWee Coaching Series, Junior Golf Camps Pro/Juniors Tournaments, the PGA Junior League, and the Coaching Series.
Coach of the Year, Mary Ritchie
The LPGA T&CP Coach of the Year Award was established in 1980 and is awarded annually to an LPGA Teaching and Club Professional member who is actively engaged in teaching and/or coaching golf at the collegiate or high school level.
For the past three years, Mary Ritchie has been Head Women’s Golf Coach at UC Riverside and interim Head Men’s Golf Coach for the last Fall Season, where she broke program records by coaching both the men’s and women’s teams in to winning the conference championship for the first time in the history of the athletics department and was advanced to NCAA post-season play in the same year.
“I am very grateful and incredibly honored to be this year’s recipient of the LPGA National Coach of the Year award,” Ritchie said. “I couldn’t be more proud to be a member of the LPGA T&CP, an organization that continues to be on the cutting edge of golf instruction and elite coaching. To be among so many accomplished professionals and be selected means a great deal to me particularly, since I’ve poured my heart and soul into building our golf program at UC Riverside. This award is really a joint accomplishment for our team, and I’m thrilled to share it with each of my remarkable student-athletes.”
Outside of coaching, Ritchie served as LPGA T&CP Western Section Secretary and was awarded the LPGA Western Section Coach of the Year. Before coming to coaching, Ritchie was Director of Instruction at the Ranch at Moreno Valley from 2006-2014.
Ritchie’s coaching stands apart from her peers because she does not focus only on player development but also fundraising, community engagement, and constant program promotion and marketing, all of which she finds tremendously rewarding. Under her direction, the UC Riverside Women’s team accomplished three tournament team wins, two individual player wins, was named Big West Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year, Big West conference Freshman Player of the Year, and two players placed on the All-Conference First Team. The UC Riverside Men’s team also captured a Big West Conference win, as well as advancing to NCAA Regionals as a team and as individual players to the NCAA Nationals, which is a first in the program’s history.
Outside of the LPGA, Ritchie serves as an advisory board member for the SCGA Collegian and Young Executives and SCPGA Junior Tour. She is a member of the Women’s Golf Coaches Association, the Golf Coaches Association of America, and is a regular speaker at the Riverside Rotary Club. Ritchie was also the recipient of UC Riverside’s Star Award for outstanding achievement two years in a row, and was rated in the top three Women’s Collegiate Coaches in the Area by the Press Enterprise News for 2016.