Women in Golf Wednesday!


Karen Palacios-Jansen

Where you live:

Mooresville, North Carolina (suburb of Charlotte)

Where you work & what you do:

I own my own golf events company called Swing Blade Enterprises and I operate out of Trump National Charlotte in Mooresville, North Carolina.  I teach golf, Pilates, and do golf-fitness training.  I developed a golf-fitness system called Cardiogolf.  It is a class that I teach at Trump National Charlotte and at 15 to Fit Pilates, Barre and Fitness Studio. It is also a program offered online at Cardiogolf.com.

How long have you been an LPGA member?

I became a member in 1994.

How was the process of becoming a member for you?

To be honest, I remember it being a little overwhelming at first, but now looking back I realize why it was so important to learn all aspects of teaching the game.  I couldn’t have accomplished all I have without my LPGA T&CP credentials and the education they gave me. Now as a member of the LPGA T&CP Education Committee and Vice-President of the LPGA, I am getting to go through the process all over again and am I able to witness first-hand how our education programs are transforming the game and how it is taught.

What does it mean to be an LPGA member to you?

Sometimes I pinch myself because I can’t believe that I am a member of the LPGA T&CP. Being a part of the LPGA is one of my most important accomplishments of my life.  I didn’t come from a golf family or ever have any ties to the LPGA, so for me to work myself all the way up to VP of the T&CP was a lot of work, but I would do it all over again.

What is the best part about the membership for you?

I love being part of a prestigious organization that is known all over the world. I love being a part of an organization that is comprised of powerful women who want to make a difference in the lives of golfers and now young women with our Girls Golf Sites. Everyone knows the LPGA is comprised of the world’s best players, teachers, and coaches and now we are inspiring young girls to take up the game and helping them become leaders.

What advice would you give someone just starting the program or thinking about starting?

Write a diary and write down all the funny things that happen to you on the lesson tee and golf course. I have hundreds of interesting and funny stories, but have forgotten a lot of them because I didn’t write them down. Keep a diary and maybe you will write a book like Harvey Penick too.

What do you love most about the game of golf?:

I am sort of a pack rat and I love to shop, so golf is very conducive to a person that likes to shop and get free stuff like me. I own just about every new piece of equipment that has come out, I have a separate closet just for my golf clothes. I am always looking into the new training aid. I collect logo-ed towels and golf balls. I pretty much keep everything too.  As a joke, at my husband’s family golf outing, they gave one group a gift certificate to ‘Dan and Karen’s garage to pick out any golf equipment that they wanted.  So that kind of tells you how much golf stuff I have….

Special Thanks:

I have a lot of fellow LPGA members that I would like to thank for helping me in my career and supporting me all these years including-Deb Vangellow, Nancy Henderson, Kiernan Schindler, Oneda Castillo, Joanne Forman, Gwen Checho, Debbie Doniger, Carol Preisinger, Abby Welsh, the late Dede Owens, Sue Gintar, Christi Dorce, Cheryl Anderson, and Christina Ricci. Also anyone that I have played with in a LPGA national or section tournament that laughed and cried with me before, during, and after the round!


Member Spotlight: Jenn Holt


Jenn Holt, Class A LPGA since 2012. 

Independent Teacher at Murrieta Valley Golf Range (home of Rickie Fowler).

My average day: I have morning private lessons with varied adults and few hour lunch break. I then go back to teach private half hour lessons with kids after they get out of school. On Friday mornings I volunteer teaching golf to the adults who have developmental disabilities, which I really enjoy. On Friday afternoons I take a group of high school girls out on the course for 2 hours. Weekends are my busiest time with loyal students who have had the same time for a few years. I work 7 days a week but keep Monday mornings to myself.

My idol growing up was Bjorn Borg. I found him to be so strong and stoic. Every time I was in a golf tournament as a child and wasn’t happy I had a picture of Borg in my bag and would remember his stoicism and fashioned myself after him. No crying for me!

I’m obsessed with my new Run Keeper app that allows you to track how far you walk, run or ride a bike. You make your goals and it keeps track. I am on a walking team with my mom so even though we live far apart we have a team goal to walk 1,000 miles in 2018. It sure gets me out walking!

Who I wish I knew 10 years ago: My best friend Chris Vatcher. I met her 5 years ago at the LPGA Level 1 training in Florida. I would of really appreciated her friendship 10 years ago as I was a newly divorced and a struggling single mom with three kids. I enjoy talking to her often as we are both teaching professionals in Southern California.  We help each other out and talk about how to improve our lessons.

The last time I tried something new was when I went to the Blast Certification Training to learn about using Blast in my lessons. That’s new to me since I am not a techie. Blast is a great tool for golf!

The book that is been most influential to me is called Soul Survivor by Phillip Yancey. It opened my eyes, my mind and my heart at a time when I was very regimented in my thinking towards my faith. It pointed me into a new, more freeing direction in my life. However, when I gift books I really try to think of that person and what would appeal to them, so what book I gift is different each time.

I would like to be known and remembered as being a kind, patient and gentle person that really cares about each person she encounters. I really try hard each day when I teach to be in the present and figure out what each student needs individually that would make their day happier. I want to be there to listen to them.

What’s next for me: I will continue to teach golf, and if I’m really inspired and the stars align I would like to have a kids intensive golf training academy.

To learn more about Jenn and book a lesson, check out her website.



Women in Golf Wednesday!

wisdom wednesday


Jodi Wendt


Where you live:

Rock Hill, South Carolina


Where do you work & what do you do:

Winthrop University Women’s Golf Coach


How long have you been an LPGA member?

19 years


How was the process of becoming a member for you?

The process was very educational!  The LPGA does a great job teaching you to be a great teacher of the game of golf!


What does it mean to be an LPGA member to you?  

Being an LPGA member means belonging to a great women’s organization that has been professionally educated to help others with the game of golf!  I truly feel pride when I wear the LPGA logo!


What is the best part about the membership for you?

The best part of the membership for me is the education we receive as we get certified plus the continual education we get to stay certified. Also, I appreciate the faith my students have in me knowing I was professionally certified by the LPGA!


What advice would you give someone just starting the program or thinking about starting?  

You can never go wrong with the education you will be receiving from the LPGA!  It will make you a better instructor, coach, club professional, and person!  Also, you will be joining a group of amazing women who are making a big difference in the world of golf!


What do you love most about the game of golf?

What I love most about the game of golf is that this sport can be played by a whole family!  It gave me so many wonderful memories of family vacations spent on the golf course!


Words of Wisdom:

Being a member of the LPGA opened doors for me in my profession that would not have been opened without it!  I am very thankful for all those that came before me that made this organization such an outstanding opportunity for Women!

Women in Golf Wednesday!


Jennifer Cully


Where you live: 

Saint Petersburg, Florida


Where do you work & what do you do: 

Apollo Beach Golf Club …Independent contractor/Teaching Professional, 

LPGA T&CP …Global Education Team Member, Educator and PTE Evaluator 


How long have you been an LPGA member?

Since 1992


How was the process of becoming a member for you?

I thoroughly enjoyed the process of becoming a class A member in the LPGA. I went through the PGA education at the same time and quickly realized that I was drawn to the teaching education that the LPGA is known for.   I love to learn and thought going to education and seminars was fun. I had great mentors paving the way. I am thankful for the friends I have made though the LPGA too.  


What does being an LPGA Member mean to you?

I have been a fan of the LPGA since I was a child. To be a member of the LPGA makes me very proud. Doing what I love and sharing the game of golf with others drives me every day. It is awesome to see the game growing rapidly amongst women and girls and know the LPGA organization and I am an influence. I take my roles very seriously and feel honored to be able to be a caretaker of the game I love. 


What is the best part about the membership for you?

The LPGA sisterhood.  I enjoy playing in tournaments spending time with friends, learning with friends, sharing ideas, being mentored by wonderful role models and now mentoring others myself. It is the supportive people who all share the same mission that I enjoy the most.  We are here to help nurture each other and watch each other grow greatness! 


What advice would you give someone just starting the program or thinking about starting?

Set goals and write them down. Take your time, be patient and enjoy the process.  Read the manuals, use the resources, practice and do not be afraid to ask for help.  Teaching is an ongoing process of learning about your students and yourself and there is always more to learn. Seek people who do what you want to do. Spend time with them and ask questions. Be active in the association and it will give you more than you asked for in return. Be prepared to stand up for yourself in this business of golf. 


What do you love most about the game of golf?

Oh my list is long….Golf has been a part of my life as long as I can remember. The game runs in my family!  It is a game that brings people together. I love being in nature and relish in the stillness and the peacefulness I find on the course. I love the traditions and history of the game. I mostly love the never ending challenge that golf provides.  I never tire of seeing a beginner get hooked on the game when they hit the sweet spot the first time. I enjoy seeing great shots whether I hit them or someone else. For me, it is a satisfying game on so many levels and there is no other game like it. 


Anything else you would like to share:

I love to play golf and enjoy using my old hickory clubs circa 1925.  I welcome my LPGA friends to come play in the annual US Pro Hickory Tournament in Tampa, FL next winter. We want to grow the ladies division. Bag and clubs are provided with entry if needed. C’mon it is fun to play golf dress up and go back in history. Grab a friend & join me! 

Women in Golf Wednesday! – Gwen Checho

gwenName: Gwen Checho

Where you live?

Ormond Beach, FL

Where you work & what you do?

 I am the Education Manager at LPGA Headquarters. I oversee making sure all members starting the program have a great experience and experience success in the certification. I get to talk to a lot of LPGA members and share what we do as an organization with the golf industry.

How long have you been an LPGA member?

10 years

How was the process of becoming a member for you?

I was invited to membership with the LPGA by my boss. It was the best thing I ever did. I loved attending the education programs and meeting other women with similar passions for changing the world one student and swing at a time.  I had just finished my class A when I got offered the job to help run the certification program that changed my career path.

What does it mean to be an LPGA member to you?

It means I am a part of something bigger than what I can do on my own. The LPGA is a group of smart, strong, and powerful women who are determined to make a difference in their own unique way.

What is the best part about the membership for you?

People. It is amazing to see the many walks of life our membership comes from and the dreams they have to change themselves and share golf.

What advice would you give someone just starting the program or thinking about starting?

You will get out of the LPGA what you put in. soak up all the information you can but know it takes time to digest, understand and apply. Our LPGA Founders and the women who built our certification compiled many years of research and experience to create the best teacher certification in the world. It is the way to teach because it is focused on the most important thing – the students we teach/coach.

What do you love most about the game of golf?

I love how it can bring people together. I can play it with my 66-year-old dad or my 6 year old daughter.

LPGA Announces 2018 Pioneers, Pays Tribute to Their Trailblazing Spirit

Amy Alcott, Sandy LaBauve and Susie Maxwell Berning to be honored at Bank of Hope Founders Cup

Amy Alcott, Sandy LaBauve and Susie Maxwell Berning are being honored in March at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup as the LPGA’s ‘Pioneers’ of 2018, a tribute to their trailblazing spirit as well as their exemplary participation in the development and advancement of the LPGA Tour and women’s golf.

Each year, the Founders Cup returns to Phoenix to celebrate the LPGA’s past, present and future. The tournament at Wildfire Golf Club honors the 13 Founders of the LPGA, provides a stage for the best players of today from all over the world to showcase their talents and ‘plays it forward’ to the future of the game by raising money to benefit the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program.

The event also celebrates the ‘pioneering’ women who continued the efforts of the LPGA Founders to maintain the momentum and growth of the tour. With Alcott, LaBauve and Maxwell Berning being honored as Pioneers this week, please see below for some of their amazing accomplishments and contributions to the LPGA.


LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame member Amy Alcott turned professional in 1975 at the age of 18 and claimed her first major championship title at the 1979 Peter Jackson Classic (later renamed the du Maurier Classic). She went on to win four more majors – the 1980 U.S. Women’s Open and the Nabisco Dinah Shore (in 1983, 1988 and 1991). She celebrated her triumph at the 1988 Dinah Shore with a leap into Poppie’s Pond, establishing a tradition which is now followed by every winner of that championship.

Alcott’s most successful season came in 1980 when she won four times and clinched the Vare Trophy for the lowest scoring average. She ended her LPGA Tour career with 29 victories and started working in golf course design. She was part of the architectural team which designed the golf course for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.


A passionate LPGA Teaching Professional and mother of two daughters, Sandy LaBauve founded LPGA-USGA Girls Golf in Phoenix in 1989. She was first introduced to golf by her parents, Jack and Sherry Lumpkin, who taught her the game by infusing fun drills and games into her golf lessons as a child. LaBauve used these childhood experiences to create the LPGA*USGA Girls Golf program.

Beginning with just 10 programs, Girls Golf is now in more than 400 communities in the United States and expanding every day. Thanks to LaBauve’s vision, more than 500,000 girls have been introduced to golf since the program’s inception. LaBauve is a Class A member of the LPGA and the PGA, as well as an AWGA and EWGA member. She was inducted into the Arizona Golf Hall of Fame in 2010 and last year she was included in the LPGA Top 50 Best Teachers list presented by Women’s Golf Journal.


Susie Maxwell Berning turned professional in 1964 and joined the LPGA Tour that same year, a season that ended with her earning Rookie of the Year honors. She won her first LPGA Tour title at the 1965 Muskogee Civitan Open and her maiden major crown at the 1965 Women’s Western Open. In all, she triumphed 11 times on the LPGA Tour, with four of her victories coming at major championships. She was a three-time winner of the U.S. Women’s Open (1968, 1972 and 1973).

Maxwell Berning went on to become a well-respected teaching professional after joining the Nicklaus/Flick Golf School Division in January 1998. She was recognized during the LPGA’s 50th Anniversary in 2000 as one of the LPGA’s top-50 players and teachers.

Characteristics of LPGA Pioneers:

  1. One who ventures into unknown or unclaimed territory
  2. One who opens up new areas of thought, research, or development
  3. Of, relating to or characteristic of early settlers: the pioneer spirit
  4. Leading the way; trailblazing
  5. To initiate or participate in the development and advancement of the LPGA

Previous Honorees

2017 – Sandra Post, Hollis Stacy

2016 – Sandra Haynie, Shirley Engelhorn, Jan Stephenson

2015 – Donna Caponi, Judy Rankin, Sandra Palmer

2014 – Kathy Whitworth, Renee Powell

2013 – Carol Mann, JoAnne Carner

2012 – Mickey Wright, Betsy Rawls, Barbara Romack, Peggy Kirk Bell

About the LPGA

The LPGA is the world’s leading professional golf organization for women. Founded in 1950 and headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla., the association celebrates a diverse and storied membership with more than 2,300 members representing more than 30 countries. With a vision to inspire, empower, educate and entertain by showcasing the very best of women’s golf, LPGA Tour Professionals compete across the globe, while the Symetra Tour, the official development and qualifying tour of the LPGA, consistently produces a pipeline of talent ready for the world stage. Additionally, LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals directly impact the game through teaching, coaching and management.

The LPGA demonstrates its dedication to the development of the game through The LPGA Foundation. Since 1991, this charitable organization has been committed to empowering and supporting girls and women through developmental and humanitarian golf initiatives, such as LPGA*USGA Girls Golf.

Follow the LPGA on its television home, Golf Channel, and on the web via www.LPGA.com. Join the social conversation at www.facebook.com/lpga, www.twitter.com/lpga and www.youtube.com/lpgavideo, and on Instagram at @lpga_tour.

Media Contact
Mark Lamport-Stokes, Director of Public Relations, LPGA
mark.lamport-stokes@lpga.com, +1 386-274-6260

Women in Golf Wednesday!

Charlaine HirstName: Charlaine Hirst

Where do you live?

Pinehurst, NC

Where do you work & what do you do?

Independent Teaching Professional hosted by the Country Club of Whispering Pines since 2009.

How long have you been an LPGA member?

Joined in 2005

How was the process of becoming a member for you?

The process was easy.  A few calls to LPGA HQ and getting paperwork completed to begin the Apprentice stage of the journey.  I was assigned a mentor that was a point of contact throughout my process and that helped with answering the questions I had.  The NEP I instructors were fabulous and such great role models for a new member:  Vicki Phillips, Jane Frost, Kathy Gook, Karen Stellick, Debbie Crews and Deb Vangellow.

What does it mean to be an LPGA member to you?

Being an LPGA member is empowering.  To be surrounded by such an amazing group of strong women and learn from them is such an honor.  It is a strong organization that continues to strive to be better, grow and learn in their goal to empower all of us.

What is the best part about the membership for you?

I really enjoy the tournament opportunities every year.  It is great to be able to stay competitive.  The educational opportunities are always strong and I look forward to the Summit every other year.  Learning and education within the organization is so much fun.

What advice would you give someone just starting the program or thinking about starting?

You will love every minute of the journey.  You will be learning from the best and most unselfish group of women.  If you need anything there is always someone to talk to and point you in the right direction.  The experience is life changing and will be a great way to move forward in the career of golf.