Dozens of nominations from across the golf industry have been trimmed to three nominees in each category in the 23rd Annual ING Industry Honors awards program. Called by some the “Academy Awards of the golf industry,” the ING Industry Honors program is conducted by the non-profit International Network Of Golf to recognize outstanding achievement in the golf business.
Winners in a dozen categories are decided by a vote of the ING membership and announced at the Industry Honors Presentation Press Conference January 28, 2015, at 12:30 p.m. at the PGA Merchandise Show in ClubING, Room 309-A/B.
The International Network Of Golf is a non-profit, media-based networking organization whose mission is to enhance and promote communication and education in golf. Membership is open to anyone in the golf industry, related industries and media. ING is where media and the golf industry connect.
Sub-committees in each category reviewed nominations, and by private vote trimmed the entries to the top three in each category. All nominees will be recognized at the presentation.
ING exists to bring golf media together with representatives from all walks of the golf industry to discuss issues, exchange information and improve communication. The group conducts the 26th Anniversary ING Spring Conference May 22-26 at the Zermatt Resort in spectacular Heber Valley, Utah. Educational seminars, product testing, the One-On-One Appointment Show, golf tournaments and networking opportunities highlight schedule.
The next gathering for ING is at the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando Jan. 27-29. ClubING (Room 309-A/B) will be open all day for members and their guests, with morning coffee, Happy Hour cocktail parties with celebrity guests, presentations and prizes.
For more information regarding ING, call 407-328-0500 or visit www.inggof.com.
2015 ING Industry Honors Final Ballot
Mike Davis, Executive Director, USGA – In 2011, Mike Davis became the seventh executive director in the USGA’s 121-year history. Davis leads the 300-person full-time staff in its mission to conduct championships of excellence, govern the worldwide game, advance the long-term health of golf facilities, and support golfer engagement programs. With the USGA’s senior leadership team, Davis continues to champion the global reach of golf through the conduct of new championships such as the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championships, foster a deeper collaboration with industry partners, support research and technology development for pace-of-play and resource management solutions, and promote an accessible and inclusive game. He also serves as a board member of the International Golf Federation, World Golf Foundation, World Golf Hall of Fame and the Official World Golf Rankings.
Michael Hughes, Former Chief Executive Officer, NGCOA – Michael Hughes recently resigned after 25 years as Chief Executive Officer of the National Golf Course Owners Association. He is credited with helping elevate the stature of the NGCOA and golf course owners throughout the industry. Under his guidance, the NGCOA increased its membership from 250 to more than 6,500 worldwide. Hughes’ contributions to the association and industry are far-reaching. In collaboration with Steve Mona, former CEO of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, he led the formation of the Golf Industry Show, the second-largest and fastest-growing trade show in the golf industry. Hughes served as Chairman of the Executive Committee of Golf 20/20, on the Board of Governors of the National Golf Foundation and on the Advisory Board of the World Golf Hall of Fame. He was the 2015 Chairman of the We Are Golf Coalition.
Ken Morton Sr. PGA Professional – As the most-awarded golf professional in the history of the PGA, Director of Golf at Haggin Oaks Golf Complex Ken Morton, Sr.’s impact in the game of golf cannot be overstated. He has won five national PGA awards including the prestigious PGA Golf Professional of the Year award and been inducted into the PGA of America Hall of Fame and California Golf Hall of Fame. He also founded SAY Golf in 1983, and it would become the model by which The First Tee was designed. With nearly 60 years at the helm of Haggin Oaks, his legacy extends a far reach across the game of golf and now even further after he started the Morton Golf Foundation in 2008, a 501 3c non-profit that raises nearly $200,000 annually for youth and disabled golf development in the Greater Sacramento region.
Southern California G.A./Golf Pulp Media
Dr. Bob Winters, mental conditioning coach, specializes in sports and personal performance training. He has extensive training in sports psychology, motor and visual learning, sports vision, sports medicine, and educational psychology. For more than 30 years, Dr. Bob has served as a college coach and has consulted with over 25 different university sports teams. He has helped many of the top junior and collegiate players recognize the value of mental and emotional skills training in golf that gives them the winning edge.
Kelli Corlett, Junior & Disabled Golf Program Director at Haggin Oaks, oversees many of the nation’s largest junior and disabled golf programs. Some of those are Saving Strokes program for recovering stroke victims; The First Tee of Greater Sacramento and the 18,000 kids it touches; The California Eagles Special Olympics golf program; Latino Junior Golf Association; Tots on the Tee; a Wounded Warriors golf program; Swing Club for the Blind, Boys & Girls Club program and Angels for Hearts (for children with pulmonary disorders).
Kay McMahon, Golf 8.5 – The industry talks about growing the game and has yet to address the aspect of teaching. Golf 8.5, developed by LPGA Hall of Famer Kay McMahon, is a highly successful approach to learning the swing quickly. Golf 8.5 is simple. . . 4 things to do before the swing and only 4.5 things in-swing. Traditional teaching leads to too many thoughts. Golf 8.5 disrupts tradition. The feedback from all students is: “It’s so simple!”
Print Advertising – Products & Services
Callaway – “Leave No Yard Behind”
SuperStroke – “Quiet Your Hands. Hear The Roar”
Under Armour – “The Scary Thing Is…He’s Just Getting Started.”
Print Advertising – Travel & Real Estate
Arnold Palmer’s Bay Hill Club – “You’ll never look back and say – I wish I had played less golf.”
Scottsdale – “Scottsdale Is Transformative,” with Brandle Chamblee
St. George, Utah – “#ThereIsAPlace”
Product Ingenuity – Emerging Companies
DST Compressor Club – With a scientifically curved shaft and amended sole angle, the DST Compressor club helps players locate, train and perfect the Optimal Impact Position where the hands lead and control the clubface to compress the ball. The club also teaches golfers how to swing on plane in order to achieve better control, consistency and accuracy with each swing. Offered in wedge and 8-iron models, the club has been adopted by over 300 Tour professionals since January 2015.
Knuth Golf’s High Heat Driver was named on more media “top products” lists than any other driver at the PGA Show. Gary Van Sickle called High Heat with its 25% deeper and 18% lower CG, and 24% higher MOI compared to major brands, “the most significant technological innovation from the show . . . and a game changer for amateur golfers.” Based on Golf Lab’s tests, High Heat is longer, more accurate and forgiving than major brands.
The Swingclick is a simple, portable device that develops a golfer’s tempo, rhythm, timing and consistency. The training device straps easily to your forearm and alerts you with three clicks: at the top of the backswing, at impact and upon completion of the follow-through, giving you a frame of reference for the ideal rhythm of a great golf swing. Swingclick allows you to practice with every club on the range or on the course.
Product Ingenuity – Market Leaders
Cobra Golf KING LTD Driver – Fueled by research in space, the KING LTD features a revolutionary SpacePort design that allowed the brand’s R&D team to strategically position the Center of Gravity (CG) and make COBRA Golf’s key internal speed and stability technologies visible for the first time. “The KING LTD is the only driver to ever reach below ZERO CG – by combining the SpacePort with new materials, the KING LTD reaches optimal performance, never been done before by any other driver to date,” said Tom Olsavsky, VP of R&D for COBRA Golf.
PING G30 Driver – Turbulators on the crown of the 460cc Ti 8-1-1 head reduce aerodynamic drag, leading to faster clubhead speed and ball velocity for long, accurate drives. Turbulators also assist with aim and alignment. The higher strength/weight ratio of the T9S face material allows for a thinner, hotter face and saves 4 grams of weight. The weight savings are allocated to help position the CG lower and farther back than any PING driver to date, ensuring high launch and optimized spin with a high MOI. Also available in SF Tec (Straight Flight) and LS Tec (Low spin) versions.
TaylorMade Golf M1 Driver – The M1 driver has a multi-material construction, highlighted by a proprietary 7-layer Carbon Composite Crown. The crown is precision-formed and built ultra-thin, ultra-lite and high strength to maximize weight savings. This savings was repositioned to build a weight-loaded sole, moving overall clubhead weight lower and center for a more efficient power transfer. M1 features the revolutionary T-Track System that consists of both a front and back track with 25 grams of adjustable weight, providing distance without compromising forgiveness. The T-Track System gives golfers the ability to personalize their M1 to their exact specifications.
The Legends Championship – French Lick Resort – French Lick, Indiana
The French Lick Resort hosted The Legends Championship presented by Old National Bank at The Pete Dye Course. During championship week, PR efforts included shooting over 30 hours of video, editing and distributing 15 turn-key news pieces, conducting 32 interviews of players and supporters of the Championship, and hosting 13 hours of live radio. French Lick reached 334 national and international media outlets that resulted in 826,6453,658 impressions for a total media value of $769,572.00.
Troon Golf’s Breast Cancer Awareness Program
Troon Golf partnered with Callaway Golf to help raise awareness of breast cancer and the importance of early detection during National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. A special pink and white version of Callaway’s Chrome Soft golf ball was available at select Troon golf shops across the country. Callaway and Troon made a one-time donation to cancer research through the National Breast Cancer Foundation. In addition, Troon facilities flew a pink flag on every 18th green.
Volvik DS-77 Golf Ball Hole-In-One Challenge
Volvik GOLF introduced its new two-piece D-77 golf ball with this unique, nationwide hole-in-one contest. The company paid $500 to each verifiable hole-in-one scored by golfers using the D-77. A total of 23 holes-in-one were reported from various regions of the country. Volvik credits the challenge with opening over 200 new distribution points across the country for the DS-77 golf ball, and to hundreds of golfers switching to the Volvik brand.
Gary Player Invitational series is one of the biggest and most global charitable initiatives in golf with events in Asia, Europe, the United States, the Middle East and Africa. At the 2014 tournament in South Africa, the fundraising drive from a glamorous gala dinner auction raised more than $300,000. And since 1983, The Player Foundation has raised more than $60 million for charity worldwide.
Haggin Oaks Golf & Guitars – For the 8th consecutive year Haggin Oaks Golf Club conducted a two-day country music festival (held on-course) and pro-am golf tournament featuring more than 30 of country music’s brightest stars and songwriters- raising more than $100,000 annually to help fund 20+ college scholarships, Wounded Warriors golf program, Special Olympics golf programs and multiple other 501 3c non-profit golf programs in the Greater Sacramento area. The program has raised well over half a million dollars since its inception.
The Legends Championship at French Lick Resort – French Lick Resort hosted the Legends Championship for the third time in late August. Many of the best players in LPGA Tour history competed on the renowned Pete Dye Course, and the focus of the week was the main beneficiary of the event, the Riley’s Hospital for Children in Indiana. Via on-site participation by many of the children who have benefitted from the work done at Riley’s, a video promotion by French Lick, and the pro-am held prior to the tournament, the event raised $150,000 in donations to the Riley Children’s Foundation.
TV Commercial – Individual
Bridgestone Golf eSeries – “Drone Fire”
HSBC – “It’s Anyone’s Game”
TaylorMade Aeroburner – “Made Of Speed”
TV Commercial – Series
Geico – Featuring the Cave Man
Hyundai – Featuring David Feherty
Skechers – Featuring Matt Kuchar
French Lick Resort – The Legends Golf Championship
PGA Village /GMS