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THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Editor and Director of Content. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter @GogBlogGuy. With Mike Munro at The Green Street Grille in Bensenville

The Illinois PGA has named Carol Rhoades as the 2017 IPGA PGA Professional of the Year.

Rhoades becomes the first female Professional of the Year in the IPGA Section.

Rhoades teaches at the Golf Channel Academy of Chicago.

“We are privileged to have such an outstanding group of PGA Professionals in the Illinois Section that are dedicated to growing the game for everyone from the junior player to the weekend player to the elite player,” said Carrie Williams, executive director of the Illinois PGA Section. “This year’s Special award winners exemplify all the PGA of America has to offer the experts in the business and game of golf.”

IPGA 2017 Section Award Winners in front of Medinah Country Club

In addition that evening, the 2017 Players of the Year were announced for the section.

Kemper Lakes head professional Jim Billiter was the player of year, edging out Adam Schumacher from the Indian Hill Club.

Jim Sobb the Director of Golf at the Ivanhoe Club, was the Senior Player of the Year.

Rhoades the Professional of the Year is also an instructor at the Cog Hill golf and Country Club in Lemont. Rhoades is the first woman to win the award that has been handed out since 1955.

“I am deeply honored that my fellow colleagues would want me to represent our section. I accept this award with a great sense of responsibility and want to continue to do everything I can to grow and promote the game,” said Rhoades. “making golf fun and helping those that I have taught try to realize the joy of the game and selling the game on the values that make it different is really important to me.”

Carol grew up in Pennsylvania and was introduced to the game by her father. After earning her masters degree from Slippery Rock University, Rhodes moved on to five different clubs before settling in at her current facilities.

She has been a golf coach at two universities, William and Mary in Virginia and then the University of Illinois in Chicago. She is a former LPGA Professional of the Year, and has already won three other IPGA Section Awards, including the Bill Strausbaugh Award in 2002, The Player Development Award in 2008 and the Horton Smith Award in 2010. She has been previously nominated for the section teacher of the year award.


Patrick Lynch-Cantigny Golf, Player Development Award                                                  Nick Cuca-Exmoor Country Club, Assistant Professional of the Year                                Louis Sauer-LS Golf, Teacher of the Year                                                                          Greg Barasel-Cantigny Golf Youth Player Development Award                                          Nick Papadakes-Onwentsia Club, Bill Strausbaugh Award                                                Todd Sones-Todd Sones Inpact Golf, Horton Smith Award                                                Dave Huber-Lake in the Woods Country Club, Bill Heald Career Achievement Award      Dave Schmaltz-Exmoor Country Club, Merchandiser of the Year Award-Private Club      Steve Grille-Randall Oaks GC, Merchandiser of the Year-Public Facility                            Reagan Davis-Eagle Ridge Resort and Spa, Merchandiser of the Year-Resort Facility.

On behalf of everyone at Golfers on Golf, we congratulate all of our IPGA section award winners. Well deserved.

Golfers on Golf, will have a recap of the Illinois Golf Hall of Fame Dinner this coming week.  Stay clicked in.

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About Rory Spears

Rory spent over 8 years growing up working at Rob Roy Golf Club in Prospect Hts.IL, then two years at Chevy Chase in Wheeling. He has covered golf in Chicago since 1986. Rory was one of the initial members of WSCR all-sports radio Chicago and covered golf there for 5 seasons, before moving on to work for ESPN/Sportsticker and ESPN Radio. In addition to hosting Golfers on Golf Radio on WNDZ Am 750 Chicago, he writes for both Chicagoland Golf and the Chicago District (CDGA) Magazine. Rory has played over 460 courses in 37 states, and rates golf courses. He does golf course management and communications consulting, in the golf industry.