A Tribute to Lois Lillyman
By Golf NSW and Truda Rail, Women’s President – Strathfield Golf Club
Golf NSW Honorary Member Lois Lillyman passed away on June 2015. Lois was an inspirational leader and a huge contributor to women’s golf. Lois became an Honorary Member through her years of meritorious service, a majority spent during her time with the NSW Ladies Golf Union (later renamed as Women’s Golf NSW).
Lois and her husband Doug (who passed away in 2013), were long term Strathfield residents. They raised their four children there, living out their days in Boden Avenue. She joined the local Strathfield Golf Club in August 1965. Lois quickly became a successful golfer with her name appearing on club honour boards spanning a period of twenty-six years.
For most golfers, being the Club Champion is just a dream. Lois achieved her dream in both 1978 and 1979. She was also a wonderful partner with victories in both a Mixed Foursomes Championship and ten Women’s Foursomes Championships with six different partners.
Lois became a great promoter of women’s golf. She had exceptional organisational skills and a very calm, steady nature that brought out the best in those players around her. She became an Associate’s Captain in 1974 for the designed three-year term.
Through her vibrant Captaincy, the Associate’s No. 3 Grade Team were encouraged to victory for the first time since 1948, a twenty-six year drought. Mrs Rae Lewis, who still plays golf at Strathfield, was a member of that successful team. She shared her fond memories of Lois, and described how Lois made them believe in themselves as a team.
Lois’ enthusiasm, reassurance and encouragement saw two other state-level competition wins, the LGU Bronze Medallion, a Team event, and the prestigious Metropolitan Golf Medal, a singles event. She was awarded a Life Membership at Strathfield Golf Club for her contribution to the Club and its members.
Lois went beyond her club to promote women’s golf and became heavily involved in the NSW Ladies Golf Union. After her term as Captain finished, she became a NSW Ladies Golf Union Council Member in 1977-1981, 1984-1987 and 1989. She served on numerous committees which included Junior Golf, Match, Scratch Score, Handicap (Chair in 1985) and Finance. She served as the NSWLGU Vice President for two terms (1981-83 and 1985-87). In 1989 Lois was elected NSWLGU Counsellor and became an Honorary Member that same year.
Recognising the many volunteer hours Lois dedicated to women’s golf, she was awarded an Australian Sports Medal in 2000, instituted by Her Majesty the Queen to commemorate Australian Sporting Achievement.
Lois contributed to the committee throughout her life bringing a great deal of golfing knowledge and experience to the community. Her reputation and influence within the club extended well beyond her playing years.
Lois Lillyman will be sorely missed. We thank her for her contribution to Women’s Golf at both Club and State Level. May you rest in peace.