Date: July 03, 2014

Tony Collier Wins PGA Teacher of the year

 The Victorian Golf Industry came together on Saturday evening to recognise the outstanding achievements and contributions of individuals and clubs to the sport in 2013. Representatives from Golf Victoria, the PGA of Australia and Golf Management Victoria gathered at the Southern Golf Club to witness the announcement of a number of awards including the induction of Kel Llewellyn into the Victorian Golf Industry Hall of Fame. 

Guests were treated on the night with special interviews from Australian Cricket great Ricky Ponting and the 2014 Oates Vic Open winner and 2013 OneAsia Order of Merit winner Matt Griffin. Also in attendance was The Minister for Sport and Recreation, The Hon. Damian Drum MLC and The Leader of the Opposition, The Hon. Daniel Andrews. 

Brian Thorburn, Chief Executive Officer of the PGA of Australia opened the evening highlighting outstanding performances of the golf industry in 2013 and that the industry continues to work together in order to harness all opportunities. 
“2013 was a significant year in Australian golf and tonight we take the opportunity to celebrate the highest achievers in Victoria and recognise those that influenced the game to where we have it today,” Thorburn said. “Over the last 12 months the industry has continued to work collaboratively sharing ideas and successes and look forward to continuing this in the years to come.” 

The Victorian Teaching Professional of the Year was awarded to PGA Professional Tony Collier for his dedication to junior development in the western region of Victoria. Collier is currently one of three Golf Victoria Regional Development Officers. Throughout 2013 it was estimated Collier coached over 9,000 juniors, conducted over 500 junior clinics and coordinated over 20 school tournaments totalling 1,500 participants.

With volunteers being an integral part of the sport, three volunteers were recognised for their exceptional contributions through the Volunteer of the Year awards. Ken Pattison (Cheltenham G.C) was awarded for the Melbourne Metropolitan Area – Individual Male, Don Read (Lakeside G.C) was awarded the Country Victoria/Victorian Golf League – Individual Male and Dawn Macdonald (Barwon Heads G.C) was awarded the Country Victoria/Victorian Golf League – Individual Female.

Highlighting the bright future of the game in Victoria was Su-Hyun Oh who won the Leading Female Amateur for the second consecutive year which included a runner-up finish in the 2013 Volvik RACV Ladies Masters Open.

Todd Sinnott was announced as the Leading Male Amateur of the Year which included a second place in the 2013 Victorian Amateur Championship.

Simon Brookhouse, Chief Executive Officer of Golf Victoria congratulated all the award winners and commended the Victorian golf bodies for their continued support and enthusiasm for the awards. 

“The industry awards night is a fantastic opportunity for the major bodies of golf in our state to come together to both celebrate and highlight the achievements of some of the great people and clubs we have in Victorian golf. It’s a real collaborative effort to put on such a night between GV, the PGA of Australia and GMV. 

“My congratulations go out to all the award winners including Kel Llewellyn for his induction into the Hall of Fame. I’d also like to pay special mention to our three volunteer winners and Golf Victoria’s Regional Development Officer, Tony Collier for being named the Victorian Teaching Professional of the Year. Tony is a 
wonderful asset to our organisation and is really driving the growth of the game regionally in Victoria,” said Brookhouse.  

The evening also celebrated PGA Professional Alan Patterson who was honoured to be awarded the Bruce Green Victorian Club Professional of the Year title for his work at the Patterson River Golf Club. Patterson has worked together with the club to grow membership and increase junior and female participation. 

Also recognising the playing prowess of those in the Victorian golf community, Tour Professional Euan Walters was presented with the 2012/2013 Victorian Order of Merit trophy. 

The evening also saw the induction of 15 Trainee graduates as Full Members of the PGA of Australia; however it was Jack Wilson who took the top honours as the Victorian and National Trainee of the Year. 

Wilson, who completed his Traineeship at Kingswood Golf Club, performed outstandingly across all areas of the program which included winning the Southern PGA Trainee Championship. However Wilson’s 2013 was highlighted by becoming the first PGA Trainee to win a PGA Tour of Australasia tournament with his victory at the WA Goldfields PGA Championship. 

He went on to capture the attention of the golf industry with a third place finish at the Australian PGA Championship behind Masters Champion Adam Scott and American young gun Rickie Fowler. 

The full list of Victorian Golf Industry Award winners on the night included:
·         Hall of Fame – Kel Llewellyn
·         Victorian Teaching Professional of the Year – Tony Collier 
·         Bruce Green Victorian Club Professional – Alan Patterson
·         PGA Trainee Pro-Am of the Year – Portarlington Golf Club
·         2013/2014 PGA Pro-Am of the Year with an Open prize purse – Penfold Motors Box Hill Pro-Am
·         2013/2014 PGA Pro-Am of the Year with a prize purse of $10,000 – $20,000 – getwinesdirect Heidelberg Pro-Am
·         2013/2014 PGA Victorian Regional Pro-Am of the Year – Latrobe City WIN Network Bank of Melbourne Pro-Am (Traralgon Golf Club)