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Year in Review

December 15th, 2009

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- A storybook finale at the Senior PGA Championship, followed by a historic PGA Championship and tributes to pioneers of diversity in golf, The PGA of America's 2009 Year in Review was a season for the ages. Those events and more will be part of an hour-long Golf Channel special in HD, beginning Thursday, Dec. 10, from 10:30 to 11:30 p.m. ET.

Hosted by Golf Channel business reporter-analyst Adam Barr at the PGA Historical Center in Port St. Lucie, Fla., The PGA of America's Year in Review will have additional airings Friday, Dec. 11, from 2:00 to 3:00 a.m., and Tuesday, Dec. 15, from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. ET. Golf Channel has a potential reach of 85 million U.S. households.

The program reflects upon a championship year in which Michael Allen made the Senior PGA Championship his first senior golf triumph; and when Korea's Y.E. Yang chased down Tiger Woods on a Sunday in the PGA Championship to become the first male Korean player to win one of golf's four major championships.

It also was a landmark year for the PGA in recognizing pioneers -- beginning in August at the PGA Championship where PGA Life Member William Powell of East Canton, Ohio, received the PGA Distinguished Service Award. In 1946, Powell overcame racial barriers to become the only African American to build, own and operate a golf course in the U.S., and today, at 93, continues to promote diversity in the game.

In November, the PGA bestowed posthumous membership upon three African American playing pioneers -- John Shippen, Ted Rhodes and Bill Spiller -- and gave PGA Honorary Membership upon Joe Louis Barrow, better known as boxing legend Joe Louis, who became an advocate for diversity in golf long after his ring career had ended.

PGA of America President Jim Remy of Ludlow, Vt., is a featured guest and reviews the efforts of PGA Professionals in supporting Play Golf America/Get Golf Ready initiatives and the World PGA Alliance and the impact of golf returning to the Olympic Games in 2016.

The PGA's Year in Review also features:

Don Vickery of Savannah, Ga., who overcame major obstacles to become the first double amputee to earn PGA membership and who has since developed into a popular PGA teaching professional.

The United States, behind a record-breaking Sunday singles effort in Scotland, retains the PGA Cup over Great Britain & Ireland.

The third annual Patriot Golf Day, supported by PGA Professionals and amateurs nationwide, has raised more than $5 million since its origin in 2007. This year, led by South Florida PGA Executive Director and runner, Geoff Lofstead, 16 PGA Professionals were recruited to participate in the Marine Corps Marathon to help raise additional funds to support scholarships for military families. The PGA Professional contingent included Patriot Golf Day founder Maj. Dan Rooney of Broken Arrow, Okla.

Reigning U.S. Open Champion Lucas Glover made the most of his debut in the PGA Grand Slam of Golf by posting a five-stroke victory in Bermuda.

University of Illinois Coach Mike Small staged a final-round comeback in June in New Mexico to win a second PGA Professional National Championship.

A review of the 2009 PGA of America national award winners:

- PGA Golf Professional of the Year -- Jack Barber, Indianapolis, Ind.

- PGA Teacher of the Year -- Mike Bender, Lake Mary, Fla.

- Horton Smith Award -- Derek Hardy, San Clemente, Calif.

- Bill Strausbaugh Award -- Dennis Satyshur, Timonium, Md.

- PGA Junior Golf Leader -- Vikki Vanderpool, Murfreesboro, Tenn.

- PGA First Lady of Golf -- Donna Caponi-Byrnes, Orlando, Fla.

- PGA Patriot Award -- Andy Weissinger, Fort Eustis, Va.

- PGA Merchandisers of the Year -- (Private Facilities) Brian Morrison, Flossmoor, Ill. (Private Facilities); Nevin Phillips, St. Thomas, Virgin Islands (Public Facilities); Caroline Basarab-Dennison, Hilton Head Island, Ga. (Resort Facilities).

- President's Plaque -- Kyle Heyen, Evergreen, Colo.

- Herb Graffis Award -- Midwest PGA Section

See more of PGA's Year in Review here.