The Pacific Northwest Section PGA of America named their 2015 Special Award Winners today. The top Pacific Northwest PGA professionals in 15 categories were recognized by their peers for outstanding performance during 2015. The winners listed below represent the very best of the Pacific Northwest Section’s 1,100 PGA Professionals in Washington, Oregon, Northern Idaho, Western Montana and Alaska.

Bryan TunstillBryan Tunstill, PGA, received the Section’s highest honor as Golf Professional of the Year for 2015. Tunstill has developed very aspect of his profession to the fullest degree, including golf shop operations, teaching, playing, tournament administration, rules of golf, and merchandising.

greg-manleyGreg Manley, PGA Head Professional at Meridian Valley CC in Kent, WA, was awarded the Bill Strausbaugh Award. He has proven to be a true mentor to his fellow PGA Professionals through 13 years of service to the Western Washington Chapter, 7 Years to the Section, and extensive community service.

jason-aicheleJason Aichele, PGA, Teaching Professional at Meadow Springs Country Club in Richland, Washington, was named the 2015 Teacher of the Year. Aichele has brought to fruition a fantastic plan for a year-long coaching program and 3,200 square foot indoor practice facility.

andy-mackimmieAndy Mackimmie, PGA, was honored with the Horton Smith Award. Mackimmie, who has been the Section’s Chairman of Education for the past five years, has shown his commitment to furthering education in the Section by coordinating the popular Sweet Sixteen Education Seminars.

justin-robertsJustin Roberts, PGA was named Assistant Golf Professional of the Year. He stepped up in a big way with daily operations, as well as hosting major Section and Montana State amateur events at Canyon River GC. He also started up a junior golf program, and raised funds for it by holding a tournament.

john-grotheJohn Grothe, PGA Head Professional at the OGA Golf Club, received the Player Development Award. Grothe was recognized for making exemplary contributions in the area of player development. He has been a leader in programs to grow the game, at little or no cost to participants.

sara-griffinSara Griffin, PGA, received the Youth Player Development Award for her extensive and innovative junior golf programs at Tacoma C&GC, as well as developing her own Golf in Schools program.

chris-runyan-2014Chris Runyan, PGA, of Prairie Falls GC, received the Patriot Award. Runyan spearheads a charity golf tournament that raises over $50,000 for charities supporting our veterans and he works with injured local veterans to bring golf back into their life.

matt-brown-2014-smallMatt Brown, PGA, was named the 2015 Merchandiser of the Year for Public facilities. Brown was recognized for innovative merchandising including online sales, high-tech custom club fitting, and managing a custom club brand that he launched in 2014.

louis-bennettLouis Bennett, PGA Head Professional at Tetherow GC in Bend, OR was named the 2015 Merchandiser of the Year for Resort facilities. Bennett was recognized for his partnerships with golf apparel companies and local breweries for creative and successful promotions.

scott-leritzScott Leritz, PGA Head Professional at Royal Oaks CC in Vancouver, WA, received the 2015 Merchandiser of the Year award for Private facilities. Leritz is recognized for the great attention to detail that he puts into merchandising and for personally reaching out to each customer.

kathy-brownKathleen Brown, PGA of Esmeralda GC in Spokane, WA, was honored with the Perry Williams Award. In addition to serving the PNW PGA Rules Committee since 2013, she was the PGA Rules Official on both the 2015 Rosauers Open Invitational and the 2015 PNW PGA Professional Championship.

derek-barronDerek Barron of Tacoma Golf Center in Tacoma, WA, was recognized as both the Player of the Year and Assistant Player of the Year. In addition to fantastic play throughout 2015, he won the 2015 Northwest Open Invitational and tied for 7th in the National Car Rental PGA Assistant Championship at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

rob-gibbonsRob Gibbons, PGA of Arrowhead GC in Molalla, OR was named the Senior Player of the Year. Besides placing well in all of the Section’s senior events in 2015, he qualified for and played in the 2015 Senior PGA Professional National Championship at Bayonet & Black Horse in Seaside, CA.

These fourteen outstanding PGA Professionals will be honored at the Pacific Northwest Section Special Awards Ceremony, March 20 at Tualatin Country Club in Tualatin, OR.

Contact Jeff Ellison with questions at 360-3456-6496.