Suzy Whaley made history Friday, as she was elected as the PGA of America’s president at the association’s annual meeting in Indian Wells, Calif.
She becomes the PGA’s 41st president but also its first female one.
The historic achievement is well deserved for Whaley. The 51-year-old played on the LPGA in the early 1990s but soon moved to teaching the game – enjoying a five-year run at Jim Flick Golf Schools before becoming head pro at Blue Fox Run in Avon, Conn., in 2002. She won the 2002 Connecticut PGA Championship, earning her an exemption into the following year’s Greater Hartford Open. She would miss the cut there, but Whaley had become the first woman to qualify for a PGA Tour event since Babe Zaharias in 1945.
Whaley joined the PGA of America in 2001 and was first elected to a two-year term as secretary. She then spent the past two years as vice president before being elected to a two-year term as president Friday.
Whaley is also currently the director of golf at Suzy Whaley Golf in Cromwell, Conn., and the director of instruction at the Country Club of Mirasol in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
“I may be the first woman to serve as president, but first, I’m a PGA Professional, and I am incredibly excited by the opportunities that lie ahead,” Whaley said in a release. “I look forward to helping advance the careers of our members, by highlighting the profound impact PGA Professionals have as coaches, in operations and sales, and as executives. We’re committed to exploring innovative new approaches to coaching that deliver the experience today’s consumer is seeking.”