PGA of Belgium Member and Chief Executive, Bernard De Bruyckere, has been awarded the CPG 5-Star Professional Award in recognition of his 30+ years in the sport and his hugely significant role in the development of the PGA of Belgium and its Members.
The 5-Star Professional Award looks to recognise the best in the business – individuals who exhibit the key characteristics of what being a PGA Professional represents and have shown excellence across the many areas of expertise and activity that PGA Members are involved in.
De Bruyckere, who celebrated 30 years of service to the PGA of Belgium in early December, has demonstrated this perfectly throughout his career in areas such as coaching, administration, refereeing, education and development, to name but a few.
“It is a huge moment,” said De Bruyckere who received the award at the CPG Annual Awards Supported by Rolex, held at Penina Hotel & Golf Resort. “To be nominated by your own PGA and Board and get recognition from the CPG, who now represent 43 countries worldwide, is amazing – I am very proud.
“It has been an adventure. When I started there were no computers, smartphones…not even the Euro! So to see the evolution of the game and the technology that surrounds it has been an incredible experience. Being a PGA Professional is a true challenge as you are dealing with so many different people and you have to find many solutions to a range of complex problems.”
De Bruyckere began working as a golf instructor during his military service and comes from a long line of golfers, with his Grandfather a greenkeeper at Royal Zoute Golf Club and his Father an Assistant Professional in their own rights. At the age of just 24, he became the youngest golf manager in Belgium at that time.
His move to the administrative side of the sport occurred when he became treasurer for the PGA of Belgium, going on to assume the General Secretary position in 1994, where he has been ever since. As the first PGA of Belgium Professional to pass The R&A rules school, he has also officiated many national tournaments and CPG [formerly PGAs of Europe] events, such as the PGA Professional Championship of Europe, Fourball Championship and Beko Classic Pro-Am.
Bernard continues to have a significant impact on the education of PGA of Belgium Professionals and those further afield through his vision for, and development of, the association’s training and education programme.
CPG Chairman, Frank Kirsten, commented: “It is a great pleasure to have been able to award this honour to my great friend, Bernard. We have known each other for many years and I cannot think of anyone more fitting to receive this recognition, considering the role he has played in developing PGA of Belgium members and PGA Professionals further afield too.”