Golf course architecture leader Dr. Michael Hurdzan, ASGCA will accept the Donald Ross Award from the American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) during its Annual Meeting on 30th April in Atlanta. He joins other ASGCA past presidents Robert Trent Jones, Geoffrey Cornish, Pete Dye and members Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer as recipients of the organization’s highest honor.
President Greg Muirhead, ASGCA will present the award during the Donald Ross Award Banquet at the Westin Buckhead. The award is given annually to a person who has made significant contributions to the game of golf and golf course architecture.
“Mike Hurdzan is one of the most respected names in the golf industry,” notes Muirhead. “His tireless promotion of what’s good and important about golf course architecture – environmental stewardship, designing facilities that make the game accessible to more players – makes him the perfect recipient for the Ross Award. All along the way he has given much to ASGCA. No one deserves this award more.”
Dr. Hurdzan’s golf course experience can be traced back to childhood. “Mike Hurdzan started out helping on my golf course, became a caddy and finally a greenkeeper,” noted ASGCA past president Jack Kidwell in a letter recommending Hurdzan as an ASGCA Associate Member 34 years ago.
Hurdzan continued to work for Kidwell as a summer golf superintendent as he earned his bachelor of science from Ohio State University. Dr. Hurdzan then joined Kidwell as a full-time associate while earning his masters in turfgrass management and Ph.D. in environmental plant physiology from the University of Vermont.
He has been an ASGCA member since 1974, served as president in 1984-1985, and has and continues to serve on various committees within the organization. A principal of Hurdzan/Fry Golf Course Design, Dr. Hurdzan has been a pioneering and recognized leader on golf and environmental issues, including service as past chairman of the Environmental Institute for Golf. He has written six books, including his textbook “Golf Course Architecture: Design, Construction and Renovation,” which as been translated into German, Korean and Chinese. He is also author of the ASGCA publication “Building a Practical Golf Facility,” now in its second printing.
“To be recognized by your peers and competitors whom you professionally respect and personally enjoy is the highest honor one can receive,” says Hurdzan. “I know how important the Donald Ross Award is, and the legendary stature of previous winners and what they have contributed to the game of golf, so I am sincerely humbled to receive it.”
Hurdzan will be the 32nd winner of the Donald Ross Award. ASGCA founder and Past President Robert Trent Jones was the first honoree in 1976.