Ridley Elected as USGA President

By Usga News ServicesFebruary 8, 2004, 5:00 pm
FAR HILLS, N.J. -- Fred S. Ridley of Tampa, Fla., has been elected to serve a one-year term as president of the United States Golf Association. The election of officers and the full 15-member USGA Executive Committee took place on Saturday, at the USGAs Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla. Ridley will lead the professional staff and nearly 1,400 volunteers who serve on more than 30 committees.
 
An attorney, Ridley, 51, is a partner in the Tampa office of Foley & Lardner, an international law firm of more than 900 lawyers. Ridley is the second Foley & Lardner partner to serve as USGA president, following the late Lynford Lardner, who held that position in 1972-73. Ridley is a 1974 graduate of the University of Florida, where he was a three-time letterman for the Florida golf team, and a 1977 graduate of the Stetson University College of Law.
 
He began his professional career as assistant to the general counsel for International Management Group (IMG) in Cleveland, Ohio, from 1977 to 1980, before moving back to his native Florida to begin practicing law.
 
Ridley has had a distinguished career in amateur golf. He has competed in 15 USGA championships, including 10 U.S. Amateurs. He won the 1975 U.S. Amateur and earned a selection to the 1976 USA World Amateur team and the 1977 USA Walker Cup team. He was also named captain of the USA Walker Cup team in 1987 and 1989.
 
Interestingly, Ridley is the last Amateur champion to never have become a professional golfer. He has played in three Masters Tournaments and a U.S. Open, where he was paired with Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson. He has a career-low round of 63.
 
Ridley also served as chairman of the Championship Committee, the group responsible for the conduct of all USGA competitions, for the past four years and has chaired the Amateur Status and Conduct and the International Team Selection Committees.
 
He and his wife, Betsy, have three children: Maggie, Libby and Sydney.
 
The other elected officers of the Executive Committee are: Walter W. Driver Jr. of Atlanta, Ga., and Paul D. Caruso Jr., of Helena, Mont., as vice presidents; James E. Reinhart of Mequon, Wis., as secretary and Emily R. (Missy) Crisp of Mill Neck, N.Y., as treasurer
 
Eight others were re-elected for the Executive Committee, while three individuals have been elected for a first term.
 
Returning members include: Craig Ammerman of Cherry Hill, N.J.; Dr. Lewis H. Blakey of Alexandria, Va.; James T. Bunch of Denver, Colo.; Mary Bea Porter-King of Kapaa, Hawaii; Cameron Jay Rains of San Diego, Calif.; Bruce C. Richards of Bellevue, Wash.; and James F. Vernon of Pasadena, Calif..
 
In addition, Fredric C. Nelson of San Francisco, Calif., has been re-elected to serve as general counsel to the Committee.
 
The three new members of the Committee are Irving Fish of Woodland, Minn., James Hyler Jr. of Raleigh, N.C., and Loren Singletary of Houston, Texas.
 
Retiring from the Committee are immediate past president Reed Mackenzie of Chaska, Minn.; Eric Gleacher of New York, N.Y.; and John W. Vardaman of Washington, D.C. Mackenzie was been a member of the Committee since 1992. Gleacher was been a member of the Committee for the past seven years. Vardaman was with the Committee for five years, the first four as its general counsel.
 
Fish, 55, is a founding partner of Fallon Worldwide, an international advertising agency with offices in seven major cities on four continents. A 1971 graduate of Hamline University, Fish remains a senior advisor to Fallon after recently retiring as its chief operating officer.
 
He began his association with the USGA as a volunteer for the 1983 U.S. Senior Open at Hazeltine (Minn.) National Golf Club. He became more involved during the 1991 U.S. Open at Hazeltine.
 
He and his wife, Katie, have two children: Patrick and Charlie.
 
Hyler, 55, serves as vice chairman and chief operating officer of First Citizens BancShares, Inc., and First Citizens Bank, a position he has held since 1993. A 1970 graduate of Virginia Tech, Hyler has been with First Citizens since 1980, first as chief financial officer for eight years and secondly as president for five years.
 
He was chairman of the Presidents Council for the 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort and Country Club, a position he also holds for the upcoming 2005 Open at Pinehurst.
 
He lives in Raleigh with his wife, Natalie, and is the father of two children: Brad and Lori.
 
Singletary, 55, is vice president of corporate global accounts for National Oilwell. A 1971 graduate of the University of Texas, Singletary started to build a career in the oil business while spending six years in the U.S. Marines Reserves (1970-76). He was president and one of three partners who purchased LSI Specialty Electrical Products, an oil and gas service company, in 1998. LSI, in turn, was purchased in 2003 by National Oilwell.
 
He and his wife, Claudia, are both involved in amateur golf activities. Loren has been president of the Texas Golf Association since 2001, while Claudia serves as president of the Womens Texas Golf Association and is a member of the U.S. Womens Mid-Amateur committee for the USGA.
 
The USGA, golfs governing body in this country and Mexico, works closely with the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland to produce a uniform code of Rules of Golf that are observed worldwide.
 
The organizations most visible role, however, is played out each season in conducting 13 national championships, including the U.S. Open, U.S. Womens Open, and U.S. Senior Open. The other 10 national championships are exclusively for amateurs, and include the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Womens Amateur. Nearly 40,000 golfers entered USGA championships during 2003.
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Ortiz takes Web.com Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

Former Web.com Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Web.com Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Web.com Tour Player of the Year.

McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.

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Randall's Rant: Can we please have some rivalries?

By Randall MellJanuary 16, 2018, 12:00 am

Memo to the golf gods:

If you haven’t finalized the fates of today’s stars for the new year, could we get you to deliver what the game has lacked for so long?

Can we get a real, honest-to-goodness rivalry?

It’s been more than two decades since the sport has been witness to one.

With world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and former world No. 1 Rory McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship this week, an early-season showdown would percolate hope that this year might be all about rivalries.

It seems as if the stars are finally aligned to make up for our long drought of rivalries, of the recurring clashes you have so sparingly granted through the game’s history.

We’re blessed in a new era of plenty, with so many young stars blossoming, and with Tiger Woods offering hope he may be poised for a comeback. With Johnson, McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler among today’s dynamic cast, the possibility these titans will time their runs together on the back nine of Sundays in majors excites.

We haven’t seen a real rivalry since Greg Norman and Nick Faldo sparred in the late '80s and early '90s.

Woods vs. Phil Mickelson didn’t really count. While Lefty will be remembered for carving out a Hall of Fame career in the Tiger era, with 33 victories, 16 of them with Tiger in the field, five of them major championships, we get that Tiger had no rival, not in the most historic sense.


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Phil never reached No. 1, was never named PGA Tour Player of the Year, never won a money title and never dueled with Woods on Sunday on the back nine of a major with the title on the line.  Still, it doesn’t diminish his standing as the best player not named Tiger Woods over the last 20 years. It’s a feat so noteworthy it makes him one of the game’s all-time greats.

We’ve been waiting for an honest-to-goodness rivalry since Faldo and Norman took turns ruling at world No. 1 and dueling in big events, including the back nine of multiple majors. 

In the '70s, we had Nicklaus-Watson. In the '60s, it was Nicklaus-Palmer. In the '40s and '50s, it was Hogan, Snead and Nelson in a triumvirate mix, and in the '20s and '30s we had Hagen and Sarazen.

While dominance is the magic ingredient that can break a sport out of its niche, a dynamic rivalry is the next best elixir.

Dustin Johnson looks capable of dominating today’s game, but there’s so much proven major championship talent on his heels. It’s hard to imagine him consistently fending off all these challengers, but it’s the fending that would captivate us.

Johnson vs. McIlroy would be a fireworks show. So would Johnson vs. Thomas, or Thomas vs. Day or McIlroy vs. Rahm or Fowler vs. Koepka ... or any of those combinations.

Spieth is a wild card that intrigues.

While he’s not a short hitter, he isn’t the power player these other guys are, but his iron game, short game, putter and moxie combine to make him the most compelling challenger of all. His resolve, resilience and resourcefulness in the final round of his British Open victory at Royal Birkdale make him the most interesting amalgam of skill since Lee Trevino.

Woods vs. any of them? Well, if we get that, we promise never to ask for anything more.

So, if that cosmic calendar up there isn’t filled, how about it? How about a year of rivalries to remember?

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McIlroy: 2018 may be my busiest season ever

By Will GrayJanuary 15, 2018, 6:28 pm

With his return to competition just days away, Rory McIlroy believes that the 2018 season may be the most action packed of his pro career.

The 28-year-old has not teed it up since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in early October, a hiatus he will end at this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. It will be the start of a busy spring for the Ulsterman, who will also play next week in Dubai before a run of six PGA Tour events leading up to the Masters.

Speaking to the U.K.'s Telegraph, McIlroy confirmed that he will also make a return trip to the British Masters in October and plans to remain busy over the next 12 months.

"I might play more times this year than any before. I played 28 times in 2008 and I'm on track to beat that," McIlroy said. "I could get to 30 (events), depending on where I'm placed in the Race to Dubai. But I'll see."

McIlroy's ambitious plan comes in the wake of a frustrating 2017 campaign, when he injured his ribs in his first start and twice missed chunks of time in an effort to recover. He failed to win a worldwide event and finished the year ranked outside the top 10, both of which had not happened since 2008.

But having had more than three months to get his body and swing in shape, McIlroy is optimistic heading into the first of what he hopes will be eight starts in the 12 weeks before he drives down Magnolia Lane.

"I've worked hard on my short game and I'm probably feeling better with the putter than I ever have," McIlroy said. "I've had a lot of time to concentrate on everything and it all feels very good and a long way down the road."

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What's in the Bag: Sony Open winner Kizzire

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 15, 2018, 6:05 pm

Patton Kizzire earned his second PGA Tour victory by winning a six-hole playoff at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Take a look inside his bag.

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (10.5 degrees), with Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X shaft

Fairway Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Blue 95 TX shaft

Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees), with UST Mamiya AXIV Core 100 Hybrid shaft

Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), 718 CB (5-6), 718 MB (7-9), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Wedges: Titleist SM7 prototype (47, 52, 56, 60 degrees), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Tour prototype

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x