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UGA Gets Two New Board Members, Kurt Bernhisel, Denise Vilven
Kurt Bernhisel and Denise Vilven were elected to the UGA Board of Directors last night at the UGA Annual Meeting at Hidden Valley Country Club. They fill positions left by outgoing board members Allen Simkins and Reed McGregor who each served nine years on the board. They also each served one year as president.
Under UGA by-laws each board member serves three-year terms and is restricted to three terms.
Kurt Bernhisel, 59, has a long history of involvement with golf in Utah in both public links and country club affiliation. He is an accomplished golfer. He is currently a member at Bonneville Golf Course and was a member of Willow Creek Country Club for 15 years where he also earned club champion honors in 1995. He played high school and college golf at Highland High School and the University of Utah. At Highland his team won the state golf championship every year and he was medalist one year. He graduated from Highland in 1972. He has played actively in the UGA 8-Man Team leagues at Willow Creek and Bonneville, and has competed on the UGA tournament circuit, winning numerous tournaments including the Salt Lake City Am, and low am at the City Parks Open. Recently he has competed favorably in UGA senior events, winning low amateur honors at the Utah Senior Open, and qualified to play in the USGA Senior Amateur.
He graduated from the University of Utah Medical School in 1980, did his internship and residency at Loma Linda University in Internal Medicine. He returned to Salt Lake to join the staff of the University of Utah Medical Center where he has worked for 27 years. He became board certified in Internal Medicine and Emergency Medicine. He was the Division Chief for eight years, and is a Professor of Surgery in the Emergency Medical Division.
Family is the center of his life. He is married to Betsy Carling and they have five daughters and seven grandchildren. His father, Ted, was an internal medicine physician in Salt Lake City, and his great, great grandfather, John Bernhisel, was the first doctor in the Utah and was Utah’s Territorial Representative in the U.S. Congress. He has a sister, two uncles, several cousins, a niece and a nephew who are doctors, and their daughter, Ashlie, is a junior in medical school at the University of Utah. His mother, Maxine, was an accomplished tennis player and a high level competition skier.
Denise Vilven comes to the UGA Board of Directors with a more versatile golf background than anyone else on the board. It all began when she married Doug Vilven in 1975 and they have been partners in a long and varied golf career ever since. They are currently the owner-managers of Golf in the Round and their experiences leading to their current spot have been wide and varied. Denise was born in Salt Lake City, Sept. 21, 1953 to Mike and Kaliope Sargetakis. She graduated from Highland High School in 1972 and attended the University of Utah. Doug and Denise have two children, Lt. Mike Vilven, USAF, and Dede Vilven, a 2011 graduate of the University of Utah. Doug’s first professional job was in Illinois and Denise worked on the maintenance crew, learning the other key aspect to golf. They moved back to Utah when Doug took the head professional job at Oquirrh Hills Golf Course and true to form, Denise learned another aspect of golf, managing food operations. Denise joined the women’s golf association and joined the UGA in 1979 and she has been a member ever since. In 1982 they moved to Park City Golf Course and Denise managed the books and the golf shop inventory. She was also very active in the women’s golf association and she captained the women’s team in the Utah Women’s Golf Association activities. She also returned to the University of Utah where she finished her degree in 1991 as a non-traditional student. In 1993 they opened Golf in the Round in Salt Lake City. Denise helped form the Old Mill Women’s Association and helped write the initial by-laws. She also joined the Meadowbrook Women’s Golf Association where she was club champion for five years. She has also had a keen interest in the Rules of Golf and has attended several USGA/PGA Rules Workshops and has officiated numerous tournaments.
She has been an active member of the Greek Orthodox Church where she has taught Sunday School for 15 years, volunteered to help the Greek Festival, and has been involved in women’s philanthropy.