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Utah PGA Names Chris Newson ‘Professional of the Year’

The Utah Section PGA Board of Directors and Award Committee members are pleased to announce another great group of Award Winners to represent The Utah Section. “Those who have been selected as your Utah Section Award Winners are those that possess professional integrity and honesty. They exemplify leadership within the golf community and provide a very high level of service at their facility. They also show leadership and support for their fellow golf professionals,” said Scott Whitaker, Utah PGA Executive Director. Taking into consideration the criteria for award winners, the committee spent a great deal of time and gave a lot of careful consideration in selecting the following PGA Golf Professionals as the 2012-2013 award winners: Professional of the Year- Chris Newson, Soldier Hollow Golf CourseAssistant Professional of the Year – Craig Norman, Hobble Creek Golf CourseTeacher of the Year – Kirk Abbeglen, Schneiter’s RiversideJunior Golf Leader – Todd Mullen, Sunset ViewMerchandiser of the Year, Public Facility – Darci Dehlin-Olsen, Roosevelt Golf CourseMerchandiser of the Year, Private Facility – Bobby Trunzo, Park Meadows Country ClubHorton Smith Award – Chris Stover, Palisade Golf CourseBill Strausbaugh Award – Jared Barnes, Glen Eagle Golf CoursePresident’s Plaque Awards – Jeremy Green, Nibley ParkGentleman Jeff Award – Don Branca, Mulligan’s Golf The highest honor the PGA gives to it’s members is the Professional of the Year. This year, we congratulate Chris Newson, Head Professional at Soldier Hollow Golf Course as the Utah Section PGA Professional of the Year. For Newson, all of this began the summer after high school in 1989, when he applied for a grounds job at Lakeside Golf Course in West Bountiful and also ended up working part-time in the pro shop. He graduated from the University of Utah, began his PGA apprenticeship and became a Class A PGA member; all while working for head pro Mike Bicker at Lakeside.Newson became the first assistant at Wasatch Mountain State Park Golf Course in 1998, which ultimately would position him to become Soldier Hollow’s head pro when the course opened in 2004 at the other end of the Wasatch State Park property. While working at Wasatch, Newson was able to participate in the feasibility study for Soldier Hollow, then was involved in choosing the architects of the course and the clubhouse, while becoming the course’s head professional. Staging the Public Links may have added considerable stress to his job description, and not just during the tournament itself. But Newson was willing to endure some tough times and work through some challenges, knowing the finished product would be worthwhile. Having a USGA event right in our own back yard was a great thing for Utah Golf. Along with some of our top PGA Golf Professional being awarded, the Utah Section also recognizes a group of amateurs that contribute to the success of Utah Golf. These awards will be given to those amateur golfers that best represent the true “Spirit of the Game”. They are of the highest personal character and show diligence in their support and positive promotion of golf and the people that play the game. This support has been shown through service to allied golf associations, service and support of the Utah Section PGA, or support of golf community activities and interests. Bill Howard “Citizen of the Year” Award – Larry Olsen, Les Olsen CompanySuperintendent of the Year-Public Facility – Joey Olsen, Roosevelt Golf CourseSuperintendent of the Year-Private Facility – Tom Rhoades, The Jeremy Golf ClubJohn Wallace “Sales Person” of the Year – Mike Stanger, Nike Golf Again, we congratulate those who have been selected as 2012-2013 Utah Section PGA Award Winners. We thank you for making golf a better game.