Orlando, Fla. – PGA/LPGA Professional Annika Sörenstam, who followed one of the most decorated careers in women’s golf history by becoming a spokesperson for improving the health of the next generation, has been named the recipient of the 2013 PGA First Lady of Golf Award.
The PGA First Lady of Golf Award, inaugurated in 1998 and presented biennially since 2011, is bestowed upon a woman who has made significant contributions to the promotion of the game of golf.
Annika Sörenstam, 43, will be honored at The PGA of America Awards, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, during the 61st PGA Merchandise Show at the Orange County Convention Center’s Chapin Theater in Orlando, Fla.
Born in Bro, Sweden, Annika Sörenstam is the first internationally born golfer to be named PGA First Lady of Golf and is the third award recipient with dual PGA of America and LPGA membership, following Renee Powell (2003) and Carol Mann (2008). Sörenstam was elected to PGA membership on April 19, 2013, and is a member of the North Florida PGA Section.
“Annika’s impact upon women’s golf in the modern era has been remarkable, setting a standard that may never be touched,” said PGA of America President Ted Bishop. “Her commitment to fitness and excellence made her a legend on the course, but her legacy in the game also includes a sincere dedication to growing a healthy next generation and inspiring future young women through golf. The PGA is honored to now call her the 2013 PGA First Lady of Golf.”
“I am excited to elevate my relationship with the North Florida PGA Section and its 1,500 Professionals, who work so diligently to promote and teach the game,” said Sorenstam, a resident of the Orlando area.
“Since my playing days, I have dedicated myself to growing the game through my ANNIKA Academy and Foundation. Now, this relationship with the Section and Reunion Resort presents a new path to help expand the game to even greater heights.”
In recent years, Annika Sörenstam has appeared on behalf of the North Florida PGA Section at several Golfest events across the region, including Orlando and Tampa. She has also given back by headlining the Section’s Annual Teaching Coaching Summit with her entire team from The Annika Academy. The Section and Sorenstam share a common interest in growing, enhancing and improving the game, and they are currently formulating plans to promote future endeavors, including junior golf development, diversity and women’s golf.
“The PGA of America is delighted to welcome Annika Sorenstam to the ranks of PGA membership,” said PGA President Ted Bishop. “Annika’s commitment to giving back to the game has been evident for years, and I am very pleased that the North Florida PGA Section has developed and nurtured such a strong working relationship with her. Annika is truly one of golf’s great ambassadors and trendsetters.”
“Annika Sörenstam is such an iconic figure in golf,” said Rich Smith, executive director and CEO of the North Florida PGA Section. “We are so proud that she has become a member of The PGA of America and the North Florida PGA Section, and we are excited about the opportunity we have to work with Annika to grow our game.”
For more information about the North Florida PGA visit www.nfpga.com or call 386-256-1221.