Daytona Beach, Fla. – Past USGA president Judy Bell has been named the recipient of the inaugural Sherry G. Lumpkin Founders Award. The award is named in honor of Sherry Lumpkin, mother to LPGA-USGA Girls Golf founder and renowned golf teacher Sandy LaBauve.
“I am honored to present the Sherry G. Lumpkin Founders Award to Judy Bell,” said LaBauve, pointing out that Bell initiated the USGA’s support of the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program in the early 1990s. “Sherry and Judy share the same passion for bringing young girls into the game through fun, camaraderie and teaching life skills. Girls all over the country are thankful for her contributions. Judy is truly a shining star in the growth of girls golf and the perfect recipient for the first Founders Award.”
Established in 2009 – the 20th anniversary of the Girls Golf program – the Sherry G. Lumpkin Founders Award recognizes an individual who demonstrates incredible passion, ongoing commitment and extraordinary dedication to securing the game’s future by cultivating interest among girls in the game of golf. Bell was presented the award by LaBauve at the players’ dinner preceding the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship at The Country Club of North Carolina in Pinehurst on July 18. It is a testament to the success of the Girls Golf program and to Bell’s and the USGA’s support, that 25 former or current Girls Golf members are competing in the Championship which is being held July 19-24.
Bell serves as Consulting Director for the USGA Grants & Fellowship department which operates the Association’s “For the Good of the Game” Grants Initiative. Since 1997, this initiative has provided more than $65 million to organizations across the United States that conduct golf programs for underserved children and individuals with disabilities, including nearly $2 million to Girls Golf.
Bell, a lifelong golfer, joined the USGA in 1961 as part of the USGA U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship Committee. She has held a variety of positions within the USGA and, in 1987, was the first woman elected to the USGA’s Executive Committee. On Jan. 27, 1996, she was elected as the 54th president of the USGA – the first and only woman to hold that position.
On the golf course, Bell was a very successful amateur player, first winning the Kansas State Women’s Amateur Championship in 1952 and again in 1953 and 1954. She set the U.S. Women’s Open 18-hole scoring record in 1964 with a 67 (the record has since been broken) and was a member of the 1960 and 1962 USA Curtis Cup Teams. She went on to become captain for the 1986 and 1988 squads, as well as captained the 1988 USA Women’s World Amateur Team and 2000 USA Men’s World Amateur Team.
About Sherry Lumpkin
Sherry G. Lumpkin is the mother of LPGA-USGA Girls Golf founder Sandy LaBauve. An artist by trade and talented amateur golfer, Lumpkin is the wife of nationally recognized golf professional Jack Lumpkin and took the reins in helping LaBauve and her siblings develop their golf games. Lumpkin started a junior program at their golf club, which grew to include a junior club championship and junior locker rooms at the course. Noticing fewer opportunities for girls in golf than boys, Lumpkin hosted the first girls’ state tournament in Georgia at Cherokee Country Club in 1976. All three Lumpkin children would go on to play collegiate golf. In 1988, LaBauve was asked to start a Girl Scout Golf Program and, inspired by her mother’s dedication to junior golf, modeled what is now called the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program in the same manner as her mother’s junior programs.
About LPGA-USGA Girls Golf
The LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program was formed to connect girls, ages 7 to 17, with the game of golf. A developmental junior golf program and the only national initiative of its kind, Girls Golf presents an opportunity for girls to make lasting friendships, gain self-confidence, learn to compete and have fun, while fostering a lifetime of enjoyment for the game. LPGA-USGA Girls Golf, with nearly 200 sites around the country and more than 60,000 participants since its inception in 1989, is administered through a partnership between The LPGA (Ladies Professional Golf Association) Foundation and the United States Golf Association (USGA), both 501(c)(3) charitable organizations.