TaylorMade-adidas Golf took home three first-place finishes, and retired PGA of America CEO Joe Steranka was honored for all he has done for the golf industry in the 29th edition of the ING Industry Honors, announced last week at the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.
Called by some the “Academy Awards of the Golf Industry,” the ING Industry Honors program recognizes outstanding achievement in the golf business. Master of Ceremonies was former LPGA Tour star Jan Stephenson, and a Q&A with current star Paula Creamer followed the presentations. The awards program is conducted by the non-profit International Network of Golf, based in Lake Mary.
Nominees in a dozen categories are submitted throughout the year from anyone in the golf industry. Sub-committees that include experts in each category then trim the entries to the top three in each category. ING members then vote electronically to determine the winners, who are announced and recognized at the Industry Honors Presentation Press Conference.
The TaylorMade RocketBallz Tour Fairway Woods won in the Product Ingenuity-Market Leading Companies category. The matte-white finish and larger head is easy to align and launch. The Speed Pocket in the sole boosts ball speed dramatically for more distance. TaylorMade-adidas Golf also won in the PR category for a promotion in London prior to the Olympics, and for its print ad, “Love Comes With A Money-Back Guarantee.”
Capturing the Product Ingenuity-Emerging Companies category was SwingSmart, with its Golf Analyzer Sensor, which attaches to the underside of the shaft and provides swing statistics critical to improving your swing.
Another big winner in the ING Industry Honors Business Achievement category was Steranka, who retired last year after 25 years of service with the PGA of America, the last seven as CEO. Among his many accomplishments was steering a new industry government relations program We Are Golf, designed to achieve legislative and public affairs goals on behalf of the multi-billion dollar golf industry.
In the important Player Development category, SNAG was a winner in close voting over Tee It Forward and PGA Professional Rick Grayson. In 8,000 schools and 42 countries, SNAG Golf seems unstoppable at introducing golf around the globe.
A complete list of winners is below. The presentation took place Friday in the ING Hospitality Room, and was sponsored by PGA Golf Exhibitions and Tritan Tumblers.
THE 2012 INDUSTRY HONORS RESULTS
Winner: Joe Steranka, CEO, PGA of America; Also Nominated: Rick LaRose, Head Golf Coach, University of Arizona; Jack Purcell, President and Publisher, LINKS Magazine.
GOLF COURSE DESIGN
Winner: Ben Crenshaw & Bill Coore, Bandon Preserve, Bandon Dunes Oregon; Also Nominated: Martin Hawtree, Trump International Golf Links, Aberdeen Scotland; Rod Whitman, Cabot Links, Inverness, Nova Scotia.
Winner: SNAG; Also Nominated: Rick Grayson, PGA Teaching Professional, Springfield, MO.; Tee It Forward program from the PGA of America.
PRINT ADVERTISING – Product & Services
Winner: TaylorMade Golf – Loves Comes With A Money Back Guarantee; Also Nominated: The Golf Channel – Big Break Greenbrier; Mizuno Golf – The Gospel According To Luke.
PRINT ADVERTISING – Trade
Winner: Yamaha – How To Handle Rush Hour; Also Nominated: Exsite – Clean Up Your Game.
PRINT ADVERTISING – Travel & Real Estate
Winner: Pinehurst – Championships Define It; Also Nominated: Central Oregon – Memories; Primland – Picture Scotland With A Blue Ridge Backdrop.
PRODUCT INGENUITY – Emerging Companies
Winner: SwingSmart Training Tool; Also Nominated: Innovex V-Motion Tour Golf Ball; SCOR4161 Scoring Clubs.
PRODUCT INGENUITY – Market Leaders
Winner: TaylorMade RocketBallz Tour Fairway Woods; Also Nominated: Adams Idea Tech V4 Hybrids; Titleist AP2 (712 Series).
Winner: Adidas Golf – Olympics In London Promotion; Also Nominated: Bionic Gloves – The Humorous Signs Campaign; Golf Mesquite Nevada – Exposure Through Events
Winner: Billy Casper Golf’s World Largest Golf Outing; Also Nominated: Harmon’s Heroes Foundation; The Western Amateur
Winner: CBS Golf Promo – Commentators In Costume; Also Nominated: Cobra – It’s Go Time, with Rickie Fowler; Kia – Michelle Wie Shooting Skeet
TV COMMERCIAL SERIES
Winner: Bridgestone Golf – David Feherty In The Lab; Also Nominated: LPGA – It’s Different Out Here; PING – Scenes With Bubba and Hunter.