Beans Kelly still is shaking her head over the latest honor to come her way.
A former Lutherville resident, in her 12th year as head coach of women's golf at the University of Georgia, Kelly has been selected the LPGA Coach of the Year by the organization's Teaching and Club Professional Division.
"It's a very nice honor," Kelly said by telephone from her Athens (Ga.) office, "but it stunned me a little. I was nominated by my section for the first time, and got that award. As a result I went on the national ballot, but I had no idea I would be chosen. I was quite surprised."
The prize-winners will be honored during the division's annual championship in August.
The award was established in 1981 to honor a woman golf professional who is actively engaged in teaching and coaching golf at the college or high school level. She must have demonstrated responsibility in the areas of coaching, recruiting, program development, tournament organization and professional involvement in athletic associations.
Kelly, 38, has guided teams to four Southeastern Conference championships and 10 NCAA tournament berths (five top 10s), is a two-time choice as her sport's coach of the year in the SEC, and has sent more than a dozen players to the LPGA tour, including Vicki Goetze, Nanci Bowen and Stephanie Maynor.
Her students excel in the classroom as well. Over one stretch, her teams compiled the highest cumulative grade-point average among Georgia teams for three consecutive years.
Additionally, she directs several golf academies, serves as director for a women's intercollegiate tournament hosted by the Univerity of Georgia, and last year served on the Teaching and Club Pro championship committee.
McLean now officer
William McLean, a member of the Elkridge Club, became the newest officer of the Maryland State Golf Association during its annual meeting at Columbia Country Club last week.
Robert Abbo, of Columbia CC, was elected president; William Smith, Hillendale CC, secretary; Dawson Stump, Green Spring Valley Hunt Club, treasurer, and Jack Emich, executive director. The vice presidents are Edward Brown, Baltimore CC; Robert Lerner, Woodmont CC; Roger Finn, Fountain Head CC; Edward Harrington, Congressional CC; Dennis Wells, Chartwell CC; Fielding Yost, Old South CC; Chris Nicholson, Eagle's Nest; Richard Weitzman, Norbeck CC; and McLean.
Bill Clarke, whose contributions to golf span nearly 50 years, has been named this year's honoree of the annual "Legends of the PGA" program. He will be honored at the annual PGA Merchandise Show Friday through Monday in Orlando, Fla.
The program recognizes living past presidents for contributions to golf and the PGA of America.
Clarke, 73, who served as national PGA president in 1973-75, is credited with initiating the organization's business schools, a process that revolutionized an apprentice's path to membership. He became head professional at Hillendale CC in 1954 and retired from that position, as well as the office of executive director, in 1989.
Recognized as one of the country's foremost rules authorities, Clarke has spent 23 years as an official at the Masters, and has officiated at all the Ryder Cup matches held in the United States since 1967. He is a past president of the Middle Atlantic PGA, and his numerous section honors include twice being chosen the player of the year.
Irwin among Cattail field
Hale Irwin and Chi Chi Rodriguez will be among the top players on hand when the second Toyota Invitational tournament is held Aug. 25-26 at Cattail Creek CC in western Howard County. The $200,000 event, which will include Middle Atlantic PGA pros and their respective club champions, is expected to showcase 20 pros from the Senior PGA Tour, and is considered the forerunner of a possible permanent stop for the tour.
Other committed Seniors include Jim Albus, Jim Dent, Bruce Devlin, Gibby Gilbert, Hubert Green and David Graham.
Pub Date: 1/19/97