Two-time Masters champion Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore, ASGCA, have been chosen as the 2021 recipients of the ASGCA Donald Ross Award. The award, given annually since 1976, is presented to those making a significant contribution to the game of golf and the profession of golf course architecture. It will be presented to Mr. Crenshaw and Mr. Coore in October as part of the 75th ASGCA Annual Meeting in Cleveland.

A lifelong Texan, Crenshaw’s success as a professional golfer was a standout career on its own, securing 19 PGA Tour victories. But a visit to Brookline Country Club in Massachusetts as a 16-year-old sparked an interest in golf course architecture that endures to this day. After serving as a player consultant on the design and construction of the TPC Course at Las Colinas, Texas, Crenshaw joined with Coore in 1985 to form the golf design firm that bears their names.

After graduating from Wake Forest University, Coore spent the first five years of his golf course architecture career with ASGCA Past Presidents Pete and Alice Dye, learning design, construction and maintenance of golf courses in Florida, North Carolina, Texas, Virginia and Canada. He formed his own design company in 1982 and soon after completed courses at Rockport Country Club, Rockport, Texas; Kings Crossing Golf and Country Club, Corpus Christi, Texas; and Golf de Medoc in Bordeaux, France.

Together, the pair have designed some of the world’s most unique and well-respected golf courses, including: Sand Hills Golf Club, Mullen, Nebraska; Sheep Ranch Golf Course, Bandon, Oregon; Cabot Cliffs, Nova Scotia, Canada; Kapalua Plantation Course, Maui, Hawaii; Streamsong Resort Red Course, Fort Meade, Florida; Friar’s Head, Riverhead, N.Y.; and the new Te Arai Links, New Zealand. Among their course renovations is Pinehurst No. 2, Pinehurst, North Carolina.

“Ben Crenshaw embodies everything you could ever ask for in a golf professional,” said ASGCA President Forrest Richardson. “When you combine his love for golf course architecture and his work with a respected golf course architect on an equal basis – hand-in-hand – there may be no better example of how the tour player can have a positive influence on the design of great golf courses.”

Richardson first encountered Coore after Bill had worked with the Dyes, before Coore joined forces with Crenshaw. “Bill Coore has always taken time to mentor young designers. Generations to come will benefit from his unselfish effort to pass along his philosophy and approach to creating great golf experiences,” Richardson said. “Together, Ben and Bill demonstrate the great benefit that comes from collaboration in our profession, especially when the work is carried out with balance and respect.”

Crenshaw resides in Austin, Texas, with his wife, Julie, and daughters Katherine, Claire, and Anna Riley. Coore and his wife, Sue, reside in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The Donald Ross Award is presented by the ASGCA Awards Committee, co-chaired by ASGCA Past Presidents Steve Smyers, ASGCA, and Rees Jones, ASGCA Fellow (the 2013 Donald Ross Award recipient).

Past Donald Ross Award Recipients

2020    Renee Powell, golf pioneer/player/course owner
2019    Joe Passov, golf writer
2018    President George Herbert Walker Bush, U.S. President
2017    Alice Dye, ASGCA Fellow, golf course architect
2016    Michael Bamberger, golf writer
2015    Bradley S. Klein, golf writer
2014    Maj. Dan Rooney, founder, Folds of Honor Foundation
2013    Rees Jones, ASGCA, golf course architect
2012    Bill Kubly, golf course builder
2011    James Dodson, golf writer/editor
2010    Tim Finchem, PGA Tour Commissioner
2009    Ron Dodson, sustainable golf advocate
2008    George Peper, golf writer
2007    Dr. Michael Hurdzan, ASGCA, golf course architect
2006    Jim Awtrey, chief executive officer, PGA of America
2005    John Singleton, irrigation pioneer
2004    Thomas Cousins, philanthropist, urban golf developer
2003    Bill Campbell, president, USGA, captain, Royal & Ancient Golf Club
2002    Byron Nelson, professional golfer
2001    Jack Nicklaus, ASGCA, professional golfer, golf course architect
2000    Jaime Ortiz-Patino, owner and president, Valderrama Golf Club
1999    Arnold Palmer, professional golfer
1998    Judy Bell, president, USGA
1997    Gene Sarazen, professional golfer
1996    Ron Whitten, golf writer
1995    Pete Dye, ASGCA, golf course architect
1994    James R. Watson, agronomist
1993    Brent Wadsworth, golf course builder
1992    Paul Fullmer, ASGCA executive secretary
1991    Michael Bonallack, secretary, Royal & Ancient Golf Club
1990    John Zoller, executive director, Northern California Golf Association
1989    Dick Taylor, editor, “Golf World” magazine
1988    Frank Hannigan, executive director, USGA
1987    Charles Price, writer, “Golf World” magazine
1986    Deane Beman, commissioner, PGA Tour
1985    Peter Dobereiner, “London Observer” columnist, author
1984    Dinah Shore, sponsor of women’s golf tournaments
1983    Al Radko, director, USGA Green Section
1982    Geoffrey Cornish, ASGCA, golf course architect, historian
1981    James Rhodes, governor of Ohio
1980    Gerald Micklem, captain, Royal & Ancient
1979    Joe Dey, executive director, USGA
1978    Herb and Joe Graffis, founders, National Golf Foundation
1977    Herbert Warren Wind, “The New Yorker” columnist, author
1976    Robert Trent Jones, ASGCA, ASGCA founding member

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