MARIETTA, Ga. – Wendell Couch of Greensboro was named the recipient of the 2010 Georgia State Golf Association’s Bill Todd Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a GSGA volunteer. The award was presented at the Association’s Annual Meeting, held January 23 at Cherokee Town Club in Atlanta.
The Bill Todd Award annually honors a volunteer who maintains the highest standard of service and stewardship to the GSGA. It is named for one of GSGA’s most valued volunteers who spent more than 20 years serving the Association. Todd served as GSGA’s president in 1995 and gave of his time in many ways before his passing in 2001.
For over 30 years, the GSGA has benefitted from the many ways in which Couch has given of his time and talents to the Association. He was elected to the GSGA Board of Directors in 1980, to a term on the Executive Committee for 1981-83, and then served as President from 1984-86. He has remained an active Past President since then. He is currently a member of Athens Country Club and Reynolds Plantation.
During Couch’s tenure on the Executive Committee and as President, several expansions of the Association’s service occurred. One of the most important was the conversion of all GSGA member club courses to the USGA course and slope rating system. This project was completed by none other than Bill Todd and his good friend, Col. Ike Fenton, another Todd Award winner. The GSGA also assumed the affairs of the Atlanta Golf Association and began the “Kids in Golf” scholarship (the forerunner of the Yates Scholarships) and its women’s competitions programs.
Couch has also served as President of the Georgia Junior Golf Foundation on two different occasions, on the GSGA Championship Committee, currently chairs the Senior Committee, is a member of the Nominating Committee and continues to work at several GSGA competitions as a rules official. He is a member of the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame Board and a past chair and current member of the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame Authority.
For his dedication to the game and particularly to the GSGA, Couch was inducted as a member of the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame in 2007, joining fellow GSGA Past Presidents Fielding Wallace and his friend Billy Peters as the Hall’s only amateur golf contributors.
About his friend, Peters remarked, “I am so happy that Wendell has won this award. He has cared so much about the Association for many years. I recall that when he followed me as president, I admired very much his way of handling the business affairs of the GSGA. It was important to have someone like him at that time, with the changes we were going through.”
The presentation of this award honors Todd’s memory and recognizes an individual who exemplifies his volunteer spirit and involvement. Originally known as the President’s Service Award, it was renamed in 2002. It was then deemed that all former winners of the President’s Service Award would also be known as Bill Todd Award winners. The winner is chosen each year by a committee that includes all past recipients and volunteers from each area of GSGA service. Nominations for the award may be submitted by any GSGA volunteer.
Founded in 1916, the Georgia State Golf Association (GSGA) received its official charter on June 24, 1924. Since that date, the GSGA has grown to one of the largest state amateur golf associations in the country, with over 350 member clubs and 85,000 individual members. With a mission to promote and preserve amateur golf in the state of Georgia, GSGA offers a computerized handicapping service, course rating and measuring, and annually conducts a full schedule of statewide competitions for men and women of all age groups. Other services include a summer-long junior sectional program, award-winning Golf Georgia magazine, membership recognition and rewards programs and a charitable foundation administering two college scholarship programs.
Georgia State Golf Association Bill Todd Award History
1993: Billy Peters, Blakely
1996: Col. F. “Ike” Fenton, Peachtree City
1998: Bill Todd, Marietta
2000: Gene McClure, Atlanta
2002: Nancy Henning, Roswell
2003: Roger Cordes, Decatur
2004: Adrian C. McManus, Jr., Athens
2005: Bob Henning, Roswell
2006: Richard R. (Dick) Franklin, Dunwoody
2007: W. Richard Wilson, Columbus
2008: G. Alan Katz, Marietta
2009: Bob Flynn, Kennesaw
2010: Wendell Couch, Greensboro