LADIES NATIONAL GOLF ASSOCIATION HISTORY
The Ladies National Golf Association (LNGA) has a rich and illustrious 90-year history as evidenced by the many recognizable names throughout our historical records. Patty Berg, Babe Zaharias, Betsy Rawls, Judy Bell, Barbara Barrow, Nancy Lopez, Carol Semple Thompson, Ellen Port, Grace Park, Brittany Lang, Paige McKenzie, Lorena Ochoa, and Bethany Wu depict the LNGA Amateur Champions who have gone on to professional careers, Curtis Cup players/captains, golf stage newscasters, and World Golf Hall of Fame.
The original Tri-State Women’s Golf Association (Oklahoma, Missouri, and Kansas) grew rapidly and formed the Missouri Valley Women’s Golf Association to admit Iowa and Nebraska on June 9, 2916. Later, expansion was again needed for championship golf tournaments, and the group became known as The Women’s Trans-Mississippi Golf Association when officially organized on February 17, 1927. The twenty states included provided an opportunity for many excellent golfers to compete who had been previously excluded. The organization now included states bordering the east bank of the Mississippi to the eastern divide of the Rocky Mountains. Then again, in 1973, the Trans-Mississippi was renamed Women’s Trans National Golf Association as the association attracted national and world-wide attention.
2019 brings excitement for the association as the LNGA honors tradition with a logo that depicts a modern golfer exemplifying moving into the future at the center of the traditional shield and purple colors. A 24-member board of directors is comprised of volunteers from across the United States who conduct highly competitive championships with elite players from around the globe.
The first Amateur Championship was a match play format and conducted in 1927 at Blue Hills Country Club in Kansas City, MO with Mrs. M. Burns Horn of Kansas City, MO as Champion. Many prestigious venues across the United States have hosted this WAGR listed championship while crowning elite golfers as Champions. Locations such as Mid Pines, Stonewall, Pinehurst and San Diego CC are among the list of notable hosts.
The Board of Directors voted to change the Amateur format from Match Play to a 72-Hole Stroke Play Championship in 2012. The final Match Play Championship was contested at The Members Club at Woodcreek in Elgin, SC. The inaugural Stroke Play Championship was held at Schaffers Mill Golf and Lake Club in Truckee, CA. Miss Breanna Elliott from Melbourne, Australia was the 2012 Amateur Champion.
Amateur Championship history was made when both a mother and daughter became Champions. Jane Bastanchury Booth was the LNGA Champion in 1967, 1969 and 1971, and her daughter Kellee Booth took the Championship honor in 1999. Team Winners have been awarded since 1927 with Sr Medalists honored since 1950 and Junior Medalists since 1953.
SENIOR FOUR BALL
The LNGA Senior Four Ball Championship, added in 1992, was played at Tides Inn, Irvington, VA. The duo of Marguerite Willoughby and Betty Wren, both from Williamsburg, VA, captured the title. This popular format has captured the hearts of players as evidenced by participation and their forging of friendships and great camaraderie. Locations in California, Arizona, Nevada and Georgia have provided great venues for this event.
The Ladies National Golf Association continues its dedication to providing players with exemplary golf championships while providing opportunities for great fellowship and encouraging good sportsmanship – all while maintaining the best interests of the game of golf.