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February 24, 2009

Nichols honored by Tennessee PGA with Distinguished Career Award

By BUDDY PEARSON
Cookeville HERALD-CITIZEN Managing Editor

COOL SPRINGS — Bobby Nichols is still remembered and respected by his golfing peers. Nearly a year after his death, Nichols has been honored posthumously with the Tennessee Section PGA Distinguished Career Award.

During the Club Car Awards Luncheon held in conjunction with the Section’s 42nd Annual Meeting on Monday at the Embassy Suites in Cools Springs, Nichols was recognized for his accomplishments during his 40-plus years as a PGA professional.

“This would have meant so much to him because this award came from you all,” said Elaine Garrison, who accepted the award on behalf of Ironwood Golf Course. “He loved golf so much and you all meant so much to him.”

As a long-time PGA Professional and owner of Ironwood, Nichols mentored many of the attending PGA Professionals while he served over 30 years as the head coach of the TTU golf programs.

As a player, Nichols won over 100 tournaments, including the 1992 Tennessee State Open as well as the 1994, 1996 and 1997 Tennessee Senior Opens. He qualified and played in 21 PGA Club Professional Championships and two U.S. Senior Open Championships. Nichols also qualified for every Tennessee PGA Cup Match Team from its inception in 1968 to 2007, serving as Team Captain four times.

Nichols’ career as a PGA pro began in 1963 as the head professional at the Cookeville Country Club. Nichols later became the PGA Pro at Ironwood where he eventually took over as the owner.

“His spirit lives at Ironwood,” said Garrison. “That is where we are going to proudly display this award.”

The Distinguished Career Award is the highest honor the Tennessee PGA can bestow upon a golf professional.

To be eligible, an individual must be a PGA member for over 25 years and have made significant contributions to the game of golf.

A complete list of winners from the awards luncheon are available at the TPGA web site at www.golfhousetennessee.com.