Powell is the second African-American woman to play on the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour.
"I am honored and humbled to be recognized by UMES," said Powell. "This is my first honorary degree from a college in the U.S. and all because of my dad's vision of teaching me the game of golf."
At age three, Powell picked up a golf club her father had cut down to fit her tiny hands. She entered her first tournament at age 12 and won her division. It was a sign of things to come. She went on to play golf at Ohio University and The Ohio State University, serving as captain of the women's golf team at each institution.
She debuted on the LPGA tour in 1967 and competed in 250 professional golf tournaments. She won the 1973 Kelly Springfield Open in Brisbane, Australia.
In the early 1970s, Powell visited Vietnam as part of a USO goodwill tour. In 1979, she made history when she became the first woman to be named head professional at a golf course in the United Kingdom.
Powell finished her LPGA career in 1980 and taught golf in Africa and Europe. She eventually returned home to the Canton area, where she currently serves as the head professional at Clearview, where she learned the game. In 2001, Clearview - the course her father, William, built from scratch - was named to the National Register of Historic Places by the U.S. Department of the Interior.
Also in 2001, the Powell family established the Clearview Legacy Foundation to promote education, preserve the golf course for future generations, develop improved facilities for teaching golf and expand turfgrass research.
Powell received the Professional Golf Association's First Lady of Golf Award in 2003.
· 1989 - Inductee, Ohio Women's Hall of Fame
· 1990 - Recipient Dr. Martin L. King, Jr. Drum Major for Justice Award
· 1992 - National Golf Foundation / Jack Nicklaus Golf Family of the Year
· 2007 - William and Renee Powell, inductees, Ohio Golf Hall of Fame Rolex for the Love of the Game Award
· 2008 - Honorary Doctor of Law degree - St. Andrews University, Scotland
· 2010 - Top Female Teaching Professionals, Golf Digest
Those highlights underscore why UMES, an 1890s land-grant institution, chose to recognized her. UMES is the nation's only historically black institution with a professional golf management program where 43 students currently are pursuing their studies. The program's charter class is scheduled to graduate in the spring of 2012.
Topics: Powell, Renee