The golfing world lost one of its leading lights with the passing of Carol Mann, aged 77. Carol was a force to be reckoned with and her influence was felt both on the golf course and in the administration of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA).
Joining the LPGA Tour in 1961, she claimed her first tournament win with a major championship at the Women’s Western Open in 1964. Throughout the 1960s and 70s, Mann towered over the competition winning 38 LPGA events including two major championships.
Her accomplishments on the golf course earned her the LPGA Vare Trophy for the lowest scoring average in 1968 and the tour’s leading money winner in 1969. However, Mann felt that there was more to do both for women’s golf and for the LPGA Tour.
She took a more active role in the development of the LPGA and, in 1973, stepped into the position of its President and would serve in that capacity until 1976. One of her main goals was to increase the coverage, sponsorship and purses for LPGA events. Under her leadership, the changes were noticeable. By 1980, the LPGA Tour had an increase in prize money of more than 800 percent.
Carol Mann was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1977. She gave her time and energy to support the World Golf Hall of Fame and was dedicated to developing the relationship between the Hall of Fame and its members.
In 2008 she was named the PGA’s First Lady of Golf.
She once said, “I enjoy being a person, and getting old and dying are fine. I never think how people will remember Carol Mann. The mark I made is an intimate satisfaction.”
Carol need not worry about how people will remember her. Her impact and legacy will live on inside the Museum and in the hearts of all who knew her. She will be greatly missed and her contributions to the game of golf will not be forgotten.