Pak will be the first Korean to receive the award
LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (June 17, 2020) – As part of its celebration during the original week of the 120th U.S. Open Championship, the USGA will honor 2020 Bob Jones Award recipient Se Ri Pak with a variety of specialized content on its digital channels.
The champion of the 1998 U.S. Women’s Open and a World Golf Hall of Famer, Pak was named the recipient of the Bob Jones Award, the USGA’s highest honor, in January. The award has been presented annually since 1955 to an individual who demonstrates the spirit, personal character and respect for the game exhibited by Jones, winner of nine USGA championships.
Pak, 42, a native of the Republic of Korea, is being featured throughout the week on USGA.org through a dedicated landing page that chronicles her historic career and broader influence on the game. Specific content includes an in-depth recap of her thrilling 1998 championship victory, a look at her final U.S. Women’s Open round in 2016 and a video that celebrates her award and her significant impact on the game.
Additionally, a pair of films highlighting the 1998 U.S. Women's Open, as well as the last two hours of the playoff telecast, will be featured on demand on the USGA streaming app, available free on Amazon Fire, Roku and Apple TV.
As one of the most influential pioneers in golf, Pak inspired an entire generation of Korean golfers during her 20-year professional career, which included five major victories among her 39 wins. She burst onto the LPGA Tour at age 20 in 1998, and her playoff victory in the U.S. Women’s Open at Blackwolf Run, where she became the youngest winner in the history of the championship to that point, became a defining moment in the game.
Despite carrying the attention of an entire country, Pak maintained a friendly attitude and humble demeanor that elevated her status beyond the LPGA Tour and inspired golfers of all genders and ethnicities across the world.
Pak was originally slated to receive her award on Wednesday during a ceremony at the U.S. Open. A new date will be announced in the coming months.
Industry reaction to Pak’s Bob Jones Award honor includes:
“When you look at that company, it’s where she belongs. It’s the people who have left the game different in so many ways, and on so many continents, and have changed the way young and old feel about the sport of golf… If Bob Jones were here today, he’d be the first one to say, ‘That’s someone who deserves to be the Bob Jones Award winner.’”
“Being Korean, being a minority, seeing a minority win, I remember watching like, ‘Wow, that’s what I want to do.’ She really paved the way for all of us.”
“She didn’t just come over here for five or six years and win a bunch of tournaments and leave. She really made an impact and taught the girls that they needed to learn the language and be part of the tour and give back, and that’s what you see in this current generation.”
“She has led an entire nation into golf… I don't think any of us will ever completely know or understand what she went through to become the champion she became… I don't know how you could be more deserving.”