This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
Allied Associations: PWGA I


Never Too Late to Be a Difference Maker


t’s never too late to get into golf and end up making a big difference to the game. Case in point is 68-year-old Julie


Gonzalez, a past president and cur- rent rules committee member of the Pacific Women’s Golf Association. A self-proclaimed “late starter,”


golf wasn’t even on Gonzalez’ radar until she was around the age of 38. Prior to that, her love was recreational softball. Only problem was, with each


season on the diamond, she found her knees giving away more and more. “I started looking for a different game I could get invested in,” said Gonzalez, a now retired former hu- man resources director for the County and City of San Francisco. “I wanted to still be able to stay active.” She’d not only find golf, but fell


head over heels for it, even if her first lesson didn’t exactly go as planned. “I started taking lessons at Hard-


ing Park and started playing at the 9-hole Golden Gate Park Course,” recalled Gonzalez. “I still remember my first instructor telling me, ‘Show me your swing.’ I did and I heard a big groan, ‘Oh, a softball player.’ My second instructor said the same thing but in a positive way. In his mind, he had more to work with.” Since those early days, Gonzalez’


relationship with the game has only flourished. Along with continuing to serve


the PWGA, which was the first as- sociation she’d join, Gonzalez’ roles in golf have included: being a USGA Regional Affairs Committee member, an NCGA committee member and tournament official, a member of the San Francisco Mayor’s Women’s Golf Council and acting as the current


chairperson of the Cali- fornia Women’s Cham- pionship Committee. Who said retirement


can be boring? “What motivates me I think is just the game of golf and its traditions,” Gonzalez said. “There’s the spirit and history of the game. Looking back, I wish I would’ve gotten involved at a younger age.” Thing is, as Gonzalez will tell you,


she didn’t really have any chances to get involved with golf as a youth. At


“What motivates me I think is just the game of golf and its


traditions. There’s the spirit and history of the game. Looking back, I wish I would’ve gotten involved at a younger age.”


the time, there wasn’t any golf for girls in high school. Women’s golf wasn’t all that big,


either, despite the efforts of pioneers like Helen Lengfeld, who founded the PWGA in 1947. Having seen where women’ golf


was, it’s not a surprise that in the roles she has since been, Gonzalez has tire- lessly pushed to make the game more accessible to all. “I want to promote golf for


women and also boys and girls. I’m happy to be a resource person for them,” Gonzalez said. “Between all of the different organizations I work with, I can see that we all are working towards the same goals.”


Julie Gonzalez Among the latest united golf


ventures that made Gonzalez happy was the formation of the now annual Drive, Chip and Putt Championship sponsored by the PGA, a nationwide junior golf skills competition open to boys and girls ages 7-15 that culminates in finalists playing at Augusta National the Sunday before Masters week. “I was absolutely ecstatic when


they started the Drive, Chip and Putt Championship,” Gonzalez said. “I think that ought to be a calling card for all organizations.” In following in the footsteps of


Lengfeld, Gonzalez also serves as a liaison for United Veterans Services- Swing Club, a golf rehabilitation program for veterans. Founded by Lengfeld, the


program brings veterans, some of whom have never played golf, to the Golf Club at Moffett Field to play a par-3 9-hole course as part of their therapy. Veterans who are sight-impaired can even participate in putting contests. “The veterans who have never


played golf, they’re hooked by the end of the day,” said Gonzalez, a retired USAR Master Sergeant herself. “Our volunteers love playing with them. It’s a really great thing.” So too, are people like Julie


Gonzalez. –J.S.


The PWGA has been supporting women amateur golfers playing public and semi-private courses in Northern California since 1947. Membership is available via a public or semi-private facility hosting a PWGA club, or through a PWGA Associate Club or eClub. Learn more about the PWGA by visiting GolfPWGA.org.


66 / NCGA.ORG / SPRING 2016


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76