Brian Riddle, Head Golf Professional at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, has been named the 2020 Golf Professional of the Year by the American Junior Golf Association. This award honors a golf professional who displays unwavering support of the AJGA and junior golf by creating a memorable tournament experience for players, families, staff and volunteers.
It's an honor to be selected as the Golf Professional of the Year," TPC Sawgrass Head Golf Professional Brian Riddle said. "I've enjoyed working with the AJGA for the past ten Junior PLAYERS Championships in some capacity. The organization is top notch and the events are organized, professional and seamless."
Each year, the AJGA presents awards to the tournaments with the best individual hospitality, Junior-Am Fundraising Tournament, charitable giving and volunteer base. Awards are also given to the events with engaged media and social media participation. Finally, the AJGA recognizes the year’s most outstanding golf professional, superintendent and golf course executive, as well as the most game changing event, best new event, best AJGA Preview Series tournament, best AJGA Junior All-Star Series tournament, best Invitational and overall tournament of the year. Tournament awards for the 2020 season will be presented on-site at the 2021 tournament.
Riddle has been involved with The Junior PLAYERS Championship at TPC Sawgrass for almost ten years in some capacity. Without his dedication to the event each year, one of the strongest junior golf tournaments in the world wouldn’t have the same world-class feel. Each year Riddle not only manages the golf course and TPC Sawgrass logistics, but he also contributes to the tournament in many other ways. He helps secure teams for the Junior-Am Fundraising Tournament which helps create tournament proceeds that are donated back to local charities. Riddle's also involved in finding private housing for AJGA staff members and players who are traveling alone.
"This award is a great representation of what this course can provide," Riddle said. "The AJGA hosts over a hundred events throughout the season, across the country. To be selected to receive this is amazing and humbling and certainly the highlight of my career."
The tournament has seen its share of weather and other obstacles over the years, but each time Riddle is there to help navigate and create a plan to make sure the tournament experience is the best it can be. Riddle's contributions have touched every aspect of the tournament over the past five years. From managing food and beverage to helping with logistics behind the scenes, there isn’t a part of the event that isn’t enriched by his contributions.
“TPC Sawgrass has an incredible history with the AJGA and Brian is the latest in a long line of really great people that we work with,” said AJGA Senior Regional Director, Florida, Adam Rogers. “His dedication to the event and to making the tournament the best it can be is second to none. We are so thankful to have him on the team for this event and it wouldn’t be what it is today without him.”
Riddle becomes the third Golf Professional at TPC Sawgrass to earn the Golf Professional of the Year Award, as his predecessors Matt Borocz (2014) and Billy Dettlaff (2007) were both honored with the award during their tenure. In 2012, then TPC Sawgrass General Manager, Bill Hughes, received the Golf Course Executive of the Year award and in 2008 The Junior PLAYERS Championship received the Invitational of the Year Award.
The Junior PLAYERS Championship is being contested at TPC Sawgrass, September 2-5, 2021. For more information on this award or the tournament, please contact Tim Jackman (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the AJGA Communications Department.