2022 Middle Atlantic PGA Awards Recipients

Each year the MAPGA recognizes its most outstanding PGA Professionals and amateurs in the Middle Atlantic region for exemplary contributions to the PGA and the game of golf

Andy Weissinger, PGA, the General Manager at Eaglewood Golf Course located at Langley Air Force Base, in Hampton, Va., is the Middle Atlantic PGA’s – PGA Professional of the Year. This is the highest honor paid to a PGA Professional, and it is based on overall performance, level of service to the MAPGA, leadership ability, promotion of the game of golf, image as a PGA Professional and ability to inspire fellow professionals, among other criteria. 

A native of Norfolk, Va., and a graduate of Liberty University, Weissinger is a dedicated PGA Member who currently serves as MAPGA President and has held numerous leadership positions within the section. Throughout his career, he has held various high-profile Head PGA Golf Professional positions at facilities throughout the Middle Atlantic region and has served in his current position as General Manager at Eaglewood Golf Course for the past nine years. 

Elected to PGA Membership in 2001, Weissinger has become an accomplished teacher and business leader, and has earned many awards and accolades, including the PGA of America’s 2009 PGA Patriot Award, which honors a PGA Professional who personifies patriotism through the game of golf, and demonstrates unwavering commitment and dedication to the men and women who have valiantly served and protected the United States of America. Weissinger has also won many section awards, including 2020 MAPGA Merchandiser of the Year – Public Category, 2016 MAPGA Bill Strausbaugh Award, 2011 MAPGA Junior Golf Leader Award, and the 2009 MAPGA Player Development Award, among other distinctions.  

Bernie Najar, PGA, the Director of Instruction at Caves Valley Golf Club, in Owings Mills, Md., is the Middle Atlantic PGA’s Teacher & Coach of the Year.  This award is presented for excellence in golf instruction along with overall performance as a PGA Professional. It recognizes an individual’s impact on teaching and golf instruction, involvement in junior golf activities, innovative contributions to golf instruction and articles published, among other criteria. 

A native of Bethesda, Md., and a graduate of American University, Najar is recognized as one of the top instructors in both the Baltimore-Washington D.C. area and the nation. In fact, he is ranked as one of Golf Digest’s 50 Best Teachers, and the No. 1 Teacher in Maryland, as well as Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Teachers. A decorated PGA Professional, he is a two-time winner of both of the Middle Atlantic PGA Section’s top teaching honors, including Teacher of the Year in 2004 and 2014, and the Player Development Award in 2011 and 2012. 

Elected to PGA Membership in 1998, Najar has taught students at every level of the game, from beginners to aspiring tour players. His students have gone on to earn dozens of Division I golf scholarships and have won numerous club championships across the Middle Atlantic. In 2021 Najar became a PGA Master Professional, which is the highest educational designation a PGA Member can obtain and recognizes individuals who have made a significant effort to improve as golf professionals and maintain the highest degree of excellence for themselves and their operations.

Scott Graber, PGA, the Head Golf Professional at the Federal Club in Glen Allen, Va., is the 2022 recipient of the Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Bill Strausbaugh Award, which is presented to a PGA Professional for outstanding involvement in charitable and community activities; untiring and distinguished service mentoring fellow PGA Professionals, especially in the area of employment and club relations, integrity and character reflecting positivity upon the profession. These criteria reflect the characteristics and qualities that the late Bill Strausbaugh possessed during his lifetime as a PGA Professional and his service to MAPGA and his community.

John Scott Rattan, PGA, the Teaching Professional at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) PGA Professional Development Award, which bestows special recognition on a PGA Professional for outstanding service and contributions to developing and improving educational opportunities for fellow PGA Professionals. Additionally, contributions to PGA and MAPGA education programs and inclination for continuing contributions and assistance are additional criteria considered for this award.

Shaun Strand, PGA, the General Manager and Director of Golf Operations at Reston National in Reston, Va., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Player Development Award, which bestows special recognition on a PGA Professional for exemplary contributions and achievements in the area of player development and for extraordinary efforts in conducting and/or supporting growth of the game initiatives, as well as leadership commitment at the section and national levels, and the impact made at his/her own facility.

Gabby Miller, PGA, the Assistant Golf Professional/Junior Golf Coordinator at the University of Maryland Golf Course in College Park, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Youth Player Development Award, which recognizes a PGA Professional who is a leader in junior golf, reflects the ideals and qualities that juniors can emulate and provides opportunities for juniors to learn and play golf. Contributions to the MAPGA and PGA junior programs and involvement in the promotion and development of junior golf at the facility and community level are additional criteria considered for this award.

MERCHANDISER OF THE YEAR (PRIVATE FACILITIES)

David Grossman, PGA, the Head Golf Professional at Gibson Island Club in Annapolis, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Merchandiser of the Year Award for Private Facilities. This honor recognizes PGA Professionals who have demonstrated superior skills as merchandisers in the promotion of golf. It is awarded for excellence in golf shop operations in three categories: private, resort and public/municipal/military/semi-private. Candidates are judged on merchandising performance, details and innovation, displays, merchandising techniques, inventory mix, shop operations, merchandising philosophy, and staff training.

 

Matt Summers, PGA, the Director of Golf at Bulle Rock Golf Course in Havre de Grace, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Merchandiser of the Year Award for Public Facilities. This honor recognizes PGA Professionals who have demonstrated superior skills as merchandisers in the promotion of golf. It is awarded for excellence in golf shop operations in three categories: private, resort and public/municipal/military/semi-private. Candidates are judged on merchandising performance, details and innovation, displays, merchandising techniques, inventory mix, shop operations, merchandising philosophy, and staff training.

John Mlynarski III, PGA, Director of Golf at the Links at Perry Cabin in St. Michaels, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Merchandiser of the Year Award for Resort Facilities. This honor recognizes PGA Professionals who have demonstrated superior skills as merchandisers in the promotion of golf. It is awarded for excellence in golf shop operations in three categories: private, resort and public/municipal/military/semi-private. Candidates are judged on merchandising performance, details and innovation, displays, merchandising techniques, inventory mix, shop operations, merchandising philosophy, and staff training.

Shannon McKew, PGA, the Assistant Golf Professional at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm In Rockville, Md., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Assistant PGA Professional of the Year Award, which bestows special recognition on an Assistant PGA Professional for distinguished service to his/her peers and the MAPGA and in his/her commitment to improving opportunities for fellow assistants in the MAPGA.

 

 

 

Giff Breed, President of Pros, Incorporated and owner of Independence GC in Richmond, Va., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) David Wortman Citizen of the Year Award, which recognizes an outstanding amateur or amateurs whose contributions to the MAPGA include the promotion of golf, promotion of the MAPGA and PGA Professionals, and recognition by the MAPGA and business community as a leader in his/her field.

Scott Van Pelt, popular American Sportscaster and host of ESPN’s “Sportscenter with Scott Van Pelt,” is the Recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Earle Hellen Sports Media Award, which honors an outstanding individual in the field of journalism for exemplary contributions to the section with regard to the promotion of golf, promotion of the MAPGA and PGA Professionals, based on scope and distribution, quality and content of media coverage and recognition as an outstanding journalist by his/her peers.

George West, President of GW Golf Sales in Glen Allen, Va., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) Salesperson of the Year Award, which honors a golf salesperson in the region for outstanding service, support and dedication to the members and apprentices of the MAPGA.

Glen Pierce, Director of Golf at Heron Ridge GC and Virginia Beach National GC, in Virginia Beach, Va., is the recipient of the 2022 Middle Atlantic PGA’s (MAPGA) President’s Award, which is personally selected by the Section President. Glen’s work on behalf of National MS Society, personally raising over $750,000, was a highlighting factor. Glen was diagnosed with MS in 2006 and continues to work for his own health and those of others.