For Immediate Release
Middle Atlantic PGA Section Announces 2022 Special Award Winners Headlined by PGA Golf Professional the Year, Andy Weissinger, and PGA Teacher & Coach of the Year, Bernie Najar
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; Scott Van Pelt, Popular American Sportscaster and Host of ESPN’s “SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt,” Named the Recipient of the MAPGA’s Earle Hellen Sports Media Award for 2022
Stafford, Va. … (January 9, 2023) – The Middle Atlantic Section of the PGA of America (MAPGA) has announced their 14 Special Award Winners for 2022, headlined by PGA Golf Professional the Year, Andy Weissinger, and PGA Teacher & Coach of the Year, Bernie Najar. In addition, Scott Van Pelt, popular American Sportscaster and Host of ESPN’s “SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt,” was named the recipient of the MAPGA’s Earle Hellen Sports Media Award for 2022.
“Each year the MAPGA recognizes its most outstanding PGA Professionals and amateurs in the Middle Atlantic region for their exemplary contributions toward the game of golf and making both the PGA and the MAPGA better Associations,” said Jon Guhl, Executive Director, Middle Atlantic PGA. “In all 14 categories, our award recipients boast track records of excellence in growing the game and inspiring individuals using the great sport of golf.”
2022 MAPGA Awards Recipients
• PGA Professional Of The Year
Andy Weissinger, PGA – General Manager, Eaglewood Golf Course at Langley Air Force Base, Hampton, Va
• PGA Teacher & Coach Of The Year
Bernie Najar, PGA – Director of Instruction, Caves Valley Golf Club, Owings Mills, Md.
• Bill Strausbaugh Award
Scott Graber, PGA – Head Golf Professional, The Federal Club, Glen Allen, Va.
• PGA Professional Development Award
John Scott Rattan, PGA – Teaching Professional, Congressional Country Club, Bethesda, Md.
• Player Development Award
Shaun Strand, PGA – General Manager and Director of Golf Operations, Reston National, Reston, Va.
• Youth Player Development Award
Gabby Miller, PGA – Assistant Golf Professional/Junior Golf Coordinator, University of Maryland Golf Course, College Park, Md.
• Merchandiser Of The Year (Private)
David Grossman, PGA – Head Golf Professional, Gibson Island Club, Annapolis, Md.
• Merchandiser Of The Year (Public)
Matt Summers, PGA – Director of Golf, Bulle Rock Golf Course, Havre de Grace, Md.
• Merchandiser Of The Year (Resort)
John Mlynarski III, PGA – Director of Golf, Links at Perry Cabin, St. Michaels, Md.
• Assistant PGA Professional Of The Year
Shannon Mckew, PGA – Assistant Golf Professional, TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm,
• President’s Award
Glen Pierce, PGA – Director of Golf, Heron Ridge GC & Virginia Beach National GC, Virginia Beach, Va.
• David Wortman Citizen Of The Year
Giff Breed, President, Pros, Incorporated & Owner, Independence GC, Richmond, Va.
• Earle Hellen Sports Media Award
Scott Van Pelt, American Sportscaster and Host of ESPN’s “SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt.”
• Salesperson Of The Year
George West, GW Golf Sales, Glen Allen, Va.
Highlighting the 2022 MAPGA Award Winners is Andy Weissinger, PGA, General Manager at Eaglewood Golf Course located at Langley Air Force Base, Hampton, Va., who is the 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.
Joining Weissinger in headlining the 2022 Class of MAPGA Award Winners is Bernie Najar, PGA, the Director of Instruction at Caves Valley Golf Club, in Owings Mills, Md., who is the PGA Teacher & Coach Of The Year, which 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.
For bios of all 2022 MAPGA Awards recipients, click here. The 2022 MAPGA Awards recipients will be honored on Sunday, February 19th at the MAPGA Hall of Fame & Awards Banquet, at Lansdowne Resort & Spa, in Leesburg, Va. For more information on the Middle Atlantic PGA, visit www.mapga.com.
About Middle Atlantic PGA
The Middle Atlantic PGA Section (MAPGA), located in Stafford, Virginia, is one of 41 Sections of The Professional Golfers’ Association of America (PGA), headquartered in Frisco, Texas. The MAPGA has been a part of The PGA since 1925 and consists of over 1,100 members and apprentices in Maryland, Virginia, the District of Columbia and small portions of Pennsylvania and West Virginia. There are over 900,000 golfers playing more than 16.5 million rounds of golf a season in the Middle Atlantic region. As player development remains a driving force in the golf industry, the MAPGA provides a wide variety of programs and assistance to support its members who teach the game, promote goodwill and share the game’s values to their golfing customers and their communities in general. Locally, MAPGA Professionals assist in raising over $6 million annually for charities.
Media Contact: Jared Minski, firstname.lastname@example.org or 732-546-4325.