Barry, Tom (2014)

About Barry, Tom (2014)

Jefferson Lakeside Country Club, Richmond, Virginia

Tom Barry’s unparalleled service and contributions to the Middle Atlantic PGA and the PGA of America span over thirty years.  For that he is honored with MAPGA Hall of Fame recognition.   Since assuming the Head PGA Professional position at the Jefferson-Lakeside Club in 1983, the MAPGA recognized his excellence and dedication with numerous awards, most notably the Horton Smith Award three times: 1989, 2000, and 2008 for excellence in PGA member education; the President’s Award in 1990; the Bill Strausbaugh Award in 1992 for service to fellow members in employment and club relations; and the MAPGA Professional of the Year Award in 1994.  In 2012, the Virginia State Golf Association acknowledged him with the “Service to the Game” award.
Additionally, within the Section’s Virginia and then Southern Chapter, Tom Barry held the Director-at-Large position for of the Virginia Chapter in 1987 and 1988, served as Secretary of the Southern Chapter for three years between 1990 and 1992, and the Presidency of the Southern Chapter for three years between 1993 and 1995, and as the Honorary President of that Chapter in 1996.  As a Committee member, he has held seats on both the Membership Committee and Club Relations & Employment Committee for some fifteen years.

Furthermore, over the years Tom has become well known for his Rules of Golf expertise.  After attending many PGA\USGA rules workshops, and continuing to support the Section as an on-the-course rules official, he became the “go to guy” as many colleagues and even MAPGA staff members call him to confirm or ask for clarity on a ruling.   As well, and of considerable importance, since 1990 he is one of the core teachers in MAPGA\VSGA in Rules of Golf program in Virginia that MAPGA Honorary member Clyde Luther originally developed.

Originally from Waterbury, Connecticut, Tom was the fifth of eight children reared by Joe and Maryalice Barry, born on October 24, 1952.  As a youngster the family relocated to Chicago Heights, Illinois.  His golf career began at a local nine-hole venue, Cherry Hills Golf Course, playing alongside his father’s watchful eye just after he had turned nine-years old.  At age 13, he joined the caddie ranks, his first golf-related job.  From there on out, he worked every summer at the golf course, then becoming the shop assistant before turning professional in 1973.

Tom elected to PGA membership in September 1979.  Flossmoor Country Club employed him as an Assistant Golf Professional for seven years, from 1973 until 1980.  From there Tom’s career moved to the Head PGA Professional ranks at Oregon Golf Club in Oregon, Illinois in 1981 and 1982.   Since 1983 Tom Barry has faithfully served the Jefferson Lakeside Club as their Head PGA Professional.

While Tom was still a young man, David Ogilvie III, Head PGA Professional at Flossmoor Country Club in Flossmoor, Illinois, won over his esteem to such as extent that it subsequently influenced his decision to make the golf business a career.  Tom says that more than anything else that Ogilvie stressed the importance of professionalism and demonstrating a gentleman’s persona at all times.   David Ogilvie himself ultimately received the PGA of America “Professional of the Year” award in 1986.  Interestingly enough, David Ogilvie’s father held the Head PGA Professional position at Jefferson Lakeside for some fourteen years, 1964 – 1978.

Tom and his wife Michelle Hoffmann were married in 1990.  He says that there is no way he would have achieved any success in the golf business without her support and encouragement.