PGA/LPGA Professional Renee Powell, the PGA Head Professional at Clearview Golf Club in East Canton, Ohio, has been elected the first at-large director of the PGA of America Board of Directors.
Powell, 72, is a member of the PGA Hall of Fame and serves on the Pro Football Hall of Fame Board of Trustees. She was the second African-American to compete on the LPGA Tour and in 2015 was one of seven women elected the first female honorary members in the 260-year history of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club.
Powell will serve a term through the 2020 PGA Annual Meeting on a board composed of the Association’s president, vice president, secretary, honorary president and 18 directors. The Directors include representatives from each of the PGA’s 14 Districts, two Independent Directors, an at-large Director and a member of the PGA Tour.
The addition of a PGA Member as an at-large director brings additional expertise to the board, balances representation and increases diversity and enables Officers and the Board to recruit and cultivate talent. The at-large PGA board director also will increase Section representation.
PGA of America President Suzy Whaley said that Powell brings “a lifetime of service to golf” in her new position.
“Renee Powell’s selfless contributions to the game of golf have made the Powell name synonymous with inspiring PGA Professionals and the aspiring golfer,” said Whaley. “We are excited about the energy and insight that Renee will bring to our Board.”
In 1996, Powell was the first woman of color elected to PGA Membership, charting a course of service both locally, in the Northern Ohio PGA Section and nationally. At the same time, she helped elevate Clearview Golf Club, the golf course her late father, William Powell, a PGA Hall of Fame member, built in 1946. Clearview is on the National Register of Historic Places.
“I’ve been a PGA Member for 23 years and have witnessed many changes that have moved things forward to make our Association more inclusive. This is a big honor,” said Powell.
She referred to her past association with Whaley, the first woman to hold the PGA’s highest office. “We served on committees together and now to be serving on the PGA board with her as an at-large director – it represents more forward thinking,” Powell said.
“I have been able to travel around the world through golf. Daddy taught me how to play the game and I feel that it’s such a great responsibility and an obligation to give back to society through the sport of golf.”
Powell, the 2003 PGA First Lady of Golf, founded Clearview HOPE in 2011, which became the first year-round golf rehabilitation program for women veterans; she also hosts a men’s PGA HOPE program. In 2018, Powell was the first American to have a residence hall dedicated in her name at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.
In February, the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America bestowed its highest honor on the Powell family, with Renee and brother Larry, Clearview’s superintendent, recipients of the Old Tom Morris Award.