Ten golfers will be inducted into the newly created Utah Golf Hall of Fame, which honors men and women who have made outstanding contributions to golf in Utah.
The first class honors five living and five deceased golfers. The biggest names are Johnny Miller and Billy Casper, who both won the U.S. Open and are considered among the greatest golfers ever.Others being honored include three of Utah's living golf legends, Tee Branca, Bill Korns and George Marks.
The five deceased honorees include former U.S. Amateur champion George Von Elm, George Schneiter Sr., Ernie Schneiter Sr., Helen Hoffman Bertagnole and Steve Dunford.
"The quality of the achievements of our initial inductees into the Utah Golf Hall of Fame, shows that Utah has a rich and cherished golf history," said Larry Disera, president of the Utah Golf Foundation.
The records of Miller and Casper are well-documented. They rank among the all-time PGA leaders in tournament victories and money winnings. Both are native Californians who lived in Utah for many years.
Branca has been the head professional at The Country Club in Salt Lake for 47 years, beginning in 1944 and won numerous tournaments locally during his playing days.
Korns won the Utah State Amateur six times, a record that may never be broken and also won several events as a pro.
Marks enters the Hall based on a career of service in golf. He has served as Utah's liaison with the United States Golf Association for 25 years and has been a rules official at the U.S. Open for 28 years.
Among the others: Von Elm defeated Bobby Jones at the U.S. Amateur in 1926 and tied for first in the 1931 U.S. Open; George Schneiter won every major Intermountain tournament, including the Utah Open three times. Ernie Schneiter excelled as a player, a teacher and an architect; Bertagnole won the Utah Women's Amateur nine times and once defeated Babe Didrickson Zaharias in a national tournament; and Dunford helped organize the Utah Golf Association and served Utah golf for many years.
A special induction ceremony is being planned for mid-summer.