Royal Oak golf director is Professional of the Year.
Ken Dube is Pro of the Year.
Kenneth Dube, the PGA of South Africa Professional of the Year for 2018, is the first black professional to achieve the honour. Dube is golf director at Royal Oak Golf Club in Brakpan, Gauteng, where he runs his own golf academy with 70 students. His prize includes the use of a Mercedes Benz C-180 for a year.
Dube has spent his entire PGA career working in Ekurhuleni, initially as the club pro at Springs Country Club from 2000 onwards after serving his PGA apprenticeship at Country Club Johannesburg under Peter Nicholls. He also received the PGA Club Professional Award.
“Kenneth has made an invaluable contribution to the PGA in his 18 years as a member,” said Chief Executive Ivano Ficalbi. “He was on the Board of Directors in 20032004 and has served for many years on the Gauteng Central PGA Committee. He’s an active member, playing in every national and regional pro-am he can. He has won the national Order of Merit on a few occasions.”
The 48-year-old Dube first made headlines in 2003 when he became the first black professional to win the national Club Pro Championship. At Dainfern he was seven-under-par over 54 holes to beat Steve Shearer, Gavan Levenson and Kevin Stone. Dube was introduced to golf in 1992 after being employed at Roger Manning’s golf shop at Huddle Park, and soon taught himself to play.
San Lameer’s Meyer du Toit received the PGA Management Award, recognising his work on the KZN South Coast with the Mark McNulty Junior Golf Foundation and the hosting of several junior events at San Lameer.
John Dickson, based at The Els Club Copperleaf in Gauteng, won the Coach of the Year award for the third time in his career in recognition of his continued passion in over 20 years of teaching.
Michael Balderstone was named Entrepreneur of the Year for the phenomenal growth of The Golf School of Excellence – Former Sunshine Tour player and university graduate Sean Farrell received the PGA’s Apprentice of the Year award. Farrell studied marketing management at Virginia Tech University (USA) and played in three world amateur championships for Zimbabwe. He started GolfGuys, a “onestop solution” golf management company based in George in the Garden Route that specialises in events, tours and retail. from seven fulltime students when it opened in 2004 to 125 today. With franchises in Johannesburg, Pretoria and Cape Town, it offers a PGA Diploma plus greenkeeping and club management qualifications.
Peter Berman, coach of tour star Branden Grace, received the Grow Golf Award. The owner of Scratch Golf in Knysna, Berman has introduced over 3 000 children in the area to golf, and employs five PGA coaches to run a junior academy.
The awards evening at Royal Johannesburg & Kensington saw Denis Hutchinson named PGA Ambassador of the Year in recognition of his 58 years with the association, of which he is also a Master Professional Member, Honorary Life Member and Honorary Life President of the PGA. “Denis adds immense value to the PGA, and epitomises what it means to be a true PGA professional, one who promotes the game he loves and the spirit in which it should be played,” said Ficalbi.
Kenneth Dube receives his award from Louis Destroo, PGA vice chairman.