Golf Course Architecture - Issue 63, January 2021

55 professional goals now is to recruit women to stand upon my shoulders before another generation adds to the gap, and that is why I am enthusiastically advocating for recruitment of women in the field of golf course architecture.” Kristine Kerr of New Zealand-based Kura Golf Design, one of the very few women who has her name on a new course design, agrees with this suggestion. “People need either to be drawn to a profession or fall into it… golf course design is not widely known of as a profession,” she says. “Opportunities need to be there! In terms of global golf projects and major new developments, it is very cyclical at the whim of economies and golf course design is not always in high demand. I ‘fell into it’ at a time when golf development was Ida Dixon Perhaps the first female golf course architect in the world, Dixon designed Springhaven Club in Philadelphia in 1904. She went on to serve as president of the Women’s Golf Association of Philadelphia until her death in 1916. May Dunn The daughter of Scottish golfer, clubmaker and course architect Thomas Dunn, May (above, left) moved to the US in 1915 where she became the country’s first female golf professional. She founded Reno Golf Club and designed the city’s first course. She went on to also design and manage the nearby Tahoe Tavern Links, now the Tahoe City Golf Course. Marion Hollins A prolific sportswoman, Marion Hollins (above, centre) won the US Women’s Amateur in 1921 and was captain of the first US Curtis Cup team in 1932. Hollins was also the visionary behind the Women’s National Golf and Tennis Club on Long Island and, as a golf course developer, she hired Alister Mackenzie to design both Cypress Point and Pasatiempo and introduced him to Bobby Jones for the layout of Augusta National. MacKenzie sought and valued Hollins’ input into the designs; he credited her for the sixteenth at Cypress Point and insisted that she inspect Augusta National in his absence, writing: “I do not know any man who has sounder ideas.” Hollins will be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2021. Molly Gourlay, OBE English golfer Molly Gourlay is credited as Britain’s first female golf course architect. Working in partnership with Tom Simpson, her design work includes County Louth and the Old course at Ballybunion. Gourlay also served as chairman and president of the English Ladies’ Golf Association and chairman of the Ladies’ Golf Union. Alice Dye Winner of more than 50 amateur titles and a Curtis Cup player, Alice Dye (above, right) worked alongside husband Pete from the 1950s and throughout their golf design careers. Famously credited with the idea for the seventeenth at TPC Sawgrass, Alice was a strong proponent of multiple teeing areas for women, conceiving and promoting a two tee system for women. She became the American Society of Golf Course Architects’ first female president in 1997. Golf Design’s Pioneering Women Photo: Rolling Green Photography/Ken May Photos: