Vangellow honored as a teacher by LPGA after more than 30 years
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Aug. 24, 2021 – Deb Vangellow, an LPGA Master Professional and Director of Golf Instruction at Riverbend Country Club in Houston, Texas, joins an elite group of colleagues as recipients of the Ellen Griffin 2021 Rolex Award.
The Ellen Griffin Rolex Award, created in 1989 by LPGA Professionals membership to honor the late teacher Ellen Griffin, recognizes a person, male or female, who has made an important contribution to golf instruction and Griffin’s spirit, Love and devotion to. mimics students, teachers, teaching skills, and the game of golf.
“I am very excited to be the 2021 LPGA Ellen Griffin Award Winner. I didn’t know Ellen personally, but I have many friends who shared their inspiring stories about the great golf education program she ran at The Farm in Greensboro, North Carolina, ”said Vangellow. “Golf was her subject, but she taught the people. For Ellen, the frustrations of golf were always overcome by having fun. This is exactly what was very helpful to the wonderful peer group that nominated me for this award. These special LPGA members, many of whom are on this great list of winners, are dear friends who I have been fantastically fortunate to work with on our LPGA apprenticeship program. I am so grateful for their guidance and support and I appreciate the 30+ years we have had together. Forever friends, definitely! Thank you for this award. I will cherish it forever and will fondly remember Ellen Griffin’s excellent golf lessons. “
LPGA Master Professional / PGA Honorary Director Vangellow holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Science in Health / Physical Education / Coaching and Educational Leadership / Psychology from the University of Northern Iowa and Miami (Ohio) University, respectively. Vangellow, a multi-athlete, scholar, captain, and postman in soccer and athletics, chose to devote her career path to becoming a top golf instructor. Your experiences reflect this endeavor.
After holding various positions in higher education, Vangellow coached Division I college golf at the University of Northern Iowa and led the American Junior Team that traveled to Europe in 1996 as part of the International Sport for Understanding Program. In 1997, Vangellow received the University of Northern Iowa Young Alumni Award and was LPGA Central Section Teacher of the Year three times in 2002, 2009 and 2012. She was also named LPGA National Teacher of the Year in 2012. Vangellow was recently inducted into the UNI Athletics Hall of Fame, the UNI School of HPELS Hall of Excellence, and the Fairport High School Hall of Fame.
In addition to teaching male, female, senior and junior golfers of all skill levels individually and in groups at Riverbend Country Club, Vangellow was the first National Vice President for LPGA Professionals Membership and National President-Elect. She was a long-time senior instructor in the LPGA Global Education Program, the industry-leading teacher training program for golf professionals in the United States and Korea, and is a US Kids Golf Master Teacher. In 2016, she joined the Callaway Golf Company team as a Master Staff Professional, promoting her Women’s Equipment Line.
“To receive this award is an incredible honor, especially to be among so many previous awardees I call friends and mentors,” added Vangellow. “I stand on the shoulders of these people without a doubt and feel happy to do what I am allowed to do and for the people I met along the way. I am so grateful for this recognition. Finally, many thanks to Rolex and the LPGA. “
Previous recipients of the Ellen Griffin Rolex Award include: Peggy Kirk Bell, 1989; Linda Handwerk, 1990; Shirley Englehorn, 1991; Harvey Penick, 1992; Goldie Bateson, 1993; Carol Clark Johnson, 1994; Joanne Winter, 1995; Ann Casey-Johnstone, 1996; Dr. DeDe Owens, 1997; Shirley Spork, 1998; Betty Hicks, 1999; Gary Wiren, 2000; Penny Zavichas, 2001; Annette Thompson, 2002; Dr. Barbara B. Smith, 2003; Marjorie Burns, 2004; Pat Lange, 2005; Donna White, 2006; Betsy Cullen, 2007; Lynn Marriott, 2008; Kay McMahon, 2009; Mary Beth McGirr, 2010; Dr. Debbie Crews, 2011; Dr. Betsy Clark, 2012; Kathy Murphy, 2013; Kerry Graham, 2014; Dana Rader, 2015; Pia Nilsson, 2016; Sandy LaBauve, 2017; Jane Frost, 2018; Nancy Quarcelino, 2019; and Renee Powell, 2020.