John Inglis

John Inglis was slight of stature but had an incredible role in the development and evolution of the Metropolitan PGA Section. Inglis was a charter member of the PGA as well as the Golf Course Superintendents Association. He served as the head professional at Fairview Country Club for over 50 years and was the President of the Metropolitan PGA for over 30 years, from 1928 until 1959. While Inglis was noted more for his administrative skills and leadership than his playing, he mentored and helped shape the future of a number of great players in the Met Section including the seven Turnesa brothers, Johnny Farrell and Tony Manero.


Bob Joyce

For over 25 years the head professional at Southampton Golf Club, Bob has served every Section office including the Presidency. He was the District Director and member of the PGA's Executive Committee from 1989 to 1991 during which time he chaired committees that included employment and tournaments. In 1996, Bob ran for PGA Secretary, an office won by Jack Connelly of Philadelphia. His campaign and his entire legacy as a leader was driven by his passion for teaching, playing and promoting the game of golf. Bob was also a mentor to a number of professionals who learned the game on the East End of Long Island, including former PGA Club Professional Player of the Year Bruce Zabriski and current head professionals Tom Holdsworth and Dave Gosiewski. Bob was the 1980 Metropolitan PGA Professional of the Year and in 1993 was nominated by the Section as their Teacher of the Year. He also won the 1992 Sam Snead Award for contributions to golf, the PGA and the Met Section.


Mike Joyce

The long time Huntington Country Club head professional followed an outstanding career locally with an impressive decade on the PGA Senior Tour. Joyce won the 1981 Treiber Memorial, the 1982 Long Island Open and the 1983 Long Island PGA Championship. Prior to moving onto the Senior Tour, he captured another LIPGA title in 1988 and the 1989 Met PGA Seniors Championship. His Senior Tour career was launched in 1989, but really thrived in 1991 through 1996 when he averaged almost 20 events a year including his two most successful seasons, 1992 and 1993 when he played 29 and 36 events respectively. In 1992 he became a first time winner on the Senior PGA Tour at the GTE Northwest Classic. That year included 4 top 10 finishes and he followed that in 1993 with two more top 10’s. Michael served as head professional at Huntington for 26 years before moving full time to the Senior Tour in the early 90’s.


Tom Joyce

A former Met PGA Player of the Year and the Glen Oaks head professional for more than 20 years, Tom Joyce has been one of the most consistent performers in the history of the Met Section. His 20 appearances in the National Club Pro Championship ranks him first among all professionals while his 67 rounds is the fourth highest in history. A titleholder in the Met PGA Assistants Championship, Long Island Open, Westchester Open, Met PGA Seniors Open and Seniors Championship as well as being a 3 time runner-up in the Met Open, Tom became one of the finest playing senior club professionals in the nation. Since 1990, his first year of eligibility in the Senior Club Pro Championship, Tom won in 1990 and '91, was runner-up in 1993 and '96, finished 4th in 1994 and tied for 19th in 1995. He has also competed in 4 National PGA Championships and 9 Senior PGA Championships with his best showing coming in 1991 when he finished in a tie for 14th. Tom is the youngest of the professional golfing Joyce bothers.​


John Kennedy

John Kennedy’s contributions to the game of golf, the PGA, and the Met Section are innumerable. Kennedy spent the majority of his 45-year career as the Director of Golf at Westchester Country Club, a position that thrust him into a leadership role of one of the largest, most active clubs in the United States while hosting 18 PGA Tour events and the inaugural KPMG Women’s PGA Championship. Kennedy took advantage of his status as a PGA Professional emulated by his peers, making it his mission to elevate the status of the club he served and the golf professionals in the Met Section. Where it is viewed as a career defining moment for a PGA Professional to be recognized for contributions in a specific area, Kennedy has won every major Section award (some multiple times) for impacting all aspects of the golf profession in the Met Section. For his work with education, mentorship, governance, junior golf, military veterans, and so much more, Kennedy was recognized by the Section with: 1983 & 1991 Merchandiser of the Year Awards, 1985, 1988, & 2009 Horton Smith Award, 1997 PGA Professional of the Year Award, 2005 & 2014 Bill Strausbaugh Award, and the 2012 Patriot Award. Additionally, Kennedy was honored by the PGA of America as the National recipient of the: 2010 Horton Smith, 2012 Patriot, and 2017 Bill Strausbaugh Awards. Kennedy’s contributions also included: serving three terms on the Section’s Board of Directors, over 20 years as a member (many as chairman) of the Education Committee, over 20 years as a member of the Employment & Club Relations Committee, host of Junior Golf Schools, annual Girls to the Tee Clinic, as well as a wide variety of events that have supported the Section, women professionals, juniors and various golf related charities and programs. Starting in 2009, Kennedy led a project that amassed a wealth of materials and resources in the creation of the “Head Professional Handbook,” an undertaking intended to assist recently appointed head professionals with the transition to a new position. John is also the author of two books about golf and life lessons that can be learned through the game. In 2014, Westchester Country Club named their newly constructed learning center the John Kennedy Learning Center - a lasting honor for their long time professional.


Darrell Kestner

One of the most popular and successful professionals in Met PGA history, Darrell Kestner has enjoyed success as both a player and a teacher as well as holding one of the area’s most prestigious positions – Director of Golf at Deepdale Golf Club. Darrell was selected the 1997 Met PGA Teacher of the Year and renominated several times for this award on a national basis. He has been honored twice as the National PGA’s Senior Club Professional Player of the Year (2004 and ’05) and won the Met PGA Player of the Year Award 3-times (1994, ’95 and 2003). Among his other career victories are five Met PGA titles, three Met Open Championships, two New York State Opens, the 1994 Dodge Open, three LIPGA’s, two Westchester PGA’s, and two LI Opens. He also won both the Met PGA Assistants Championship and Head Pro title. Nationally he won the 1996 National Club Pro Championship and is a two-time winner of the National Assistants Championship as well as a Hogan Tour stop in the Charley Pride Golf Fiesta. As a senior he has been equally as dominating with four Senior Player of the Year Awards for the Met PGA (2004, ’05, ’08, ‘10) as well as holding every Senior area title. Other top finishes and accomplishments include a tie for 5th in the National Sr. PGA Professional Championship, T-32nd in the 2004 U.S. Senior Open, T-13th at the 2004 Master Card Classic and T-18th at the 2004 SBC Classic on the Champions Tour. Darrell has qualified for eight U.S. Opens & nine PGA Championships, as well as five Senior PGA Championships and one PGA Cup Team.


Willie Klein

For 32 years from 1925 until 1957, Willie Klein served the membership of Wheatley Hills as their head professional. He was a 3 time winner of the Long Island Open including the inaugural in 1922 and then successfully defended that title in 1923. In 1932 he captured the Metropolitan PGA Championship as well. But it was in national championships that his record is perhaps most remarkable. He qualified for 7 National PGA Championships and held a 3-6 record in this match play format. He also qualified for 11 United States Open Championships, making a remarkable 10 cuts and recorded two top 25 finishes. His top finish was a tie for 9th in the 1926 US Open. The New York State Golf Association which was the last of the State associations to be launched in 1923 held their inaugural Open Championship at Onondaga in 1928 and gained notoriety by having Willie Klein as their first champion.


Ted Kroll

Ted Kroll was born in New Hartford, New York. He served in the United States Army during World War II and earned three Purple Hearts after being wounded four times. He began a 34 year PGA Tour career in 1949. He won nine times on the tour, including three wins in 1956, when he topped the money list. That same year he lost the final of the PGA Championship. Kroll played in a total of 16 PGA Championships, 8 at match play and 8 at stroke play, that included a 4th place finish in 1961. He also finished in the top 10 at the US Open in six out of seven years and competed in 14 US Open Championships in total. He also played in 3 Senior Opens (best finish T-8th in 1980) and 17 PGA Senior Championships (with six top 25 finishes). Kroll played on three Ryder Cup teams: 1953, 1955, and 1957, and though he only played in 4 matches, won three times. After his playing career, Kroll succeeded Ron Letellier as the head professional at Cold Spring Country Club.


Ron Letellier

In a career cut tragically short by cancer, Ron Letellier certainly left his mark on the Met Section. With forearms like Popeye and an easygoing style that masked his love to compete, Ron had a brief but impressive playing career. He won the 1971 Met Open Championship at Fresh Meadow Country Club and was runner-up twice at that prestigious event including 1967 when Jerry Courville Sr. topped five area club professionals at Winged Foot (West) and again in 1972 when Don Massengale prevented him from successfully defending his title in a playoff at Stanwich Club. Letellier also qualified for two PGA Championships, making the cut both times. It was at the National Club Pro Championship that he really left his mark. In four events, he enjoyed three top 20 finishes including being tied for 2nd in 1971 to the winner, Sam Snead, and was 4th in 1974 and tied for 17th in 1975. He also played on the victorious 1975 PGA Cup Team in Pinehurst and was 2-0-1. Letellier was the Section Treasurer in the early 70’s while at North Hills Country Club. Shortly after that he moved to Cold Spring CC and was named the Met PGA Professional of the Year in 1976. He was also named the National PGA Professional of the Year in 1976, one of only two Met PGA professionals to win the association’s highest honor.


George Lewis

George Lewis, a native New Yorker, grew up playing junior golf in the Met Section, and after college in Pennsylvania, turned professional in 1958. He served as the assistant to Robert L. (Bob) Watson at Ardsley Country Club, and was elected to PGA membership in 1960. Selected as the head Professional at Leewood Golf Club in 1963, he also played the PGA Tour and the Caribbean Tour for several winters in the early '60s. He won the 1967 Grand Bahama Open, which became a regular PGA Tour event for the next few years. George also played in the 1967 US Open at Baltusrol, scoring 72 in the opening round, just off the lead. In the Met Section, he served on the Board of Directors, and also on the Nominating Committee for many years. In 1978, he was named the Professional of the Year in the Met Section, and was elected as only the 64th PGA Master Professional in 1985 with his landmark thesis, "The Evolution of the Golf Swing".

At the inaugural PGA World Teaching and Coaching Summit in 1988, he was one of the original presenters and in 1996 he was recognized with the Horton Smith Award for his contributions to PGA education. After he retired from Leewood in 1988 after 25 years, he founded and operated Golfiana, which became a leading golf collectible and worldwide sales concern. As the Met PGA Historian for many years, he interviewed and documented many of the veteran and longtime Met area professionals to preserve the rich history of the Section. In 2015, he was selected as the Bill Strausbaugh Award winner for his lifetime contributions to PGA employment, as over a dozen of his former assistants were elevated to head Professional positions. He is still consulted frequently by Section leaders and PGA members on PGA matters and swing theory. He joins a number of his former colleagues, who are already enshrined as legends of the Metropolitan Section.


Carl Lohren

One of the most proficient players ever in the Met Section, Carl Lohren’s small stature belied his gigantic competitive strength and technical knowledge. The University of Maryland product was perhaps better known as a teacher and an author for his book entitled “One Move to Better Golf.” The forward of the book was written by Deane Beman, a student, former PGA and Senior Tour winner and long-time PGA Tour Commissioner. Carl loved to teach and gave seminars around the world and at 14 National PGA Teaching Workshops and Seminars. He was a speaker at both the first PGA Teaching & Coaching Summit in 1988 and at the very first European Teaching Summit in Rome in 1990. His prowess earned him Metropolitan PGA Teacher of the Year honors in 1989 as well as the Horton Smith nomination for the Met Section for educational contributions in 1982. As a player Carl Lohren enjoyed a number of successes including wins at the 1968 New York State PGA and at the 1984 Long Island PGA Championship. He qualified for three US Opens, 1 US Senior Open (he tied for 39th) and 10 National Club Professional Championships. He qualified to play on the PGA Senior (now Champions) Tour in 1990 after a top six finish in the qualifying tournament. Carl was inducted into the Glen Cove Hall of Fame in 1985.


Nelson Long

Nelson Long Jr., second-generation PGA Member, is the son of Nelson Long Sr. who served over 40 years as the Professional of The Homestead's Old Course. The Hot Springs, VA native and member of the Virginia Tech Golf team, Nelson won the 1972 Virginia PGA Open and the 1973 Virginia Intercollegiate, then came to the Met Section as the assistant to Charlie Beverage at Century CC in 1974.

While working at Century, Long quickly became a well-known player and mentor in the section. He won the 1979 Westchester PGA, and claimed Pro-Assistant titles in 1991, 1998, and 2004 partnering with Frank Bensel to record a score of "59". Perhaps the greatest testament to his playing ability and longevity is playing in the 1968 USGA Junior Championship and 2013 USGA Senior Open, 45 years apart! As a mentor, Long has seen three assistants (John Gentile, Darrell Kestner, and Ron McDougal) win PGA Professional Championships, while longtime assistant Frank Bensel won three PGA National Assistant Championships, Rick Meskell won the Met PGA Championship and later became Met PGA President, CJ Reeves won the Met PGA Women's Stroke Play Championship and Met PGA Teacher of the Year, and George Bullock won the Met Open.

Nelson has been honored by his Met PGA peers several times, including: 1999 Teacher of the Year, 2005 Horton Smith Award, 2010 Bill Strausbaugh Award, and 2015 Professional of the Year. He was also recognized nationally, named the PGA of America’s Bill Strausbaugh Award recipient in 2010, with his mentorship ability summed up by his quote: “employees first, customers second.”

Long’s leadership didn’t end with mentoring his staff, he has always been given back to the Met PGA and the golf community. Nelson was integral in the creation of the Met PGA Head Pro Championship and hosted almost every section event, for years he ran a huge Pro Am in support of Dystonia & Parkinson disease, and annually raised significant funds in support of The First Tee, MGA Foundation, Golf Works, and Caddie Scholarship Fund.