BEVERLY “BEV” BRINES – Bev was a retired US Air Force nurse and schoolteacher, but was NOT a retired person.
After taking a job as a starter at Heartwell Park GC in 1987, she founded the Long Beach Junior Golf Association in 1991, with the goal of encouraging kids of all backgrounds to take up the sport. In the program’s first year, 33 kids signed up, and with her hard work and dedication, the program grew to as many as 800 kids (ages 7 to 17) in 1996.
In 1993 she began a caddie program at Old Ranch CC in Seal Beach that used kids from the LB JGA, and in 1995 Bev was honored with an article in Sports Illustrated that told of the success of the program.
JANE LANGE BURNSED – Jane started her golf career as a junior in 1945 under the supervision of fellow Hall of Famer George Lake. Jane won the 1953 LA City Junior Championship, the 1959 LA City Women’s Championship and was a 4-time Long Beach City Women’s Champion (1955, 1957, 1965 and 1972).
Jane also was the Club Champion of the Recreation Park Women’s Club eight times. She was voted the Amateur Golfer of the Year for the City of Long Beach in 1954 and 55; the only woman to ever receive that honor.
Jane turned professional in 1976 and is still a member of the LPGA. She was the Head Golf Professional of the California CC in Whittier from 1978 to 1988, then she transferred her shingle to the Virginia CC, where she gave lessons for another 10 years.
THOMAS F. CROSBY – Tom was a life-long golfer and enthusiastic supporter of the game. Long an advocate of junior golfers, when he was appointed to the City’s Municipal Golf Commission in 1975, he was chosen to manage the Long Beach Junior Golf Championship at Recreation Park and Little Rec. He ran that event until 1991, when it became part of the Long Beach Golf Festival. He remained active in the tournament until his death in 1993, when the tournament was renamed The Tom Crosby Memorial Junior Championship. Tom finished his career on the Golf Commission by serving as its Chairman from 1981-1984.
He also played for another Long Beach Golf Hall of Fame member, Del Walker, at Long Beach State before turning professional in 1990. He won the 1990 Long Beach Open with wife Wendy as caddie, about one month before their first daughter, Chelsea was born. Paul won the 1992 Ben Hogan Yuma Open and successfully earned his Tour Card that same year. He was a member of the PGA Tour until he turned 50 and “graduated” to the PGA Tour Champions.
He won Arnold Palmer’s Bay Hill Invitational in 1996 and the Sony Open of Hawaii in 2007. Paul has the distinction of shooting a 61 at three of the golf courses in Long Beach: Recreation Park GC, El Dorado Park GC and The Virginia CC. In 2010, he became the 4th player in the history of the PGA Tour to shoot a 59, in the opening round of the John Deere Classic. He also served as an Assistant Ryder Cup Captain in 2010 in Wales. In 2008, wearing a Long Beach State “Dirtbags” hat he made a valiant run at The Players CHampionship, before eventually falling to Sergio Garcia in a playoff.
As a member of the PGA Tour Champions, he has won 3 events as of the summer of 2017, including the season-ending Charles Schwab Championship in 2016.
He has honorary lifetime memberships in both the El Dorado Park and Recreation Park Men’s Golf Clubs, and received the first honorary membership that Virginia CC ever granted.
MARLENE BAUER HAGGE – Born in South Dakota, Marlene took up golf at the tender age of 3, under the watchful eye of her father, Dave. The family moved to Long Beach in 1941, and she dominated junior golf both locally and nationally including wins the Long Beach Boys Junior Championship at age 10, and the LA City Women’s Championship at age 13. That same year she won the Long Beach Women’s Amateur Championship and became the youngest player to make the cut in the US Women’s Open, ultimately finishing 8th.
At the age of 15, she won the US Junior Girls and became the youngest athlete to ever be named AP Athlete of the Year. She turned professional at the age of 16, and for the next 20 years, she was among the LPGA’s top money winners. She was a Charter and Founding Member of the LPGA, and won her first Tour event at the age of 18. She finished her career with 26 victories, and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2002.
BETTY HICKS – Betty took up the game in 1937 during a freshman golf class at Long Beach City College and from there became one of the game’s “great golfers”. How great, you ask? She once carded a 2-under par 69 at venerable Riviera CC…from the men’s tees!
During her career she won 20 National Championships including the 194` US Women’s Amateur. Her first victory was the Long Beach Women’s City Championship, which she one only one year after first taking up the game. She was a founding member of the Women’s Professional Golfers Association and the LPGA.
She served as the Head Golf Professional at Los Coyotes CC in Buena Park form 1957-59 and was a teaching pro at Recreation Park 18 (1941-42), Virginia CC (1943-45) and Lakewood CC (1949-53). Betty wrote many books and articles about golf and in 1995 was inducted into the Women’s Sports Federation’s International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame in New York City. She is also a member of the California Golf Writer’s Hall of Fame and in 1965 was named “one of the Fifty Outstanding Citizens of Long Beach”.
ADELINE “AD” JONES – “Golf wouldn’t be golf in Long Beach without Ad” according to many of the members of the Long Beach Women’s Golf Clubs. A member of the Recreation Park Women’s Golf Club from its inception in 1928 until her death in 1998. Even at the age of 90, when she was inducted in the Long Beach Golf Hall of Fame, she would play (and walk!) 18 holes at Big Rec on Tuesdays and 9 holes at The South Course on Fridays.
“You meet the most beautiful people on the golf course” she liked to say.
GEORGE LAKE – George Lake was the Head Golf Professional at Recreation Park Golf Course for nearly half a century. During his tenure, he founded and administered one of the largest junior golf programs in the United States and brought several professional golf tournaments to Long Beach, including the “original” Long Beach Open, which was a Tour stop in 1949.
He helped fund raise for and build the 9-hole course at the LB Vets Hospital and gave lessons to the vets that went through rehabilitation there. His inspiration and dedication to others and to the game were recognized when he received the first ever Golf Professional of the Year Award from the So Cal PGA, and was later in the first class of inductees into the SCPGA Hall of Fame.
His son Brian said upon his induction to the LB Golf Hall of Fame: “George Lake, through his commitment to helping others, was responsible for introducing the game of golf to thousands of children and adults, many of whom went on to become top amateur and professional competitors. He, however, was just as proud of those who had just learned a game they could enjoy for a lifetime.”
FRANK C. NEWELL, JR. – Frank Newell was the head golf professional at Skylinks GC from its opening in 1959 until American Golf Corporation took over the City Golf Operations in 1984. During his 25-year tenure, he promoted junior programs and was one of the most popular and respected teaching pros in Southern California. Even 19 years after his passing, his son Frank has people who tell him that they took their first lesson from, or were introduced to the game by his father.
A graduate of Poly HS, Long Beach City College and UCLA, he compiled a distinguished amateur record in the 1930’s and 40s. While at LBCC, he won the Junior College Intercollegiate and Southern California Intercollegiate, which was open to all 2- and 4-year colleges, thus the Newell-led LBCC squad beat all of the 4-year colleges! While competing for UCLA, he won the Pacific Coast Intercollegiate and was the first-ever Bruin golfer selected to play in the NCAA Championship.
In 1935 Newell represented Long Beach in the US Public Links Championship along with fellow Hall of Fame member Del Walker, and in 1942 he won the Long Beach Men’s City Championship, played at Match Play. He competed briefly on the PGA Tour in 1953, playing with such greats as Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, Cary Middlecoff and Lloyd Mangrum.
He was a class “A” PGA Member for over 40 years and was a Lifetime Member of the SoCal PGA. After his retirement in 1984 he served as a golf instructor for several cruise lines and was a founding member of PGA West. He was inducted into the Long Beach City College Hall of Champions, and lived in Long Beach until his death in 1990.
His son Frank said upon his induction into the inaugural Hall of Fame class: “As a father, teacher and employer, he instilled in me a love for the game, integrity and a strong work ethic. Many of his employees are successful businesspeople and professionals who often remind me of the lessons they learned from my dad.”
MILDRED M. “MILLIE” STANLEY – A native Hawaiian who moved to California in the late 1950’s, Millie won over 75 Championships in 5 different decades (1950s-1990s).
Locally, she won three Long Beach Women’s City Championships (1971, 73-74) and coached the Long Beach State women’s golf team from 1980-84. During her coaching stint, she orchestrated the raffling of a donated Mercedes Benz to generate $100,000 that was used to both fund the team and create the Mildred Stanley Golf Endowment.
She was the only woman to play golf for a service team (US Navy) in the 1950s, and has been inducted into numerous Halls of Fame, including 49er Athletics, San Diego Golf and National Golf Coaches. Millie also served on the Tournament Committees for the US Women’s Mid Amateur and Women’s Trans National, and in 1993 she received the WSCGA’s Distinguished Service Award “in recognition of outstanding accomplishments that have furthered the game of golf in the interest of women.
DELBERT “DEL” WALKER – During the City of Long Beach’s Centennial in 1988, the Press Telegram named Del Walker the city’s “Golfer of the Century”. Del (or “Coach” as everyone simply called him) excelled in many golfing capacities, including as a great player, an SCGA Committeeman and coach at Long Beach State.
Coach took up the game in 1927, after reading a book by Harry Vardon, and within three years was good enough to make the UCLA golf team, where he never lost a match and won the Southern California Collegiate Championship in his rookie year.
Del was a member of the Virginia CC from 1940 until his death in 2003. Along with winning the Club Championship nine times (the first in 1940 and the last in 1977), he eagled every hole on the course at least one time. He won the Long Beach City Championship (Match Play) four times (1943-44-45 and 54) and the City Stroke Play Championship twice (1949 and 50). He also won the Western Publinx Championship in 1939 and several International Seniors Championships.
He came out of retirement in 1982 to coach the Long Beach State men’s golf team “for one year” and ended up doing it for 12. He was the Big West Coach of the Year in 1982, 1986 and 1994.
MARTHA “MARTY” WALKER – Marty was an outstanding athlete at Long Beach City College and won many championships during her career. In 1933, she was voted the “Outstanding Woman Athlete” while at City College.
Her professional career was as a teacher, and while teaching English and the blind at Wilson High School, she became the first woman in the history of the CIF to coach a boys team when she began an 11-year stint as the Bruins Head Coach in 1973. In 1984 she came out of retirement to coach the women’s team at Long Beach State, a position she held for 13 years.
Marty was the Club Champion at Virginia CC in 1942 and 1958 and was elected to the Halls of Fame for Wilson HS, Long Beach City College, Long Beach State, the Long Beach Century Club and the California Interscholastic Federation. Her most amazing feat was always considered to be shooting a 78 at Virginia the day her son Jim was born.