2003 Inductee Biographies

Roger_Cleveland_thumbROGER CLEVELAND – Anyone who has ever missed a green in regulation has benefited from the technological expertise that Roger Cleveland has provided to the game through his innovative wedges.

A Long Beach Poly and USC golfer, Roger began tinkering with club design and founded the Cleveland Golf Company in 1979. The company’s forte at the time was building replicas of the famous woods and irons of the 1940s and 50s. He sold the company to Rosignol in 1990, but it is still one of the major manufacturers and innovators in the game.

Roger’s knowledge was missed after he sold Cleveland, so he came back to work as the Chief of Golf Club Design for Calloway, a position he still holds, and his knowledge of club design and technology has kept him involved in the discussions and decisions the USGA is continually undertaking to balance skill and technology in the game.
Read an interview with Roger here >>

 

Monty_Blodgett_thumbMONTY BLODGETT – After an apprenticeship at Lakewood CC, Monty Blodgett was hired as the Head Golf Professional at Virginia CC on January 1, 1965.  During his nearly 5 years at Virginia, he played extensively with the members and was extremely popular.  In 1970, Monty made the decision to take over the concession at the relatively new municipally owned El Dorado Park GC from that course’s original professional, Don Willis. 

While at El Dorado, Monty teamed with fellow Hall of Fame member Doug Ives, Dick Chalk and others to create the Queen Mary Open, which was originally played at El Dorado and Recreation Park, but eventually became a staple at El Dorado.  Monty served as the Head Professional at El Dorado for a dozen years, until deciding not to re-bid on the concession. 

Along with being a fine player, Monty was always an exceptional instructor and after leaving El Dorado, he hung up a teaching shingle at the Newport Beach CC and continued giving lessons to not only the NBCC members, but others who sought out his expert eye.

 

Shirley_Johnston_thumbSHIRLEY JOHNSTON – A member of the Long Beach Women’s Golf Clubs since 1981, Shirley has been a dominant player as well as a loyal volunteer. Her first title at Recreation Park happened the first year she was a member, and she has totaled over 30 Club Championships at the three courses during her playing career.

Shirley has served on the Boards of Directors at both Skylinks and El Dorado for over two decades, serving in almost every major capacity, including President. She was appointed to the Municipal Golf Commission in 2007 as the representative of the El Dorado Women’s Golf Club.

 

Bud_Lorbeer_thumbWILBUR "BUD" LORBEER – Bud partnered with Frank Vessels in 1958 to oversee the building and operation of Heartwell Park Golf Course. He eventually became the sole-concessionaire at Heartwell, and operated the course and restaurant until 1986.

Bud also won both the course and food concessions at El Dorado, and operated the Long Beach Starter Services, which was the City’s first experience in contracting out previously City-staffed services in 1981.

Throughout his tenure as the operator of both courses (and he operated others in the area including Bellflower’s Gene List and Whittier Narrows) Bud was a champion of growing the game for women, and particularly junior golfers, including underwriting the original Heartwell Junior Golf Program in the mid 1970s.