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Mike Pape, Chairman

We had another busy but

successful year in the Rules and

Competitions arena in 2016.

We had a good mix of familiar

sites and new places. Weather

played a factor, as always, yet

we were always able to crown a

deserving champion.

Two of our biggest championships, the Iowa

Amateur and Herman Sani Tournament, were

rain-shortened to 36 holes due to massive storms.

We also had some significant delays at the Junior

Amateurs and the U.S. Mid-Amateur qualifier, but in

each and every case, the maintenance crews at our

host facilities did yeoman’s work and got the golf

course playable as quickly as possible. Even when

we have terrific weather (like at our Match Play this

year) the grounds crews deserve loads of credit for

what they do for us each day. They are truly the

unsung heroes in the golfing world, and I want to

personally thank them for everything.

We are truly spoiled in the quality of our host

venues. We worked with some old friends at

Sunnyside, Finkbine, Spirit Hollow, TCI, Ames G&CC,

Lake Panorama, Jester Park, Hyperion Briarwood

and Wakonda. We went back to places we had not

been in a while in Crow Valley and Elmwood and

visited Ellis GC and Urbandale G&CC for the first


One could probably look at our 2016 champions and

think, “the more things change, the more they stay

the same”. But that wasn’t always the case.

Familiar faces certainly captured many titles. Nate

Dunn won the Iowa Amateur for the third time and

his second in three years. Jenny Heinz won her third

straight Women’s Player of the Year award while

Gene Elliott won the Men’s Player of the Year for

the second straight year and fourth overall. He also

captured the Iowa Senior Amateur for the second

time in the last three years. And it was great to see

Jon Brown come back from back surgery to win the

Iowa Mid-Amateur and nearly capture the Player of

the Year award from Elliott. If we had a “Comeback

Player of the Year” award, Brown would no doubt

be my choice!

Many of our championships saw new faces emerge

victorious. Julie Buermann captured the Women’s

Match Play for the first time and Jessie Sindlinger

won her first Iowa Women’s Amateur after coming

so close the past few years. On the men’s side,

Dusty Drenth ‘dusted’ the field at the Match Play,

showing he will be a force in the coming years. And

it’s always great to see the “up-and-comers” at the

Junior Amateurs. This year Lucas Scherf and Karli

Kerrigan showed off their potential in winning the

boys and girls crown, respectively.

Congratulations to all of our champions, Players

of the Year and Leahy medal winners on your

accomplishments in 2016. You can read all about

these terrific players elsewhere in this yearbook.

A big reason we are able to get so much done with

such a small staff is the work of our volunteers. We

have continued to add solid, qualified rules officials

to our base of volunteers and they help us out

tremendously. A great example of the enthusiasm

of this group was at our U.S. Senior Amateur

qualifier in Iowa City. We only had to send one staff

person, yet we had a volunteer official with nearly

every group, providing a great experience for the


As a way to keep our officials more engaged

throughout the offseason, our staff started to hold

a series of web conferences to discuss the rules.

We started this in November and it has been a hit

so far. A mix of staff and volunteers get together in

a “virtual conference room” and discuss rules for

about an hour every two to three weeks. It gives

our staff a contact with our volunteers throughout

the winter but also gives everyone a chance to stay

fresh on the rules. This will no doubt help better

Jessie Sindlinger,

92nd Iowa Women’s

Amateur champion