Golf Professional of the Year

Gary Sassu, PGA

Chippanee Country Club


Teacher of the Year

George Connor, PGA

Connor Golf


Youth Player Development Award

EJ Altobello, PGA

Tekoa Country Club

Bill Strausbaugh Award

Joe Connerton, PGA

Hartford Golf Club


Horton Smith Award

John Steffen, PGA

Twin Hills Country Club


Public Merchandiser of the Year

Jantzen Vargas, PGA

Lake of Isles


Private Merchandiser of the Year

Larry Antinozzi, PGA

TPC River Highlands


Assistant Professional of the Year

Evan Lambert, PGA

Hartford Golf Club


Player Development Award

Paul Banks, PGA 

Copper Hill Golf Club


Sales Representative of the Year

Jim Mayo

Jim Mayo Golf

President's Award




Walter Lowell Public Golf Course Distinguished Service Award

Westwoods Knolls Golf Course

Farmington, Conn.



2017 Hall of Fame Inductees


Ken Doyle

Hop Meadow Country Club


Joe Paesani

The Bay Club


George Hunter

Deceased PGA Member


Ed Rubis

Deceased PGA Member



2017 Jack Kelly Sportsmanship Award

Mia Gryzwinski

Kyle Camello



2017 JGA Player of the Year

Mia Gryzwinski

Noah Straub



2017 Section Player of the Year

Brent Paladino

Connecticut State Golf Association



2017 Senior Player of the Year

 Billy Downes



2018 Special Award Winners

Gary Sassu Honored as Golf Professional of the Year

Each year, the Connecticut Section PGA presents ten awards to recognize outstanding performance and superior achievements by members of our section. The Special Awards Committee reviewed all nominations and present their recommendation to the Board of Directors for approval. The winners were announced at the Spring Membership Meeting.

The  2018 Golf Professional of the Year is Gary Sassu from Chippanee Country Club.

The other award winners announced at the meeting included: George Connor (Connor Golf), Teacher of the Year; Joe Connerton (Hartford Golf Club), Bill Strasbaugh Award; John Steffen (Twin Hills CC), Horton Smith Award; Jim Mayo (Jim Mayo Golf), Sales Representative of the Year; and Evan Lambert (Hartford Golf Club), Assistant Professional of the Year.

Merchandiser of the Year awards went to Larry Antinozzi (private) of TPC River Highlands, and Jantzen Vargas (public) of Lake of Isles, while player development honors will be awarded to EJ Altobello (youth) of Tekoa CC, and Paul Banks (player development) of Copper Hill Golf Club.

All the recipients were honored at the Golf Professional of the Year & Special Awards Dinner on Saturday, August 18, at Chippanee Country Club. More than 200 guests were in attendance for the exciting evening.

If you have any comments or questions, please contact Special Awards Committee Chairman Ralph Salito, or call the section office.