• PGA Philadelphia Section Hall of Fame •

Robert A. "Bob" Ross
Class of 1999

           

Bob Ross was born in Vermont in 1932 and learned to play golf as a caddy at the Shennecossett Golf Club in Groton, Connecticut. He attended Pasadena City College in California for two years where he played on the basketball and golf teams. He then served two years in the United States Army spending time in Korea. After being discharged from the army he worked in Texas as an assistant pro. His first position as a head professional was at the Susquehanna Valley Country Club where he was also the green superintendent. From there he moved to the Valley Country Club as their professional for three years and after that he was the professional at the North Hills Country Club and the Philadelphia Cricket Club. In 1966 he began to show signs of becoming one of the Section’s elite players when he tied for fourth in the Mexican Open. The next year Ross won the Section Championship and the Pennsylvania Open. In his Pennsylvania Open victory Ross edged out Arnold Palmer by one stroke on Palmer’s home course, the Laurel Valley Country Club. That year he won the DeBaufre Trophy for the low scoring average, led the Schmidt Points competition and he either won or finished near the top in all of the Section’s big money tournaments. While he was in the Section he qualified for three PGA Championships and two U.S. Opens. Ross was elected secretary of the Section in 1969 and he was the Section’s 19th president in 1971 and 1972. In 1972 he was the Section’s “Professional of the Year” and he was inducted into the Philadelphia Section Hall of Fame in 1999. In the 1970s he worked as the assistant Tournament Coordinator for the PGA on the Caribbean Tour. Ross traveled to Italy twice in the late 1970s to work with the Italian professionals with their teaching methods and in 1982 he spent four weeks in Japan teaching and promoting golf for the Rotary Club of America. After leaving the Section in 1972 he was the professional at Sawgrass Country Club in Florida where he hosted one of the first TPC Championships in 1977. He then moved to the Baltusrol Golf Club where he served as the professional for twenty years. At Baltusrol he qualified for the 1980 U.S. Open, which was being played at his club, and he hosted the Open again in 1993 along with a U.S. Women’s Open in 1985. Ross was the New Jersey PGA Section’s “Professional of the Year” in 1980 and 1989 and he is also a member of their Hall of Fame.
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