Indiana PGA honors Benson with Strausbaugh Award

February 29, 2024

Cat Benson awardMUNCIE, Ind. — The Indiana Section PGA recognized Catherine (Cat) Benson, dean of Trine University’s Ketner School of Business, with its Bill Strausbaugh Award on Monday in Muncie, Indiana.

The honor was one of several special awards presented at the organization’s annual business meeting, held in the Horizon Convention Center.

Established in 1979, the Bill Strausbaugh Award is presented to PGA members who by their day-to-day efforts have distinguished themselves in the field of club relations, causing dramatic improvements in employment conditions in their local section and/or the PGA of America. 

Benson was named the first female president of the Indiana Section PGA in 2019. She was lauded for her pivotal role in fostering career events, monthly calls, and promoting golf opportunities.

She started her career in the golf industry in 2002 as women’s golf coach at Bethel College, earning Region XII Coach of the Year in 2005. She managed two facilities as director of golf for Richmond, Indiana, before coming to Trine to lead its golf management program in 2012.

The Indiana PGA honored Benson in 2019 with its Horton Smith Award, which recognizes individual golf professionals for their outstanding and continuing contributions to developing and improving education opportunities for the PGA golf professional.

A statement on the Indiana PGA website reads, in part:

“Throughout her career, Cat has led teams, managed staff, and now oversees an entire school within a university. Her success stems from a commitment to open communication and a passion for mentoring others to reach their full potential. And while she has ended up in leadership roles, she has not always actively sought those out. Hard work and a strong commitment to others have positioned Cat to take on leadership roles in her career. In her unique education role, she collaborates with facilities and PGA Professionals, addressing industry challenges. Cat strives to bridge gaps by sharing valuable insights with employers and young professionals alike, promoting success in the golf industry.”

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