Charlie Sifford, Hall of Famer / Professional Golfer   Leave a comment


Charles Sifford (born June 2, 1922) is an African American former professional golfer who helped to desegregate the PGA of America.

Sifford was born in Charlotte, North Carolina. He began work as a caddy at the age of thirteen. Later he competed in the golf tournaments that black golfers organized for themselves as they were excluded from the PGA of America, and worked as a personal golf coach for band leader Billy Eckstine. He first attempted to qualify for a PGA Tour event at the 1952 Phoenix Open, using an invitation obtained by former World heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis and was subjected to threats and racial abuse there and at other tournaments. In 1957 he won the Long Beach Open, which was not an official PGA Tour event, but was co-sponsored by the PGA and had some well known white players in the field. He became a member of the Tour in 1961 and went on to win two official money events. He also won the 1975 PGA Seniors’ Championship, then the leading tournament for golfers over fifty.

In 2004, Sifford became the first African American inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. He chose the fellow Hall of Fame member South African Gary Player to present him for induction. On June 22, 2006, he received an honorary degree from the University of St Andrews as a Doctor of Laws. He also received the 2007 Old Tom Morris Award from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, GCSAA’s highest honor.

In 2009, the Northern Trust Open created an exemption for a player who represents the advancement of diversity in golf; it is named in honor of Sifford and is referred to as the Charlie Sifford Exemption.[1]

In 2011 Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation rename Revolution Golf Course to Charlie Sifford Golf Course.

PGA Tour wins

 Other wins

  • 1952 UGA National Negro Open
  • 1953 UGA National Negro Open
  • 1954 UGA National Negro Open
  • 1955 UGA National Negro Open
  • 1956 UGA National Negro Open, Rhode Island Open
  • 1957 Long Beach Open
  • 1960 UGA National Negro Open, Almaden Open (unofficial win – one year prior to becoming a PGA Tour event)
  • 1963 Puerto Rico Open
  • 1971 Sea Pines

 Senior PGA Tour wins

 Other senior wins

 Results in major championships

Tournament 1959 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
U.S. Open T32 T46 DNP T43 DNP 27 CUT DNP DNP T32 DNP
PGA Championship DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T33 DNP DNP T59 CUT
Tournament 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980
U.S. Open DNP T49 T21 CUT 60 CUT DNP DNP CUT DNP DNP
PGA Championship DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP T48 DNP CUT DNP DNP CUT

Note: Sifford never played in the Masters Tournament nor The Open Championship.

DNP = Did not play
CUT = missed the half-way cut
“T” indicates a tie for a place
Yellow background for top-10

Posted February 15, 2012 by pennylibertygbow in Sports

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