31 Jul 2020 | Clubs & Facilities |
First female president for Ballarat
by Mark Hayes
A quiet – and positive – golfing revolution continues to gather momentum.
For the first time in its storied 125-year history, the Ballarat Golf Club has elected a female president.
The club announced Lesa Gray’s appointment this week, continuing the emerging trend of women taking office in clubs around the country.
The BGC board said it was “delighted” with the decision.
Gray has been an active club member for the past 13 years, serving on its “ladies committee” for four years, with two of those as women’s captain. She has also served as club vice-president for the past 17 months.
“I am both honoured and delighted to be elected to the position of president of the Ballarat Golf Club and look forward to helping overcome the challenges the club faces as we emerge from Covid-19,” Gray said.
“The support I have received from all our members has been tremendous and now I will focus on being the president the Ballarat Golf Club deserves.”
The BGC has been at the cutting edge of inclusivity in recent years and Golf Australia’s female engagement senior manager Chyloe Kurdas was thrilled with the latest progress.
“Kudos to those in Ballarat who have really taken on board the positive impact women and families can have on golf clubs and their communities,” Kurdas said.
“It’s encouraging to all of us working on Golf Australia’s Vision 2025 strategy – to increase female participation at all levels – that such a significant stride has been made by a large club with a long history.
“Women’s engagement in club leadership roles is vital in evolving the culture of golf to ensure that it speaks to everyone in the community.
“Congratulations to Lesa, but more importantly to those who have shown her support and backed the club’s inclusive vision.”
Gray said she would continue the club’s focus on equality and inclusion by encouraging the growth and development of its programs for women, juniors and those with disabilities.
“The beauty of golf is you can play all year round, at any level and at any age,” she said.
“And if you are lucky you can play golf all around the world – pre and post-Covid, of course.
“My philosophy on golf and particularly my own game is that whatever the day brings, it is always better to be playing golf than not and I look forward to many more years of walking the fairways.”
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