2013 Hall of Fame Induction
Following her playing career, Renee began coaching as an assistant for both the men’s and women’s teams at Bradley university. While finishing her degree in both business and marketing, she returned to the university of Illinois and served as assistant coach under Paula Smith during the spring of 2001.
Renee then ventured to the south and was an assistant golf professional at three different courses—Sherwood forest golf club, in Brevard, NC, the country club of west Georgia, and Connestee Falls Country Club. While there, she established a ‘clubs in the classroom’ campaign introducing hundreds of young children to the game of golf.
In 2006, Renee was chosen to be only the 3rd women’s golf coach at the university of Illinois. She replaced her former coach and mentor, Paula Smith, who retired after 28 years.The first women’s golf coach at the u. 0f i was Betsy Kimple. Betsy is deceased, but her daughters Janice and Sandy were in attendance. Janice is also playing in this tournament. Betsy Kimple was also a member of the IWGA board.
In the fall of 2006, the Illinois shattered the 54-hole school record by firing a cumulative total of 890 at the shoot-out at the legends. In the spring of 2007, the team finished 3rd at the Indiana invitational and notched the school’s 3rd Lowest 72 hole tournament total at the big 10 championships with a 1255.
In 2010 at the big 10 championships, the Illini made program history, finishing the 72 hole tournament with a total of 1230, the lowest score to date. Not only did Renee coach the record breaking team finish, but each individual golfer posted or tied her career low round.
In the 2010-2011 season, the Illini advanced to the NCAA regional championship for only the 3rd time in program history. And just recently, Renee and her Illini team finished 1 stroke behind the winner in the Minnesota invitational!
As board members, we are pleased to see so many of the young women who have played in our junior tournaments have been recruited by Renee and done very well under her tutelage.
In closing, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that Renee has been inducted into both the national golf coaches association hall of fame, and the greater Peoria hall of fame.
By Suzanne Younger