The Big Five

By | April 3rd, 2018

The 2017 class of Excellence in Club Management Award winners, from left to right: Brian Baldwin, Mitchell Platt, Anne Stryhn, Joseph Krenn, and Kenneth Kouril.

The 2017 recipients of the Excellence in Club Management Awards were honored during a reception, dinner and ceremony on March 3 at The Olympic Club in San Francisco.

On March 3 at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, the 2017 recipients of the Excellence in Club Management (ECM) Awards, co-sponsored by Club & Resort Business and the McMahon Group, were honored during a reception, dinner and ceremony held in conjunction with the Club Managers Association of America’s annual conference.

The event was sponsored by ClubCorp, Denehy Club Thinking Partners, ForeTees LLC, Preferred Club, and Yamaha.

The annual awards are selected through nominations submitted on behalf of qualified candidates, and a Selection Committee comprised of a peer group of club managers conducts the judging; the McMahon Group and Club & Resort Business are not involved in the selection of the award winners. The 2017 Selection Committee was chaired by Jeffrey Kreafle, CCM, General Manager/COO of Congressional Country Club, Bethesda, Md.

At the Excellence in Club Management Awards dinner, held at The Olympic Club in San Francisco on March 3, club management leaders gathered to honor the 2017 honorees.

Winners of the 2017 ECM awards included:
• The James H. Brewer Award (Country/Golf Clubs with 600 or More Full-Privilege Members)—Joseph Krenn, CCM, CCE, ECM, Chief Operating Officer/General Manager, Farmington Country Club, Charlottesville, Va.
• The Mead Grady Award (Country/Golf Clubs with Fewer than 600 Full-Privilege Members)—Kenneth Kouril, CCM, CCE, CAM, ECM, Chief Operating Officer, The Sanctuary Golf Club, Sanibel Island, Fla.
• The Mel Rex Award (City, Athletic or Specialty/Non-Golf Club)—Mitchell Platt, MCM, CCE, ECM, General Manager, Cosmos Club, Washington, D.C.
• The 2017 Rising Star Award—Brian Baldwin, CCM, ECM, Assistant General Manager, Baltusrol Golf Club, Springfield, N.J. Baldwin’s award was presented by Kevin Vitale, CCM, Baltusrol’s General Manager/COO.
• The 2017 Rising Star Award—Anne Stryhn, CCM, ECM, Assistant General Manager, The Country Club of Virginia (CCV), Richmond, Va. Stryhn’s award was presented by Phil Kiester, CCM, CCV’s General Manager

Magicians arranged by Joe Furlow, General Manager of The Academy of Magical Arts and a 2016 ECM winner, entertained the crowd during the cocktail reception.

Two Lifetime Achievement Awards were also announced at the Awards Dinner, to Denzil Palmer, now retired after 28 years as General Manager and Secretary of The Royal Montreal Golf Club in Quebec, Canada, and Robert James, CCM, CHE, who served as Executive Director of Westchester Country Club in Rye, N.Y., from 1991 to 2017.

Presentations for ECM winners are also held at their own clubs throughout the year, and in-depth articles detailing their achievements will appear in upcoming issues of C&RB.

Information on nominating candidates for ECM recognition in future years can be found at

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