Norton, MA — This year’s MGA Salute to Champions Dinner will be made even more special. As part of the evening’s festivities, one of the association’s valued MGA Family members – Robert G. Dowling III – will receive the Frank H. Sellman Distinguished Service Award.
Dowling will be recognized for this outstanding achievement – he is only the 14th recipient in MGA history – during the Salute to Champions Dinner which will be held on Thursday, January 10th at Wellesley Country Club.
This honor was established in 1988 in order to recognize individuals who have exhibited exemplary service to the game of golf during the course of their careers. The award was named in honor of Frank H. Sellman, a long time member of Brae Burn Country Club who served as the Secretary-Treasurer of the MGA from 1961 to 1969.
A longtime resident of Cape Cod and member at both Oyster Harbors Club and Hyannisport Club, Dowling – who is affectionately known by his friends and family as “Sandy” – has been a fixture in New England amateur golf circles for decades. He served as president of both the Massachusetts Golf Association and The Hickory Shafts. He held the former position from 1990 through 1991. He also also been a member of the USGA Regional Affairs Committee for numerous years.
Coupled with his leadership positions, he has – over the years – continued to serve as a Rules Official for MGA and New England Golf Association (NEGA) events. Most recently, Dowling has held the post of tournament chairman for the NEGA and has worked alongside longtime executive-secretary/treasurer Harry McCracken to oversee the three major NEGA Championships – New England Amateur Championship, New England Junior Amateur Invitational and New England Senior Amateur Championship.
An outstanding player in his own right, Dowling is a former club champion at Hyannisport and a two-time club champion at Oyster Harbors Club. He won the latter titles 20 years apart.
“Sandy Dowling has been a fixture in amateur golf circles here in New England for decades,” said Paul Burke, Jr., the MGA’s president. “His tireless work and dedication has been enduring and there is no one more deserving of the Frank H. Sellman Distinguished Service Award.”
In addition to his work with amateur golf, the 72-year-old Dowling has managed a successful insurance agency (Dowling, O’Neil Ins. Agency, Inc.) and served the Cape Cod community as corporator of Cape Cod Hospital, chairman of the Better Business Bureau of Cape Cod, president of the Hyannis Public Library and a board of director for the Cape Cod YMCA.
Mr. Dowling will take his place alongside other impressive honorees which include:
1988 – Leon Bishop
1989 – Andrew C. Bailey
1990 – Charles M. Pyle, Jr.
1991 – Roger Barry
1992 – John Arnold
1994 – Harry B. McCracken, Jr.
1995 – John P. English
1996 – William Flynn
1998 – George M. Cohen
1999 – Richard A. Crosby
2003 – Richard D. Haskell
2006 – William C. Foley
2009 – James F. Gaquin, Jr.
2012 – Robert G. Dowling III