It is with deep sadness that Golf NSW acknowledges the passing of Golf NSW Honorary Member Joan O’Connell OAM.
Joan was heavily involved with Women’s Golf NSW (WGNSW), formerly NSW Ladies Golf Union, serving on its Junior Match Committee, Finance Committee, Tournament Panel, and as a Referee for Junior Tournaments.
She was also the Chairperson of the WGNSW Course Rating Committee from 2001 to 2005. Physically rating over 100 courses state-wide. In addition to her efforts rating courses, Joan helped conduct the NSW Golf Association (NSWGA) Rules of Golf Seminars and Exams.
Being State Rules Accredited and particularly well-known, Joan was often invited by other Districts to assist in referring major tournaments, including the 2002 and 2003 NSW Open.
PIC: WGNSW President 2004-2006 presenting Joan O’Connell WGNSW Honorary Membership in 2005.
Joan was a founding and Life Member of the Central Coast Women’s Golf Association (CCWGA). She held numerous committee positions from 1980 until 2012 including President, Vice President, Secretary, Assistant Secretary, L.G.U. Northern Co-op, WGNSW Council Member, and was its inaugural Captain in 2008. Prior to CCWGA, she was the Central Coast Delegate to NHDWGA.
From 1971 to 1991, Joan was on the Committee at Gosford, holding positions as President, Captain, and Secretary. She then joined Breakers Golf Club Wamberal (Terrigal) in 1991 and again served on its Committee from 2003 to 2010 holding positions as President and Captain.
On Australia Day 2017, Joan received the Medal of the Order of Australia for a life dedicated to golf for over 40 years.
Without her commitment, women’s golf in NSW would not have been as successful as it is today.
Golf NSW extends its condolences to Joan’s family and friends.