Yorkshire’s Sue Johnson, who was one of the first Presidents of England Golf, has been made an OBE for services to golf in the New Year Honours list.
“This is a very great honour,” said Sue, who has held prominent positions within golf at national, county and club level. “I must be very lucky to be honoured for doing something which has given me the greatest pleasure.”
For many years Sue was closely involved with the administration of women’s golf, but when England Golf was formed in 2012 she became joint President of the new organisation, alongside Lincolnshire’s Paul Baxter.
England Golf was formed by the merger of the men’s and women’s governing bodies and Sue commented at the time: “This is history in the making and we are privileged to be part of it. Through our roles as President we can help to bring men and women golfers together as members of one, united and successful organisation.”
Since then, she has also become the first woman to be President of Huddersfield Golf Club and is currently in the second year of her term of office. But she insists: “I’m not a trailblazer. I’ve just been in the right place at the right time – and I can’t say ‘No’!”
Sue began her career in golf administration in Yorkshire and went on to represent the county on the English Ladies’ (later Women’s) Golf Association. She was chairman of the association in 1987 and then started a six-year term on the Ladies’ Golf Union (LGU), which she chaired in 1994.
Sue was the LGU President from 2001-03, has also been captain and president of Yorkshire and is a life vice-president of both bodies. During her time with the LGU she was involved with running the Commonwealth Tournament, now the Astor Trophy, and the Curtis Cup, when it was held at Royal Liverpool and won by Great Britain & Ireland.
She has been a single figure golfer for most of her life and played for the Yorkshire second team, saying: “I’ve never been a top golfer but I have had such pleasure from the game and met so many wonderful people.”
Sue was introduced to the game by her husband, Peter, and their elder son, Paul, is also a golfer and is a past captain of Huddersfield Golf Club. Their other son, Dan, represented Great Britain in wheelchair basketball in three Paralympic Games and their daughter, Jill, played hockey for England before making her home in France. Sue has four grandchildren.
Image © Linda Whitwam