2016 OMEGA Player of the Year - Ryan Helminen, PGA
For Helminen, a PGA Teaching Professional at Ridgeway CC in Neenah, the honor marks the eighth time he has been able to capture the member award. He previously earned the award in 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2015.
The Appleton native once again left his mark on the national and local golf scene with his great play. From start to finish his presence was felt at each and every event he played. On the local level he was able to card wins at WPGA Classic #1, the Hornung’s Classic and finish in the top ten at the WPGA Match Play Championship and Wisconsin State Open. The highlight of his local play though would come at the final WPGA point event of the season, the WPGA Professional Championship. Helminen was able to card a 7-under-par 209 total at Wild Rock GC to capture his third WPGA Professional Championship win.
“I was involved and had a lot of opportunities to win this year,” Helminen said. “In pretty much every event I played in I was kind of in the thick of things. It’s what you try to shoot for, to have a chance to win.”
On the national scene he once again made waves at the PGA Professional Championship. His consistent play throughout the four days helped him navigate his way through the 312 player field and finish in a tie for 10th. The finish propelled him to his third straight appearance in the PGA Championship in August. There he made the section proud as he narrowly missed the cut by one shot and carded the lowest score by a PGA Professional.
For the year Helminen earned 1,432.50 points. Finishing second to him in the standings was three-time Member POY, Schuman at 1,246.25. Directly behind Schuman was Milwaukee CC’s Pat Steffes with a total of 1020 points.
“Being Player of the Year is a great accomplishment,” Helminen said. “It definitely shows my consistency.”
His play on a local and national level also led him to an impressive fifth place finish in the National PGA of America Player of the Year standings.
With another season of great golf in the bag, the focus now shifts to 2017. Helminen is already looking forward to the PGA Professional Championship in June, as he we will make his tenth straight appearance in the event.
“Even though I’m in my early 40s, I still feel that I’m getting better,” Helminen said. “I’m just going to continue to work on capitalizing on the opportunities to win when I get them.”
Table of Contents1 - Background / Process
2 - 2017 Golf Professional of the Year - Michael O'Reilly, PGA
3 - 2017 Teacher of the Year - David Roesch, PGA
4 - 2017 Assistant Professional of the Year - Scott Walecki
5 - 2017 Youth Player Development Award - Bob Feller, PGA
6 - 2017 Horton Smith Award - Danny Rainbow, PGA
7 - 2017 Player Development Award - Jeff Ellingson, PGA
8 - 2017 Bill Strausbaugh Award - Joel Weitz, PGA
9 - 2017 Private Merchandiser of the Year - Vince Pulizzano, PGA
10 - 2017 Public Merchandiser of the Year - Andrew Barrett, PGA
11 - 2017 Resort Merchandiser of the Year - Jim Lombardo, PGA
12 - 2016 OMEGA Player of the Year - Ryan Helminen, PGA
13 - 2016 OMEGA Senior Player of the Year - Jim Schuman, PGA
14 - 2016 OMEGA Assistant Player of the Year - Andrew Troyanek
15 - 2017 Honorary Member - Ron Hurab
16 - 2017 Honorary Member - Thor Lundgren