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Jack Hall (Savannah, Ga.)

Senior Player of the Year – Jack Hall

After years of contemplation, Jack Hall, of Savannah, GA, finally joined the Society of Seniors just prior to the 41st Dale Morey Championship at the Berkeley Hall Club in Bluffton, SC, and the rest, as they say, is history.  Hall went on to win the Dale Morey Championship by seven strokes by posting a three-round total of 14-under par in the organization’s premier senior championship.  He shot his age of 65 (yes, he could be playing Super Senior) in the second round on the South Course at Berkeley Hall, adding to the memories cemented that week.  Hall would end up finishing with 570 total points on the year, earning Senior Player of the Year honors by just 60 points over Jonathan Valuck of Oklahoma City.


“I could kick myself for not joining the Society of Seniors sooner,” said Hall.  “My friend Doug Hanzel kept encouraging me to join and I’ve really enjoyed being a member.  I never really think about being a Super Senior.  I have two grandkids and they would probably call me that.”

The Senior Player of the Year race was tight coming down the stretch between Hall and Valuck.  Valuck outdueled Hall at the 15th Jack Hesler Tournament at Olde Stone in July, edging Jack by one stroke.  Valuck would also go on to win the 7th Fall Classic at Flying Horse to pull ahead of Hall in the points race.

In perhaps his most important performance of the year, Hall gutted out a tied 5th finish in the 8th Founders Cup at Silverado Resort during a final round in which he was fighting the flu.  Then during the season ending Ralph Bogart Tournament, Hall battled through the tough conditions to a seventh-place finish to seal the deal and earn the Society of Seniors Senior Player of the Year honors.

Asked about his 2023 season goals, Hall said, “I didn’t know much about the Player of the Year race until the Napa event.  I took my wife along out there and we had a great time until the last day when I came down with the flu.  I don’t even remember playing that last round, but I gutted it out and I’m glad I did.  Then at the Bogart in the tough weather conditions I was able to grind out a top 10.  I just wish Dr. Valuck would have been able to make it to the Bogart Tournament to battle it out one more time.”

On what being named Player of the Year means, Hall commented, “It’s an honor to be named the player of the year when you’re playing with guys that have been competing their whole lives, so anytime you have success, it’s very appreciated.  The camaraderie in the Society is second to none.  I typically look at the venues first and then the tournament.  In particular, Olde Stone (Bowling Green, KY) was a spectacular venue so that was a very nice surprise.  We had a lot of nice venues in 2023, and it looks like the same in 2024 and I hope I can finish as well as I did this year.”

Hall added, “I just want to thank everyone involved with the Society for their time and hard work in putting on great tournaments for us.”


Gregory Goode (Salina, Kan.)

Super Senior Player of the Year – Gregory Goode

Gregory Goode was better than good in earning the Society of Seniors Super Senior Player of the Year award in 2023.  It seemed he was either winning or in the hunt at every event.  Goode played in six events, finishing no worse than tied for 2nd in any of them, quite impressive.  Getting his season underway at the 15th Jack Hesler at Olde Stone in July, Goode tied for second behind the stellar performance of champion Steve Humphrey, of Ocala, FL.  He then finished runner-up to none other than Chip Lutz on Lutz’s home course at the 4th National Super Senior Championship held at LedgeRock Golf Club in Mohnton, PA.  Goode racked up three wins at the Fall Classic at Flying Horse, John Kline at Spring Creek, and the Ralph Bogart at Innisbrook.


Going into the 2023 season, Goode had a plan.

“Yes, Player of the Year was a goal,” said Goode.  “I told my wife I was going to play in the National Super Senior Championship, and if I do well, I’ll play in as many as I can.  I finished second there for a good showing, then played well going forward and had a great fall.  I played terrible in the summer, so it was nice to flush the summer and close out the year playing well.”

In total, Goode stacked up 1030 points during the season, with his closest challenger being Jim McNelis, of Gig Harbor, WA, who had a stellar season of his own posting a win (Founders Cup at Silverado) and two top five finishes.  Goode finished runner-up to McNelis at the Founders Cup by one stroke.

On what it means to be Player of the Year, Goode added, “I told my friends, some of whom are past Society members, it’s an amazing recognition in an organization that has the history that it does.  To do this with the level of competition that we have, it’s hard for me to put into words what an honor this is.  For me, it’s the achievement of a lifetime.  Playing in Society events has been fun and getting to know the guys has been great.  One of the things that many of us enjoy the most is that kind of camaraderie and competition.  At this stage of our lives, that’s important for all of us.”


George Walker (Fairhope, Ala.)

Legend Player of the Year – George Walker

George Walker played very consistently throughout the 2023 campaign and edged out Peter Van Ingen, of Palm Beach, FL, by 90 points en route to capturing the Society of Seniors Legend Player of the Year award.  By his own standards, Walker got off to a slow start at the season opening Spring Classic at Abacoa Golf Club in Jupiter, FL, finishing tied 13th in the event where Van Ingen went on to win by five strokes over stalwart Don Donatoni, of West Chester, PA.


“I wouldn’t say it was a goal at first,” said Walker of the Player of the Year.  “But I started playing well and all of the sudden I was up there near the top and figured I needed to try to close it out.  After the win at the Senior Masters, it became a goal.”

After arriving in Palm Springs for the Senior Masters at Indian Wells, Walker put together a string of a win at the Senior Masters, followed by two runner-up finishes at the Fall Classic and Founders Cup to create some separation from the rest of his challengers.  While Van Ingen posted a third-place finish at the season ending Ralph Bogart Tournament at Innisbrook, Walker finished in a tie for 9th, good enough to hold on to earn the yearlong honor.

In response to what the award means to him, Walker said, “It means a lot.  There are some very good players that compete in our events, so just to be in the top ten of the list is great.  To be at the top is a real honor, and I also won the 2023 Golfweek Legend Player of the Year as well, so it’s probably the best year I’ve had competing, at least since 2014.”

“I’ve played with all of the 2023 award winners,” said Walker.  “I’m very happy to be mentioned in the same sentence as those guys, and it’s impressive that Jack [Hall] did it as a Super Senior.  If I’m on the list with those guys, I’m very happy because all of them are really, really good.”

In addition to his 2023 accolades, Walker was also recently inducted into the University of Montevallo (Alabama) Athletic Hall of Fame, where he played on the golf team from 1971-1974.  Unfortunately, Walker will undergo shoulder surgery soon that will put his golf clubs to rest for the recovery period of four to five months.  Rest assured, he already has his sights set on a return, potentially at the National Super Senior Championship this coming September at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club.

“I hope to see the guys in Portland for the National Super Senior Championship,” said Walker.  “That’s the carrot dangling to get me back in shape and 100%.  I’m disappointed I won’t have a chance to defend, but I’m excited to get back to good health with the shoulder and come back when it’s ready.”


Johnny Blank (Frostburg, Md.)

Grand Master Player of the Year – Johnny Blank

Johnny Blank put together a dominant performance during the 2023 season on his way to earning the Society of Seniors Grand Master Player of the Year honor.  Blank competed in four events and compiled two victories (Senior Masters at Indian Wells & John Kline Championship at Spring Creek), a runner-up (Ralph Bogart Tournament), and a tie for 11th (Spring Classic at Abacoa).  He would finish 260 points ahead of runner-up Ron Johnson, of Arroyo Grande, CA.


“My mindset it to always go into each day trying to play the best you can,” said Blank.  “There are a lot of great players in our events so if you win, great, but you can’t get too upset when you don’t.”

The Frostburg, Maryland resident relied on accuracy and consistency at the Senior Masters, winning by two strokes over his closest challengers, George Dillon, of Midland, MI, and Jack Marin, of Durham, NC, respectively.  At the John Kline Championship at Spring Creek, Blank lapped the field in posting a three-round total of 5-under par 211 for three rounds.

Asked if Player of the Year was a goal going into 2023, Blank responded, “Yes, I had never won a Society of Seniors Player of the Year award.  I have won four Golfweek POY awards (most recently in 2022 & 2023).  The highlight of my year came at the John Kline Championship at Spring Creek in Virginia.  It was my most memorable event with three great days of weather and I played very well.”

At the season finisher at Innisbrook Resort for the Ralph Bogart Tournament, Blank grinded for a runner-up finish behind Henry Cole, of Monroe, LA, to lock up the Player of the Year award.

“It’s another feather in my golf hat and something I’m very proud of,” said Blank.  “To be mentioned with the other award winners is special.  They’re all great players and have been well-known in the Society for years and I’m very proud to be a member of that group.”