Paul Lawrie, the 1999 Open Champion, Ryder Cup winner and eight-time European Tour champion, has been appointed to the Board of the European Tour group as a Non-Executive Director with immediate effect.
The Scot, who celebrated his 53rd birthday on New Year’s Day, will bring important player perspective to the Board having been a constant presence on the main Tour for 28 years from 1992 until 2020, before turning his competitive attention in recent years to the Legends Tour.
In addition to two spells on the Tour’s Tournament Committee – from 2007-2010 and 2015-2017 – he also assumed the role of tournament promoter for three years; the Paul Lawrie Match Play running on the European Tour from 2015 to 2017, the first two years being staged in Scotland, the third year in Germany. Moreover, Paul’s management company Five Star Sports Agency, will promote the Farmfoods Scottish Challenge supported by the R&A, on the European Challenge Tour in May.
Away from Tour golf, Lawrie – who was accorded the honour of an MBE in 2000 and an OBE in 2013 – is heavily involved in the sport at all levels in his native country, not only through the Paul Lawrie Golf Centre in his home town of Aberdeen which opened in 2012, but also through his Foundation which, since launching in 2001, has introduced thousands of children to the game.
Furthermore, he runs the Tartan Pro Tour, a developmental Tour for male and female professionals aspiring to play on the Challenge Tour, the DP World Tour or the Ladies European Tour.
Speaking of his appointment, Lawrie said: “I am delighted and honoured to join the Board of the European Tour group. Having played in many events over the past 30 years and now with various business interests away from the course, I will use my experience to help continue the excellent work of the current Board.”
Chairman David Williams said: “I’m delighted to welcome Paul to the Board of the European Tour group and I know his experience of a wide range of Tour matters both inside and outside the ropes, will be invaluable to us.
“We have an excellent balance on our current Board between experienced business leaders and respected professional golfers, and we are fortunate that Paul is not only a knowledgeable businessman but also one of our most valued members.”
Through a rotational system, which adheres to the best practices of corporate governance in terms of time spent in service, Paul will take his seat on the Board as Northern Irishman David Jones and Englishman DJ Russell step down.
PAUL LAWRIE – CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
* Graduated from the Qualifying School in 1991 to begin an unbroken run of 28 playing years on the European Tour.
* Highlight was his stunning victory in the 1999 Open Championship at Carnoustie. No player in Open history has come from ten shots behind on the final day to triumph but he did just that, eventually beating Frenchman Jean Van de Velde and American Justin Leonard in a memorable four-hole play-off.
* Won eight times on the European Tour including another significant triumph in his native Scotland – the Dunhill Links Championship at St Andrews in 2001. His amateur partner that week was another current European Tour group Board member, Martin Gilbert.
* Holed a 40 foot birdie putt on the final hole of the Old Course to win the Dunhill Links Championship, a moment later voted as European Tour Shot of the Year for 2001.
* Represented Europe in two Ryder Cups, both in the United States; at Brookline in 1999 and at Medinah in 2012.
* Played a crucial part in the famous ‘Miracle of Medinah’ final day comeback by Europe, adding a vital point at number five in the singles order with a comprehensive 5 and 3 victory over Brandt Snedeker, who a week earlier had won the FedEx Cup on the PGA TOUR.
* Was Vice Captain to Darren Clarke during the 2016 Ryder Cup at Valhalla.