2021 PGA Youth Player Development Award - The Golf Association of Philadelphia

Feb 09, 2022

2021 PGA Youth Player Development Award

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Juniors, News

Juniors, News

LedgeRock’s Miller receives national honor

From professional success to personal sadness.

What Andy Miller experienced in a 24-hour span is made for the Hallmark Channel writer’s room.

On Dec. 3, 2021, his phone buzzed. 

“I’m giving a golf lesson, and I see on my phone that I’m getting a call from [PGA of America President] Jim Richerson,” Miller, LedgeRock Golf Club’s Director of Instruction since 2015, said. “Thankfully, I’ve been a finalist for [the PGA Youth Player Development Award] a bunch of times before. Typically, I’ll get a letter in the mail. When I saw that he called and left a voicemail, I was hoping he was calling about [the award]. I checked when I was done for the day, and he said to give him a call. That’s when I found out.”

Richerson informed Miller of the latter’s receipt of the 2021 PGA Youth Player Development Award. It is given to a PGA member who has made extraordinary and exemplary contributions and achievements in the area of youth player development.

“I’m just going to control the things I can control, do the best I can on a daily basis, go to bed at night feeling good about what I did that day and do it again the next day.”

Andy Miller

On Dec. 4, Miller watched his son Owen, 14, compete in a soccer game at The Proving Grounds in Conshohocken, Pa. Then the unthinkable.

“He was running full speed, and the other team was running full speed. Right after the ball went out of bounds, [his opponent] continued to run and gave Owen a shoulder. Owen went flying into this massive steel pole that holds up netting in between fields. He was out immediately,” Miller, 42, of Wernersville, Pa., said. “At the time, we didn’t even know if he would make it. Is he going to remember us? Is he going to be able to walk? Is he going to be able to talk? He was in a coma for two days. It was brutal.”

So, Miller receives the PGA Youth Player Development Award, an honor that he’s waited on for years. The next day, he’s waiting to receive good news from the doctors. Heart racing.

“It was weird. I almost felt guilty. The range of emotions was like a rollercoaster,” Miller said. “I feel like typically I have pretty good perspective on what’s important in life. I like to think that I do anyway. this totally magnified it. I just wanted to be able to talk to my son.”

Owen, thankfully, since recovered from the accident. Although he can’t completely taste or smell yet, he’s “doing amazingly well, all things considered,” Miller said.

And Miller continues to provide the LedgeRock community with well-polished programming. His favorite on the youth player development front: a fall Junior golf league based on college football. The 2021 edition featured four teams made up of kids ages 5-14: Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Penn State. It includes instruction and various skills contests, culminating with a championship.

The 2021 PGA Youth Player Development Award joins a row of Philadelphia PGA Section honors: Teacher & Coach of the Year Award (2020) and Youth Player Development Award (2013, 2018-19). Miller is a U.S. Kids Master Coach and a certified PGA Coach. He also received recognition as one of Golf Digest’s “Best in PA” (2017-22).

A growing list of accolades punctuated by a national award begs the question: what’s next?

“Considering everything that we’ve been through as a family, I don’t specifically have any professional goals. I want to continue building relationships with people,” Miller said. “I’ve gained even more perspective than I felt I had before. I’m just going to control the things I can control, do the best I can on a daily basis, go to bed at night feeling good about what I did that day and do it again the next day.”   

Celebrating Amateur Golf since 1897, GAP, also known as the Golf Association of Philadelphia, is the oldest regional or state golf association in the United States. It serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. The Association’s 330 Member Clubs and 90,000 individual members are spread across Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland. The GAP’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

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