Feb 07, 2024

National Girls & Women in Sports Day

GAP members share golf experiences to celebrate

| National Girls & Women in Sports Day |

The Women’s Sports Foundation, an organization committed to helping women achieve their goals in sports and life, annually leads celebrations for National Girls & Women in Sports Day on the first Wednesday in February. In-person and virtual events spread across the country include sports clinics, discussions and meetups focused on encouraging female participation in sports. As part of this year’s celebrations, GAP highlights two of its female members and their experiences in the sport of golf. 

Katrin Wolfe, 39, of East Stroudsburg, Pa., has been a GAP member since 2020. Following her education, which included stops at Penn State University (2002-06), where she played on the women’s golf team, West Virginia University (2007-08) and University of Pittsburgh (2012-13), she dove into the world of college athletic administration. She held positions in the athletics departments at University of Pittsburgh and East Stroudsburg University. In 2021, she became the Mid-Atlantic regional field rep at the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA). Representing Northampton Country Club, Wolfe regularly competes in both individual and team events on the GAP women’s schedule. In 2022, she captured the Mid-Amateur Division of GAP’s inaugural Women’s Championship at Bala Golf Club. In 2023, her team, which featured Golf Course at Glen Mills’ Grace Battista, Lehigh Country Club’s Jackie Beck and USGA/GAP GC’s Mary Kate Lynch, captured the 5th Women’s Spring Scramble at Yardley Country Club. The same foursome won the Women’s Division of the 28th Four-Player Team at Schuylkill Country Club. Wolfe rounded out her season with a trip to the Round of 16 in the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Stonewall (North). On National Girls & Women in Sports Day, Wolfe shares her introduction to golf and what led her to a career in the golf industry.  

How did you get into golf? 

I come from a family of golfers. My dad (Doug) had a strong amateur career in Pennsylvania. I grew up at Sunnehanna Country Club, where I spent most of my time in the summer playing golf. I loved the game and enjoyed playing competitively. It was just a natural fit to continue as I got older and to work professionally in the game.

Katrin Wolfe

Did you have any golf role models or mentors? If so, how much of an influence did they have on your career?

I have been lucky to have many mentors throughout my career. Being from Pennsylvania, we have so many wonderful people to look up to. Mrs. Dorothy Kunkle was a great role model and mentor early in my career. Mrs. Kunkle ran the junior golf program at Sunnehanna Country Club. She was passionate about the game and growing young golfers into well-rounded individuals. I will forever treasure some of our conversations as I grew up through the game.

Professionally, Dr. Nancy Jo Greenawalt has been a mentor and a dear friend. I worked several years with Dr. Greenawalt at East Stroudsburg University. Dr. G is a longtime athletic administrator and an advocate for women in sports. I look up to her for the path she helped create for women like myself, and her passion to make sports an opportunity for women. She believes in women supporting women, and continues to be a sounding board for me.

Do you view yourself as a role model for women’s golf? Why or why not?

I hope I am a role model for women in golf and in sports. I want the next generation of women to have more opportunities than I did. I love being able to have open and honest conversations with my peers. Just recently I had a fellow woman in sports call and thank me for being a role model and a mentor for her. It was such an honor for me. I know mentors have helped me through my life so I know it is great to help others.

What has your road to a career in the golf industry been like?

It has been interesting. I never intended to work in the golf industry. I was working in collegiate athletics before I joined GCSAA. The Mid-Atlantic field rep position opened in the spring of 2021. It sounded like a great opportunity and I know that I would not be able to play this great game without the wonderful golf course management professionals. Being a support to their industry is just a small way I can give back.

What got you interested in the golf course maintenance part of the industry?

I love golf courses. To me, golf courses are like a work of art. I am just lucky enough to get to play the masterpiece. The work golf course management professionals do everyday is so hard. I am so thankful they support and grow this great game. They are also environmental stewards. I hope I can help spread the word of the great work being done on golf courses because sometimes golf gets an incorrect reputation environmentally.

What would your advice be to girls getting into the game of golf today?

Enjoy every minute. Be proud that you are tackling one of the best games out there. Have confidence, even if you are the only girl at the course.

Christina Carroll, 22, of Bear, Del., became a GAP member in 2020. Currently a senior electrical engineering major at University of Delaware, she has represented the Blue Hens on the golf team since her freshman year (2021). With her 75.51 career scoring average, the USGA/GAP GC member ranks fifth in program history. In 2023, she qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur at Bel-Air Country Club. She failed to make match play. In 2021, she became the first woman and first African-American woman to qualify for the Delaware Open. Her performance was good for a T36 finish. Before her graduation from William Penn High School in 2020, she received the 2020 Robert McCurry Award, a scholarship awarded by the Delaware Junior Golf Scholarship Fund. Growing up an active member of both the First Tee – Delaware and Women Golfers Give Back, she continues her involvement in both programs as a volunteer. As part of National Girls and Women in Sports Day celebrations, Carroll discusses golf at the collegiate level and representing women’s golf.                     

Christina Carroll (credit: Delaware Athletics)

How did you get into golf?

I was introduced to the game of golf by my dad. 

What steps did you have to take to improve in the sport? 

To improve in golf I played and practiced a bunch. 

Did you see golf as an opportunity to further your education?

Yes, I saw golf as an opportunity to help further my education. During high school was when I decided that I wanted to play in college.

Do you feel a responsibility to represent women’s golf?

I am proud to represent women’s golf. Since golf is a male-dominated sport, I want other women to see me play and take interest in it as well. 

What has playing golf at the collegiate level been like for you?

Playing golf in college has been an experience that I am thankful for. I have gone to so many places, and met many people that I would not have if it wasn’t for college golf. 

What would your advice be to girls getting into the game of golf today?

My advice for girls getting into golf is to have fun and do it with your friends. 

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 organization’s 345 Member Clubs and 110,000 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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