Volunteer of the Year: Karen Shippy

Karen Shippy

Every year the KCGA reflects on the efforts of all our hard-working volunteers and crowns a Volunteer of the Year. Our volunteer staff puts in countless hours to help us conduct our overflowing calendar of events. Without them, the KCGA couldn’t be successful.

The 2018 Volunteer of the Year is a long-standing member of the golf community both as an avid golfer herself and a tenured volunteer with the golf association. After encouragement from KCGA board member Mary Jane Barnes, Karen Shippy decided to get involved serving on the board and in volunteering after retiring in 1998.

“I thought it would be interesting and I had a great respect for the organization and what they did so I said yes,” says Shippy.

Shippy believes she has broadened her horizons delving into the worlds of course rating and rules officiating. Her motivation to keep volunteering comes from her admiration of the association and the camaraderie between the other volunteers that she has come to know over the years.

“Many of the volunteers have been involved as long, or even longer, than I have. The association is so appreciative of their volunteers and they continue to acknowledge that at every opportunity,” praises Shippy.

“The other thing I must mention is that the KCGA Staff is one of the most professional, knowledgeable, and fun groups to be around.”

In mentioning the learning aspect of volunteering, Shippy believes that junior tour events are the best place to learn. Junior events can be unpredictable and provide some rulings you may never have thought would come up. Shippy thinks the KCGA ought to publish something about the crazy situations that come up.

“The group of juniors participating in our events is so impressive. My faith in the younger generation has been restored by meeting so many wonderful young people,” Shippy says of our junior players.

Shippy is a dual-threat volunteer as she assists with both rules officiating and course rating. The big difference between course rating from the rules is that volunteers don’t encounter situations similar to giving an unfavorable ruling. In course rating, there are less outside influences and involves discourse between a team or raters. When a team of course raters has a disagreement, Shippy says the team tends to “leave some chicken on the bone” and move on – a term she says only course raters would appreciate.

In Volunteer of the Year fashion, Shippy encourages all to consider joining the KCGA Volunteer group.

“It’s a very rewarding endeavor. We aren’t talking about dedicating your whole summer, but you can start off slow and see if it’s something that could become as addictive as it did for me.”

The Kansas City Golf Association would like to thank Karen Shippy as well as all of our volunteers for all of their hard work. Their dedication and passion for the sport and our players is something we take great pride in.

Karen Shippy is one of the many veteran volunteers that not only serve themselves but are positive influences towards other volunteers and players.

If you would like to get involved in volunteering as a rules official, contact Todd Stice at todd@kcgolf.org. If you would like to get involved as a course rater, contact Jacque Madison at jacque@kcgolf.org.