Bill Wright, Inducted 2013

Bill Wright

In winning the 1959 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship, Bill Wright made history by becoming the first African-American to win a USGA national championship. Bill was one of the first participants in Fir State's junior golf program at Seattle's Jefferson Park GC in the 1950s, and within a year after picking up the game he was the city's Junior champion. He earned athletic honors in golf and basketball at Western Washington State College (now University), winning the NAIA collegiate individual golf championship in 1960, and is a member of WWU's Athletic Hall of Fame. He competed in the 1959 U.S. Amateur and was a member of the 1959 Hudson Cup team. He briefly ventured onto the professional tour, and played in the 1966 U.S. Open. He has qualified for five U.S. Senior Opens, and has been enshrined in the USGA Museum in Far Hills, N.J. The USGA, WSGA, First Tee of Greater Seattle and Jefferson Park GC declared October 10, 2009 as "Bill Wright Day" to honor the 50th anniversary of Bill's historic victory in the U.S. Amateur Public Links. Wright still teaches golf a few days a week at The Lakes at El Segundo (Calif.) course.