Christine Jones, Inducted 1993

Christine Jones

The following paean was made to Christine Jones by an unidentified admirer:

Ladies and guests of Columbia, we have a story to tell About a very sweet little gal and her name ain't Nell. She works her fingers to the bone to make your golf go well. Does she get a gold star for her efforts­? No, she usually gets plain hell. Now there's one who handles all these cares with efficiency not woes. The one we're speaking of – you've guessed it – Christine Jones.

Christine, Christine, Team Captain for a year. You've done a wonderful job, my dear. Your ready smile makes golf worthwhile.

When our game is off and we're not so good, Christine, Christine, we want to make amends, For all the trouble we've caused for you. We're grateful for your help and want to make amends. Christine, won't you please stand up and take a bow?

Christine Jones is an example of an individual who gained recognition among her peers; not for her golfing ability but for her devotion to junior golf in the Northwest. From 1943 to 1980 she served as a volunteer at her home club – Portland's Columbia-Edgewater Country Club – as well as with the Oregon Women's Golf Association, the PNGA, United States Golf Association, and Women's Trans-National Golf Association.

Her main focus during all those years of service to these associations was in the area of junior golf, especially girl's golf. From 1954 to 1960 Christine served as chairwoman for the Oregon Junior Girls' tournaments. In 1955 she was elected to the presidency of the Oregon Women's Golf Association. With regard to Christine's contributions to the PNGA, past President Carl Jonson wrote:

"I was well acquainted with her during my years of active service as a Director and President. She was a most gracious, hard-working and effective person in whatever areas of golf activity she undertook."

Taking on a Historic Role

In 1959, after the new PNGA constitution was adopted, Jones was named the inaugural chairwoman for the PNGA Women's Advisory Committee, a position she held for six years. Her principle duties included overseeing the PNGA Women's Amateur Championship and the PNGA Junior Girls' Championship. In 1959 then PNGA President Harold Weston wrote in the association's Annual Report:

"Her early grasp of the need for leadership in our Women's and Girls' Championships has had the necessary stimulating effect to make the future outlook for our distaff side most high."

After a full year on the job, Mrs. Jones conducted the most successful junior girls' event to date. In acknowledgment, Weston responded, "It is a fact that Mrs. Jones and her committee have done a superlative job of creating the necessary enthusiasm and interest in junior girls' golf to ensure its continuation as a PNGA-sponsored event."

In 1975 the PNGA Board of Directors recognized the outstanding service Jones had given to the association.

President L.L. Nagler wrote, "The PNGA has purchased a beautiful plaque bearing your name to be awarded each year to the PNGA Girls' Champion. We will proudly place this plaque in a prominent area in our office for everyone to see as a tribute to you for your many years of devoted service to our association. We fully realize the time and effort you put into this work and we are indeed grateful to you for putting the girls' championship on such a high level. Your devotion to the PNGA has not gone unnoticed, and now we have a constant reminder in our office of a wonderful lady who gave so much to help promote an excellent girls' program."

Upon stepping down from her volunteer duties with the PNGA, Christine did not retire from golf. Instead, she transferred her considerable energies to the USGA, where she served on Girls' Junior Championship Committees from 1966 to 1975. In 1974 she chaired the committee when the U.S. Girls' Junior Championship was held at Columbia Edgewater. At that tournament, a 17-year-old Nancy Lopez emerged as the national champion.

P.J. Boatwright Jr., head of the USGA's Championship Program, summarized Christine's service to his organization, "The usefulness of the Association has been made possible largely by the work of the Committees. We trust that your part in it has been gratifying to you. The benefit of your advice and service has been most welcome."

In her last year of service to golf, Jones served as President and Chairwoman for the Women's Trans-National Championship at Diamond Head Yacht & Country Club in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.

A Crowning Achievement

Christine Jones once described her most memorable moment in golf. "The most valuable honor I received during my 35-plus years of golf work was the George Bertz Award in 1964." The award, created by the Oregon Sports Writers and Sportscasters Association, was named after the long-time golf writer for the Oregon Journal. The presenter of Oregon's highest honor in golf described the recipient:

"Our George Bertz Memorial Award winner is an example that excellence on the links is not necessarily the outstanding criteria. This woman was never an outstanding player herself and yet, it was her unselfish devotion to all aspects of the junior program which helped develop many outstanding golfers."

In 1961 Christine Jones was the chairwoman of the OGA Women's Championship. She was also recognized for helping found Portland's Junior Golf Inter-Club Activities, a program inaugurated after the war in the late-1940's.

"They serve who also help our youth." That was the motto of this George Bertz Award winner: Mrs. Christine Jones. In 1993 Christine's achievements were further recognized when she was inducted into the Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Fame.

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