Class of 2010

Bill Eschenbrenner

Golf Professional / Teacher


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A former caddie at Worth Hills Municipal Golf Course in Fort Worth, a facility made famous by author Dan Jenkins, Eschenbrenner made a career path to professional golf through his association and friendship with many of the premier players in the Lone Star State, including fellow Texas Golf Hall of Fame members Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson.

”I was fortunate to have known top professionals, and I just wanted to be like them,” said Eschenbrenner. “Had I not had golf, I’m sure I would have been in the pool halls forever. I was friends with Ben Hogan, and knew him well. Just as I was a friend of Byron Nelson, and individuals like Ernie Vossler (1967 PGA Golf Professional of the Year), Fred Hawkins and Orville Moody. They guided me. The PGA of America card meant a lot to me, and being a member, I was able to set goals and pretty high standards. I always tried to give back, and that feeling comes from those PGA professionals who got me started.”

Eschenbrenner accrued numerous awards over the years, including PGA national awards such as the Bill Strausbaugh Award (1984), Quarter Century Club (1990), the Horton Smith Award (1994) and the Master Professional Award (1989). As a PGA competitor, he made the cut for the PGA Senior Championship and played in the U.S. Senior Open, both in 1992. Eschenbrenner was inducted into the PGA of America Hall of Fame in 2006.

Eschenbrenner, a PGA member since 1965, served as both a premier instructor and mentor to many of the game’s well-known players. He is credited by Lee Trevino for helping him gain a PGA Tour berth. Eschenbrenner helped Trevino attain PGA membership in the late 1960's, during a period when such membership was required to compete on the PGA Tour.

The list of Tour professionals under Eschenbrenner's tutelage featured eight PGA Tour players, including 2002 PGA Champion Rich Beem, a former PGA assistant professional at El Paso (Texas) Country Club, where Eschenbrenner served 35 years as PGA director of golf and five years as consultant.

The developer of a city-wide junior golf program in El Paso, Eschenbrenner also served on the board of the El Paso Sun Bowl and Sun Carnival Association. In 1974, he founded the NCAA College All-American Golf Tournament (Now called the Sun Bowl College All-America Golf Classic, the only individual golf tournament approved by the NCAA), an event that has returned golf scholarships to participating college programs since its inception. Past tournament champions include: Tiger Woods, Jerry Pate, David Duval, Davis Love III, Matt Kuchar, Scott Simpson, Webb Simpson, and Sam Burns.

From 1976-77, Eschenbrenner served as president of the Sun County PGA Section, was District 12 Director for the national PGA Board of Directors (1995-97), and was a past board member of the Southwest PGA Section from 1965 until 1974. He is one of the most respected instructors at PGA education seminars and employment workshops.

Birthplace: Fort Worth, Texas

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