1989 PPA Hall of Fame Inductee
Dick Florin

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Florin with the 1976 World Putting Championship trophy.

Dick Florin
Fayetteville, GA
1989 Inductee
Player Category

Born: July 11, 1945

Birthplace: Akron, Ohio

Residence: Fayetteville, Georgia

Education: University of Akron, 1969

Occupation: Banking Executive

Turned Professional: 1963

Major PPA Tour Victories: 1970 World Putting Championship; 1976 World Putting Championship; 1983 Winners Invitational Championship.

Other PPA Tour Victories and Accomplishments: 1967 Toledo (OH) Open; 1968 Lynchburg (VA) Open; 1968 Atlanta (GA) Open; 1970 Fayetteville (NC) Open; 1970 Charleston (SC) Open; 1972 Charlotte (NC) Open; 1972 Mobile (AL) Open; 1974 Chamblee (GA) Open; 1975 Marietta (GA) Open; 1977 Columbus (OH) Open; 1978 Mobile (AL) Open; 1978 Asheville (NC) Open; 1981 Jacksonville (FL) Open; 1981 Greenville (SC) Open.

Lifetime Money Winnings: $68,685.35; PPA Television Money Winnings $31,200; 1970 PPA Leading Money Winner; 1976 PPA Leading Money Winner.

PPA Television Record: 1966, 1971, 1976, 1979, 1980 (9-4 record).

Other PPA Tour Highlights: 1989 PPA Hall of Fame; 1984 Outstanding Male Putter for Putt-Putt Golf Courses 30-year anniversary; 1970's Putter of the Decade; Pros Players Committee member, 1967-68; 1983 Greatest of the Great selection; 1971 Putter of the Year; Semi-finalist 1971 World Putting Championship; Runner-up, 1980 Super Putters Championship; Runner-up, 1972 BG Invitational; 3rd, 1982 Southern Open; 3rd, 1980 Western Open; 3rd, 1970 National Invitational; 3rd, 1967 Northern Open.

One of the world's most celebrated competitors, Dick Florin forged to national prominence in 1970 when he rolled in a 22-foot hole-in-one on the first hole of sudden-death to defeat defending champion Rick Smith for the World Putting Championship in Freeport, Bahamas. Florin repeated the feat in 1976 at Columbus, Ohio, with a 3 and 2 victory over Australian National Champion Manuel Serrano.

"The 1976 championship probably meant more to me because more of my peers were in attendance and because the 1976 field had more of an international flavor," said Florin, who in 1983 added a third major title to his career portfolio by winning the PPA Winners Invitational at Hoover, Alabama. In 23 years of professional competition, he won 17 national tour events, 38 other PPA sanctioned tournaments and finished second, an overall 52 times.

Although he appeared destined for greatness from the outset of a brilliant amateur career in Northern Ohio, Florin's professional rise to fame began after his 1969 marriage to Evelyn Strickland, a southern-bred putting queen who dominated the women's game for three decades. Together, the Florins became national and international starts by representing Putt-Putt Golf Courses of America, Inc. and the Professional Putters Association in exhibition matches throughout the United States and Japan. "She taught me how to persevere and not get down on myself," Florin once said of his wife and putting champion. "We are very good for each other."

A devoted husband and father, Florin ended his playing career in 1985 to devote more time to daughters, Felicia and Carmen. "For half our lives, Evelyn and I planned for the next tournament and the next. And then we found ourselves planning for the girl's softball games," said Florin, hailed not only as one of the sport's greatest players, but also as an international ambassador of the game. He was enshrined as the fifth man into the PPA Hall of Fame on June 30, 1989 in ceremonies at Fayetteville, North Carolina; home of Putt-Putt Golf Course of America, Inc. and the Professional Putters Association.



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