A graduate of Central College and current head coach of the University of Northern Iowa women’s and men’s golf teams has received a national award for his contributions to golf. John Bermel, a 1984 graduate, has been awarded the Labron Harris, Sr. Award, presented by E-Z GO in cooperation with the PGA of America, and the Golf Coaches Association of America.
The award is presented to the college or high school coach and PGA professional whose support of the game has helped ensure the continued growth of the game of golf.
Bermel became the head golf professional at the Pheasant Ridge Golf Course in Cedar Falls in 1995, the same year he was named head men’s golf coach at UNI. While at Central, he was a four-time All-Iowa Conference honoree, helping the Dutch win league championships all four years and post four top-ten finishes at the NCAA Division III Championships.
Since graduating from Central, Bermel has worked as a golf professional at several courses in Iowa, while also assembling an impressive resume as a player. He is a four-time Iowa Section PGA champion, finishing second five times. He’s competed in four PGA Tour events and two PGA Championships.
Bermel was named the Iowa teacher of the year by Golf Digest in 2009 and the Iowa Section PGA teacher of the year in 2000; and also served on the Iowa Section PGA board of directors from 2000 to 2002.