Melrose to receive GCBAA’s Don A. Rossi Award

Former Toro CEO will be honored during the 2018 Golf Industry Show in San Antonio.


The Golf Course Builders Association of America (GCBAA) has selected Ken Melrose as its recipient of the prestigious Don A. Rossi Award, in recognition of his significant contributions to the golf industry.

Ken-MelroseMelrose was named president of The Toro Co. in 1981, and was elected CEO in 1983.  Under his leadership, the company furthered its position and growth in the golf industry with innovative products and service support, along with its enduring commitment to many philanthropic and research efforts.  Melrose was also instrumental in helping establish The Toro Foundation, which continues today in supporting many community and industry causes around the world. 

Following his retirement from Toro in 2005, Melrose formed Leading by Serving, whose mission is to advance the principles of servant leadership in organizations.  He also remains an active supportive of the golf industry and its future growth.  In 2012, he established The Melrose Leadership Academy with the Environmental Institute for Golf to help support the professional development of GCSAA member superintendents providing scholarships to attend the Golf Industry Show.

Throughout his Toro career, Melrose was a fierce champion of the golf business and industry, and remains so to this day. “Ken embodies exactly what the Don Rossi award represents,” said Justin Apel, GCBAA executive director.  “He has given so much to our industry, and is most deserving of this recognition.”

The Rossi award is given by the GCBAA to honor individuals who have made significant contributions to the game of golf and its growth and who have inspired others by example. It is named for Don A. Rossi, who served as executive director of the National Golf Foundation from 1970 to 1983, was instrumental in forming the National Golf Course Owners Association and served as executive director of the GCBAA from 1984 to 1990.  

The Don A. Rossi Award will be given Feb. 6 at the 2018 Golf Industry Show, to be held in San Antonio, during the GCBAA Opening Reception.