Debbie Savoy Morel Receives the 2023 Pierre-Nadon Prize
Forget retirement for Debbie Savoy Morel, winner of the 2023 Pierre-Nadon Prize!
Montréal, December 4, 2023 – If there's one word that doesn't exist in the real world, or even in the vocabulary of Debbie Savoy Morel, winner of the 2023 Pierre-Nadon Prize, it's... retirement. So much the better!
After 25 years as head pro at Golf Le Mirage, even if she has taken a step back from her day-to-day responsibilities to slow down a little, there's no question of her stopping sharing her passion.
When they acquired Céline Dion's property, current shareholders Mario Messier and Serge Savard kept the popular Debbie associated with Le Mirage by naming her Emeritus Professional. She continues to specialize in teaching and remains available 40 days per season to play with members, to their delight.
She is much appreciated and is still a contributor Au19e TV show, in print and on the Internet.
To all this, she added courses at the Ki-8-Eb, as she has an attachment to this facility after 20 years as a member. She also now does a provincial tour of visits on request. Last summer, she visited the Royal Montréal for its 150th anniversary and Club Laval-sur-le-sur-Lac with Maude-Aimée LeBlanc as a professional. La Tempête and Royal Québec are among the locations already confirmed for 2024.
Let's forget about retirement, which is fine, Debbie being as relevant as ever.
A Reference in Everything and Everywhere
Debbie Savoy Morel's commitment to volunteer work is equally admirable.
Name the organization? Whether at Golf Québec, Golf Canada, the PGA of Québec and the PGA of Canada or the Jocelyne Bourassa Foundation, her sharp expertise and sense of teamwork are called upon to sit on decision-making committees for the advancement of her sport. She also mentors young professionals across the country.
It's this generosity of her time that has earned Debbie this year's Pierre-Nadon Prize in recognition of her exceptional dedication.
This latest award of many prestigious accolades joins three inductions into Halls of Fame, including the Québec Golf Hall of Fame.
"I've had the privilege of working with and learning from Céline and René (Angelil) with the immense stature we all recognize, as well as being able to count on the support of General Manager René Noël, who trusted me," says the always meticulously prepared award winner.
The Art of Catching Up with Time
A New Brunswicker by birth and La Tuquoise by adoption since childhood, with Jean-Marie Laforge as her first mentor at the friendly Haute-Mauricie nine-hole course, Debbie Savoy Morel has followed an atypical path to exceptional success.
A graduate of Bishop's University, she previously spent ten years in employee management at the CIP paper mill in Trois-Rivières.
With two children at home, Shawn and Kimberley, of whom she is so proud, and an NHL referee husband, Denis, always lugging suitcases to the four corners of America to officiate 1,200 or more games in the National Hockey League, the transition to a full-time career in golf, and therefore as a livelihood, waited until the age of 40.
An elite amateur golfer who spent thirteen years in the Canadian top ten, she was repeatedly selected as a member of the Québec and Canadian teams, where she was a teammate of four-time LPGA winner Lorie Kane. She represented the country at world championships, the Commonwealth Games, and a British Championship at St. Andrews.
As a younger competitor, she was one of the participants in the Montréal launch of La Canadienne, won by her friend Jocelyne Bourassa 50 years ago.
The tribute is a testament to the soaring success of her golf career, which began exactly thirty years ago this year as a pioneer in the creation of the first Sport-études program at Les Estacades in Cap-de-la-Madeleine, and led to her promotion to Le Mirage, where she became the first woman in the country at the helm of a 36-hole course.
Also on her extensive list of achievements is the prestigious award of Head Professional of the Year, the PGA of Canada's top recognition for its 3,100 members.
It's Not Over Yet
With such an impressive track record, it's fair to say that Debbie Savoy Morel has made up for lost time, and the good news is that it's not over yet.
We'll leave it to the appropriate parties to make their own announcements, but one well-known business leader is working to bring together influential colleagues to see if a structure can be developed to help more of our young talent get ahead. You won't be surprised to learn that Debbie was invited to join another advisory committee!
Following in the footsteps of Jocelyne Bourassa, Adrien Bigras, Diane Dunlop-Hébert, Michel Bolduc, Denis Messier, Roger H. Legaut, Diane Barabé, Dave Ross, and Maurice Dagenais, Debbie Savoy Morel becomes the 20th winner of the Pierre-Nadon Prize. Congratulations!
About Pierre Nadon
Journalist and editor-in-chief at La Presse and Le Montréal Matin, with a stint at Radio-Canada sports in between, Pierre Nadon was a passionate and erudite golfer. He was also editor of Golf Canada's high-quality French-language magazine before leaving us far too soon, taken by cancer on June 15, 2005.
Thus, journalist friends (Michel Lacroix, Denis Messier, Daniel Caza, Réal Labbé, André Rousseau, and your author), in collaboration with Golf Québec, then headed by Bob Dion, created an award to commemorate his commitment.
About Golf Québec – Initiate passions, build dreams
Founded in 1920, Golf Québec is the provincial sport federation whose mission is to increase participation in golf, to develop excellence in golf, and to promote and govern the game of golf. Golf Québec provides discovery and introduction programs such as First Tee – Premier départ Québec as well as core services such as the Rules of Golf, Course Ratings, World Handicap System, and the Québec Golf Hall of Fame. In addition, Golf Québec conducts regional and provincial championships to bring the local golf enthusiasts to surpass themselves and eventually reach the upper spheres of professional tours. For more information, please visit https://www.golfquebec.org.
Jean-Pierre Beaulieu, Executive Director
514 252-3345, ext. 3732 – firstname.lastname@example.org
Governance Assistant and Translator
514 252-3345, ext. 3745 – email@example.com