LPGA Founders and Money Lists 2019

What is the LPGA?

In 1950, the dreams and visions of 13 courageous women who wanted to play professional golf became a reality with the founding of the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA). The LPGA is one of the longest-running women’s professional sports associations in the world.

The LPGA maintains a strong focus on charity through its tournaments, its grassroots junior and women’s programs, and its LPGA Foundation. The LPGA is under the guidance of Commissioner Michael Whan and is headquartered in Daytona Beach, Fla.

Who Founded the LPGA?

The 13 LPGA founders are:

  • Alice Bauer
  • Patty Berg
  • Bettye Danoff
  • Helen Detweiler
  • Marlene Bauer Hagge
  • Helen Hicks, Opal Hill
  • Betty Jameson
  • Sally Sessions
  • Marilynn Smith
  • Shirley Spork
  • Louise Suggs
  • Babe Zaharias

LPGA Money Lists 2019

According to the most recent LPGA money lists, the median income for all players is $141,428. The top 10 percent of players earned a median of $1,320,900 and played in at least 20 tournaments. Many LPGA players rarely see even $30,000 in a season.

Here are the LPGA Money Lists for the Top Earning LPGA Players in 2019:

LPGA Money Lists 2019
Img source: LPGA.com

There’s a bit of disparity between the earnings of the LPGA vs the PGA. Let me give you some facts on the gender gap in prize funds for golf tournaments.

The PGA’s 29th QBE Shootout, founded by tournament host and World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman, is held at Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Fla., every year for the PGA’s last event in December.

The prize fund for the PGA? $3.1 million. The prize fund for the LPGA? $1 million.

In 2014, the last year in which both organizations’ tax documents are available, the PGA Tour Inc. brought in $1.075 billion in total revenue with $364.8 million coming from TV rights and an additional $290 million from sponsors. That same year, the LPGA earned $102.8 million in total revenue, with $14.6 million coming from TV and $5.8 million from sponsors.

The obvious wage gap might suggest that the PGA Tour is better than the LPGA. But, if you take the average of the top 10 in scoring and in birdies on both tours, you will find that the best men and the best women in the game play equally.

The top 10 players in scoring average on the LPGA Tour are shooting a 69.76 per round and the top 10 in birdie average are making 4.36 per round. The top 10 in scoring on the PGA Tour are firing a 69.34 per round and the top 10 in birdies are dropping 4.61 every 18 holes.

However, talented golfer, Wie has a total estimated net worth of $12 million. According to LPGA, her career earnings is $6,785,731. She stands at #33 in Rolex rankings with five career victories.

Who is the Richest Female Golfer?

Over the course of her 20-year career on the LPGA, Karrie Webb has won 56 professional championships, 40 of them coming on the LPGA tour. Among her seven major championship wins are two U.S. Women’s Open Victories. Webb has racked up $18.5 million in career winnings.

LPGA Money Richest Player Karrie Webb
Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports Images

However, back in 2009, Annika Sorenstam was considered to be the richest female golfer who earned $12 million before taking off her glove to retire (Click here to read about my Q&A interviewwith Annika). Her resume includes 89 career wins, including 10 Majors, eight Player of the Year awards and $23 million in career prize money.

Annika Sorenstam

What Tee Does the LPGA Play From?

The LPGA Tour sets up its own tees at each tournament stop. The average yardage for an LPGA Tour golf course is between 6,200 and 6,600 yards.

What Are The Goals of the LPGA Foundation?

The LPGA Foundation was established in 1991. It’s mission? To help young girls and women play the game of golf through encouragement and inspiration.

The LPGA Foundation has four main goals:

  1. To develop and maintain junior golf programs across the country
  2. To develop and maintain scholarship programs for junior golfers
  3. To maintain a financial assistance fund for those in the golf industry
  4. To conduct research and develop educational activities related to golf instruction.