O’Brien McGarey to receive prestigious GCBAA honor

O’Brien McGarey to receive prestigious GCBAA honor

McGarey will become the seventh recipient of the Perry O. Dye Service Award at the 2021 Summer Meeting.


In recognition of over three decades of his commitment to the Golf Course Builders Association of America and its membership, O’Brien McGarey, Dye Designs, will receive the prestigious Perry O. Dye Service Award at the Summer Meeting in August 2021 in Asheville, North Carolina.

McGarey is credited by many as working alongside Perry Dye as Dye served as GCBAA President during pivotal and progressive times for the association. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Dye, McGarey and the GCBAA board of directors led the association to creating and initiating many of the programs that are still in place today. Under the duo’s guidance, the association was led in a positive direction with initiatives to align with allied associations.

O’Brien was involved with other board of directors in the creation of the Charter Membership categories, as well as assisted in proctoring and facilitating exams for the newly created Builder Certification Program. He was instrumental in organizing a joint meeting of the association with a 1991 PGA Championship that eventually evolved into the annual association summer meeting. McGarey volunteered on the association’s charitable arm and helped grow the Sticks for Kids Program to over 500 programs around the country. When the association partnered with the China and Asia Golf Shows, McGarey, along with the Dye Designs International team, assisted the association with their international footprint. McGarey and his family have recruited and mentored countless members to join the association through the years.

“The Perry O. Dye service award recognizes fellow members who, much like Perry himself, behind the curtains and limelight dedicated countless hours to support the betterment of the organization,” GCBAA President Judd Duininck of Duininck Golf said. “They selflessly put the association at the forefront, investing in the future of the game of golf and the mission of the GCBAA. It is only fitting to recognize O’Brien McGarey as the association celebrates its 50th anniversary.”

“Before the board of directors hired their first full-time executive director under the leadership of Perry Dye, most of the history was passed down as campfire stories,” GCBAA executive director Justin Apel said. “Looking back, each newsletter, board agenda, and minutes consistently showed the dedication of the Dye family and O’Brien McGarey to the growth of the association making it what it is today.”

The Perry O. Dye Service Award is given periodically by the GCBAA to recognize an exceptional member of the GCBAA. Recipients have shown themselves to be loyal members of the association, who unselfishly contribute above and beyond the “call of duty” their time and influence to foster positive changes and strive for continuous improvement of the association. The award is named after Perry Dye, who during the early development years of the GCBAA exemplified these characteristics when he provided financial assistance to stabilize the GCBAA during its inception and early years.

This is the seventh time the Perry O. Dye Service Award has been granted. Previous recipients include Perry Dye in 2005, Jim Kirchdorfer Sr. (2006), Rick Elyea (2010), Steve Christman (2013), Tommy Sasser (2015) and Dennis Wagner (2018).