The United States Golf Association has announced that Robin Burke, of Houston, Texas, has been selected as captain of the 2016 USA Curtis Cup Team. The 39th Match will be conducted June 10-12 at Dun Laoghaire Golf Club near Dublin, Ireland.
The Curtis Cup Match is an eight-female team competition between the USA and Great Britain and Ireland (GB&I). The biennial contest dates to 1932 and is conducted by the USGA and the Ladies Golf Union (LGU). The USA won the most recent playing of the Curtis Cup Match, defeating GB&I, 13-7, at St. Louis (Mo.) Country Club in June 2014. The USA holds an overall 28-7-3 Match record.
“To captain the 2016 Curtis Cup Team and represent the United States of America and the USGA in Europe where the game began is an honor and a privilege,” said Burke. “When I was selected to play on the 1998 Curtis Cup Team, it was the most gratifying experience in my golf career. My captain, Barbara McIntire, made a huge impression on my game and in the way I conduct myself both in and out of golf. She is a great player and person.”
“We are very happy to add Robin to the impressive list of Curtis Cup players who have gone on to serve as captain,” said Dot Paluck, chairman of the USGA Women’s Committee. “As inscribed on the trophy, the Curtis Cup Match has long served to stimulate friendly rivalry among women golfers. Robin will undoubtedly carry on this fine tradition.”
Burke was the runner-up in the 1997 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, falling to Silvia Cavalleri at Brae Burn Country Club in West Newton, Mass. The following year, she was a member of the USA Team that took a 10-8 victory over GB&I at The Minikahda Club in Minneapolis, Minn. Burke paired with Virginia Derby Grimes for two foursomes victories and lost her singles match.
Burke has competed in more than 35 USGA individual championships, including three U.S. Women’s Opens. She has reached the semifinals of the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship three times, and in 2003, she took stroke-play medalist honors in the Women’s Mid-Amateur at Long Cove Club in Hilton Head Island, S.C. Her 38 Women’s Mid-Amateur match-play victories are tied for third-most in championship history with four-time champion Meghan Stasi, trailing only past Curtis Cup captains Ellen Port (58 victories; 2014 captain) and Carol Semple Thompson (56 victories; 2006, 2008 captain). Additionally, Burke has played for Texas in four USGA Women’s State Team Championships, helping her team to runner-up finishes in 1995 and 2011.
Burke won the 2001 Ione D. Jones/Doherty Championship, as well as the 1992 and 2001 Southern Women’s Amateur Championships. She won the 1990 and 1991 Texas Women’s Amateur Championships, and she is an eight-time Greater Houston Women's City Amateur champion.
Burke is married to two-time major champion and World Golf Hall of Fame member Jack Burke Jr. The Burkes own Houston's famed Champions Golf Club where Robin Burke serves as vice president. The club has hosted numerous professional and amateur events, including the 1967 Ryder Cup (won by the USA), the 1969 U.S. Open Championship (won by Orville Moody), the 1993 U.S. Amateur Championship (won by John Harris), the 1998 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship (won by Derby Grimes) and five PGA Tour Championships.
“My husband played on five Ryder Cup Teams, was a Ryder Cup captain twice and an assistant captain to Hal Sutton in 2004,” said Burke. “Hopefully, this new responsibility will provide me equal talking time over dinner! I am excited about calling my friend Ellen Port and seeing if she kept good notes. I look forward to taking it all in."