Two-time US Open victor Retief Goosen, three-time major champion Jan Stephenson and former Augusta National chairman Billy Payne were among five new World Golf Hall of Fame members announced Wednesday.
Stephenson's fellow 2019 inductees include South African multiple major victor Retief Goosen, former Augusta National chairman Billy Payne, Dennis Walters and the late Peggy Kirk Bell.
Goosen, a South African native, won a combined 19 PGA Tour and European Tour events, and 33 worldwide tournaments during his professional career.
Sydneysider Stephenson, now 66, won 16 LPGA Tour titles including her three majors in the 1970s and 1980s.
"We are excited to begin working with them as we gear up for the Induction Ceremony in Pebble Beach this June".
Jan Stephenson, AustraliaFemale Competitor Category In her first season on the LPGA Tour in 1974, Jan Stephenson was named LPGA's Rookie of the Year.
Who are the inductees for the 2019 World Golf Hall of Fame?
The five were among a group of 15 finalists that included Graham Marsh, Corey Pavin, Hal Sutton, Susie Maxwell Berning, Beverly Hanson, Sandra Palmer, Dottie Pepper, Jim Ferrier, Catherine Lacoste and Calvin Peete.
Known affectionately as "The Goose", Goosen sat within the Official World Golf Ranking's top 10 for more than 250 weeks from 2001 through 2007. Among her success on the golf course was her major titles and 16 wins on the LPGA Tour, while off the course she brought attention to the women's game as she posed for magazines - one of her most infamous shots being when she posed for naked in a bathtub covered by a pile of golf balls.
"I'm so emotional", Stephenson said.
Payne served as chairman at Augusta National and oversaw the Masters from 2006-2017, becoming the first to allow female members at Augusta. "He originated the Drive, Chip & Putt National Championship with the USGA and PGA of America and established the Asia-Pacific Amateur and Latin America Amateur tournaments, each offering guaranteed Masters" spots to the winners.
The reactions from the four living members ran the gamut of positive emotions Wednesday as they related their reactions when they found out they would be inducted next June near the site of the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.
"I've been crying, goosebumps, couldn't sleep", Stephenson said.
Payne said the task of the Augusta National chairman has evolved to more than simply running a private club and perhaps the world's most coveted tournament championship but still harkens back to the standards set by the club founders - both Hall of Fame members.
Kirk Bell, Payne and Walters are in under the lifetime achievement category.
"I think in my particular case, this honor is a salute to the collective contribution of the members of Augusta National and our really terrific staff", Payne said.
Walters was paralyzed in a golf cart accident at age 24 but the American became an elite disabled player, making more than 3,000 appearances around the world at clinics and special performances. He is one of only 11 honorary lifetime members of the PGA of America.