Donna Caponi

A golf prodigy who won the 1969 U.S. Women’s Open at age 19, and a regular on the LPGA Tour until the late 1980s.

Golf prodigy Donna Caponi learned the game from her father, Harry. In 1956, at the age of 11, she won the Los Angeles Junior title, joining the tour in 1965 and winning 24 tournaments.

A star golfer on the LPGA (Ladies’ Professional Golf Association) tour for years, she captured the U. S. Open in 1969 and 1970. Her career came alive again in 1979 with a victory at the LPGA Championships, followed by the Dinah Shore Colgate Open in 1980. She regained the LPGA title in 1981, the same year she became the third player to cross the $1 million career winnings mark, and broke the record for most consecutive holes without a bogey: 50.

After retiring in the 1988 from the professional golf circuit, Caponi went on to a successful career as a network television golf commentator for the Golf Channel, and was elected to the LPGA Hall of Fame in 2001 and into the World Golf Hall of Fame that same year. In 2009, she was the recipient of the PGA First Lady of Golf Award. She was inducted into the National Italian Sports Hall of Fame in 1981.