Chris Borders, the retired general manager of the Atlanta Athletic Club, has been inducted into the Georgia Golf Hall of Fame.
Borders, who lives in Woodstock, joined famed architect Bob Cupp, PGA professional Stephen Keppler and longtime amateur competitor Frank Eldridge in the 25th annual induction ceremonies at the Atlanta Athletic Club. Borders is the first club manager inducted by the organization.
Borders retired in March 2013 after serving 35 years at the club.
"This is pretty special, especially since it’s happening at the Atlanta Athletic Club,” Borders said. “To receive this honor and have it here could not be more special.”
Borders was born in Perry and grew up in the small town of Reynolds, where he was a three-year letterman in golf. Four of the members of that golf team attended the induction ceremony for Borders. By the time he was 14, Borders was running the town’s nine-hole golf course.
He attended Mercer University on a partial golf scholarship and served as an officer with the U.S. Army in Vietnam. While in the service he oversaw three Army courses in Hawaii and constructed and operated a driving range in Vietnam.
After returning home, Borders was recruited by U.S. Senator Sam Nunn to be the general manager at Houston Lake Country Club in Perry. He stayed two years before leaving for Florida State University to obtain a degree in hotel and restaurant administration.
After graduation, Borders went to work at the Atlanta Athletic Club and served in various capacities for the next 11 years. He helped the club host the 1976 U.S. Open, the 1981 PGA Championship, the 1982 Junior World Cup and 1984 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship.
In 1986 Borders was named general manager of Horseshoe Bend Country Club in Roswell. Two years later he joined the Atlanta Athletic Club and was involved in the 1990 U.S. Women’s Open, the 2002 U.S. Junior Amateur and 2001 and 2011 PGA Championships.
“He is a planner,” said Rick Anderson, the PGA director of golf at the Atlanta Athletic Club. “He likes to think things though. We always thought there was nothing we couldn’t handle.”
Borders was at the helm during extensive renovations of the club’s two golf courses and the clubhouse. He conceived and had a critical role in the creation of the Bobby Jones Room, which houses a sizeable archive of Jones memorabilia. He was also instrumental in forging relationships with clubs in Great Britain and Ireland.
“Chris has an ability to organize things,” said Jim Thorne, a former president of the Atlanta Athletic Club. “He knows what works and what doesn’t work. It makes a big difference.”
Borders became known for his professional development and mentoring with the Club Managers Association of America. He was named Club Manager of the Year in 1992.
“I’ve had so many people who have lifted me up and helped my career,” Borders said. “And the Atlanta Athletic Club provided me with an amazing workplace.”
Borders and wife Pat have been married for 44 years.