|James Finegan, Sr.|
*Golf experiences & insights
Philadelphia Golf Legends: Philadelphia CC's James Finegan, Sr.
James Finegan, Sr. is widely regarded as Philadelphia’s golf historian.
The Villanova, Pa. resident and Philadelphia Country Club member penned “A Centennial Tribute to Golf in Philadelphia.” It marks only one of Finegan’s many contributions to golf literature. He is the latest figure to be profiled in the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s Legends video series.
Finegan learned golf at the Pennsylvania Railroad Club (now the site of Chester Valley Golf Club). He caddied at clubs such as Greenacres Country Club and Tully-Secane Country Club. Finegan excelled at the collegiate level, occupying the No. 1 slot on La Salle’s team for four years. As a player, Finegan holds three club championships at his home course and the 1986 Pine Valley Senior Club Championship. He also captured the Association’s Father & Son in consecutive years (1973-74) alongside son James, Jr.
Its his work off the golf course that elevates Finegan into celebrated ranks. Aside from the Centennial book, Finegan also wrote the official history of Aronimink Golf Club and Pine Valley Golf Club, respectively. In recognition of his volumes on courses in Ireland and Scotland, Finegan received the 2006 USGA Herbert Warren Wind Book Award. He is also the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s 2010 Distinguished Service Award recipient.
Finegan spent 45 years in advertising, starting as a copywriter and eventually earning an executive role. He and his wife of 59 years Harriet have three children: James, Jr., John and Megwin.
Launched in 2010, the Legends video series features prominent local players recalling their experiences and accomplishments both on and off the golf course. This is the ninth installment in the series overall. O. Gordon Brewer, Jr. of Pine Valley GC, Paul Erhardt, III of Cavaliers CC, Herman J. Fry of Reading CC, Blaise Giroso of Fieldstone GC, John Guenther, Jr. of Heidelberg CC, John Markel of Berkshire CC, Lincoln Roden, III of Huntingdon Valley CC and Don Weiland of Phoenixville CC were also spotlighted.