Rockford Park District
Helping People Enjoy Life!


2019 Jane Lyons Memorial Scholarship Awarded

Natalie Hooper.jpg

ROCKFORD, IL - The Jane Lyons Memorial Scholarship for young women was established within the Rockford Park District Foundation to assist girls who enjoy playing the game of golf and who are pursuing an undergraduate degree.

This scholarship was made possible by the great generosity of Jane Lyons, who left nearly $1.2 million to the Foundation to endow the scholarship and provide funding for girls golf programming in the Rockford Park District. One $2,500 scholarship will be provided annually, and is renewable for up to four years for a cumulative total of $10,000. The first scholarship was awarded in 2015.

Applicant Eligibility

  • Female students who enjoy playing the game of golf

  • Residents of Winnebago/ Boone County or a participant in a Rockford Park District golf program

  • Enrolled or plan to enroll in a full-time two- or four-year degree program

At the Rockford Park District Board of Commissioners meeting on Tuesday, Natalie Hooper was awarded the 2019 Jane Lyons Memorial Scholarship. Natalie is a senior, and recently graduated from Rockford Lutheran High School, where she was an all-conference and all-state athlete in golf for four years. She has been accepted at Western Illinois University with the opportunity to play division 1 golf beginning in the fall. Natalie has been a participant and volunteer in a variety of Rockford Park District golf programs and tournaments. In 2018, she participated in the Jane Lyons Elite program, which provided her the opportunity to play some of the best courses in the Midwest. “Receiving this scholarship is an honor, because it’s continuing the legacy of a great woman. I will work to carry on Jane’s love and passion for the game of golf while building relationships in the golf community,” said Natalie Hooper.

About Jane Lyons

Jane Lyons was more than a golf enthusiast, although golf played an integral role in her life, and kept her young. Jane played in the Women’s Classic Golf Championship for more than 60 years. She also played in the first Girls Junior Classic, winning the C Flight in 1941. The Women’s Classic and Girls Junior were the only sporting competitions open to women at that time. Jane graduated from West High School in 1945, earned a B.A. from the University of Arizona, and received her M.A.T. degree from Rockford College. She was dedicated to serving children throughout her career, and committed to women participating in athletics. She was president of the Women’s Athletic Association at the University of Arizona, and received the Outstanding Senior Woman Award.

Mike Costello