New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - The PGA of America and the LPGA Tour made a joint announcement on Thursday in which the PGA will take over the LPGA Championship and rename it the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.
"The LPGA Championship has a very proud 60-year tradition and I couldn't be more excited to carry this forward in an even bigger way with the partnership of KPMG, the PGA of America and NBC. The Championship will now reach even greater levels of global exposure, player opportunities, and community impact," said LPGA commissioner Michael Whan. "This event will change lives - both for the female professionals that will compete in the KPMG Women's PGA Championship, and for the women it will impact in both the women's leadership summit and community initiative."
The change will take place in 2015. The event will remain as one of the LPGA Tour's five majors, and will have a purse of $3.5 million, which is a significant increase from this year's purse of $2.25 million.
In the first year of the agreement, the championship will be played at the Westchester Country Club, which was a long-time stop for the PGA Tour.
The LPGA Championship began in 1955 and past champions include Hall of Fame members Mickey Wright, Betsy Rawls, Kathy Whitworth, Nancy Lopez, Juli Inkster, Annika Sorenstam and Se Ri Pak.
"The majors in our sport are so big. They present big challenges, big moments and can have a big impact on the careers of players and the history of the sport," said Sorenstam, a three-time winner of the LPGA Championship. "This new partnership between the LPGA, PGA of America and KPMG is big in every way. The women on tour are being given a special gift in the form of huge prize money, greater exposure and a bigger career impact. And just as exciting for me is KPMG's focus on making sure this major also creates big moments for women outside of the game as well, especially in business. I am very happy for everyone involved!"
Westchester will mark the 17th course on which this championship has been contested. The championship has been in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast portion of the United States since 1990.
It was in Maryland from 1990-93 and again from 2005-09 at two different courses. DuPont Country Club in Delaware was the host from 1994-2004. Since 2010, the championship has been in New York, where Locust Hill hosted the event the last four years. Going forward, the goal is for the championship to rotate to different courses around the country.
Inbee Park will defend her title at the final Wegmans LPGA Championship starting August 14 at Monroe Golf Club in Pittsford, New York.