(born September 23, 1936) is an American
and golf administrator. She was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame
in 2001 in the Lifetime Achievement category, which honors people who have made an exceptional contribution to the sport in areas outside of tournament wins.
Bell was born in Wichita, Kansas
and took up golf at the age of ten, winning the girls' division in her first event - in a field of one. In 1950 she lost to Mickey Wright
in the semi-finals of the U.S. Girls' Junior, which was to remain her best result in a United States Golf Association
(USGA) event. She won the Broadmoor title three times and played for the United States in the Curtis Cup
in 1960 and 1962. In 1967 she shot 67 in the U.S. Women's Open
, which remained a record for 14 years.
Bell became a USGA volunteer in 1961, when she was a member of the Junior Championship Committee. In the 1970s she became a rules official. She later served on the Women's Committee and in 1987 was became the first woman on the Executive Committee. In 1996 she was elected as the 54th President of the USGA, the first woman to hold the senior office in American golf. During her tenure and subsequently she played a leading role in programs to take golf to youth, minorities and the disabled.