Don was lured into croquet by Ned Prentis, an old friend and golfing companion at the Westhampton Country Club. Croquet at the Westhampton Mallet Club fascinated Don, although he admits his perseverance was sorely tested as he was beaten by EVERYONE for most of his first two years. Jack Osborn, visiting one weekend in Westhampton, taught Don the 4-ball break, a revolutionary tactic in those days. and Don was further hooked.
Since winning his first tournament at the Green Gables Croquet Club in Spring Lake, NJ, Don has been a faithful devotee of croquet and has collected over 40 trophies in the past 15 years. His wife, Connie. has also been caught up in the croquet fever and spends as much time as she can on the courts. Playing together, they won the Westhampton Invitational Doubles this year.
A former World War II fighter pilot who flew P-40s and P-51s, Don is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame. As persistent as Don is on a croquet court, he is more so in business, having founded and nurtured two companies in his almost fifty years experience. First, as a Broadway show press agent who made tie jump into public relations and then, for the past 23 years as president of his TV specialized time brokerage firm. Don represents such national clients as Unilever, Bristol-Myer Squibb, Conair, Fedders and Toyota. In the past three years he has been joined by his two daughters, Lissa and Diana, in a new venture, Cromwell Marketing Company, a new product development firm.
After serving on the USCA Management Committee since 1984, Don recently retired as the USCA's Vice Fresident of the Mid-Atiantic Region. He now serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Croquet Foundation of America.
It is with sincere appreciation for his proven commitment and all he has done for our sport that we welcome Don into the U.S. Croquet Hall of Fame.
Don Degnan was inducted into the United States Croquet Hall of Fame in 1992.