Hall of Fame

Leslie Greis
Leslie E. Greis

Graduation Year


Induction Year


Hall of Fame

Harvard Athletic Achievements

Greis was a three-year letterwinner as a member of the men’s varsity team (Harvard women’s varsity golf did not start until 1993). She was the first and only woman to play on the men’s golf team for Harvard. Greis won the 1979 Massachusetts Women’s Intercollegiate Championship and was an Ivy League Silver Anniversary Honor Roll selection.

Hall of Fame

Remembering Harvard Athletics

Thank you so much for the honor of being selected to the Harvard Varsity Club Hall of Fame. In 1976 when I entered the college as a freshman, there was no women’s golf team. Motivated by my desire to play competitively and encouraged by the golf coach and team captain, I headed to The Country Club in Brookline to compete for a place on the men’s varsity golf team. Playing from the same tees, I kept up with enough of my colleagues to become the first and only woman to make the team in the university’s history. It wasn’t until almost 20 years later that interest and support for a women’s golf team became a reality. One of my favorite memories during my four years on the ‘men’s’ team was when I was the low scorer in an intra-team qualifying to determine the order for the upcoming tri-college match. The next day I stood on the first tee at the Brae Burn Country Club and, as a small group gathered on the club’s veranda, I hit the first ball as the No. 1 Harvard player in a three-way intercollegiate match. And, of course, there were less than serious moments, like the year-end team dinners and the Harvard-Dartmouth match where each team decided in advance to have a contest for the most outrageously dressed squad – lots of garish plaids and competing colors – it was quite a sight!

Many thanks have to go to my teammates who supported me and made what could have been an awkward situation into a comfortable and fun experience. They treated my contribution with equanimity – and with camaraderie rare in individual sport. Many thanks and warm thoughts go to Alex, Spence, Bob, George, Jim, Carroll, and many others.
Despite the challenges of weather-shortened golf seasons and of academic responsibilities, my college golf career laid the groundwork for a post-graduation pursuit of a professional golf career. While cashing checks was a great thrill, the attainment of an LPGA card remained elusive, and I began my corporate career after three years on the min-tour circuits. My experience, however, qualified me for membership in another elusive group – women graduates who have played a sport professionally.

A description of my athletic experience of Harvard would not be complete without mention of the fun I had playing intramural House sports and playing on the women’s basketball team. In fact, when Bob Glatz informed me of my election to the Hall of Fame, we were at the Harvard Club attending this year’s women’s basketball team breakup dinner. In my first varsity game, I set a record for most points scored in a single game (29). Although this record was tied, it was never broken until the rules of the game were changed to allow three-point shots. Although official university record keeping for women’s sports was just becoming institutionalized during my years as an undergraduate, the lack of written history and statistics for many women’s sports is unfortunate. I encourage the Varsity Club to look back and try to recognize the contributions of my teammates and predecessors in many of the women’s sports which have a long history at the University.

Thank you again for this special honor – joining the Hall of Fame with the likes of golfers Alex Vic and Bobby Jones is daunting. I am thrilled.