Gordon Anderson – Player – Inducted 2013
It would be a great disservice to Gordon Anderson to define him by the number of Ontario, Canadian, US and world squash titles he has won. They are only a part – albeit an important part – of this man.
Gordon’s roots are firmly in Toronto, Ontario where at the age of 12, he took his first squash lesson at the Toronto Cricket, Skating & Curling Club. That began a 50 year love affair with the game where he wore many hats. As a player, he holds world titles in singles, hardball and doubles, something only a very few squash players have ever achieved. In all, he has won five world titles, one Mexican, title, 17 U.S. Championships, seven Canadian Championships. In fact, he won the inaugural Canadian Open Softball title in 1974 the same year that he won the Hardball title. Quite a feat to win both in the same year. And he counts five Ontario Championships to his impressive list of achievements. The term, “fair play” epitomizes Gordon’s on court and off court behaviour. His ready smile and sense of humour together with his superb racquet skills made him one of the most popular players on the Professional circuit in the ‘70s and ‘80’s.
Not content to limit his talents on court, Gordon was the partner/pro at the infamous Bay Street Racquet Club and then he opened a 16 court facility in Toronto with his friend and junior partner in crime, Bill MacDonell in the ‘80s. The Squash Academy quickly became a mecca for budding young squash players as well as international players.
In 1987 Gordon relocated to Buffalo, New York to start his own court construction company. He recognized that the world of squash was changing from hardball to soft ball (singles) and he parlayed his experience and knowledge as a player and club owner into Anderson Courts, the leading court conversion and construction company in the United States.
He has been a member of the US Squash Doubles Committee and sits on the Board of Overseers of the National Urban Squash and Education Association. He is a past president of the US Jesters.
Gordon has been and continues to be an extraordinary ambassador for the game on both sides of the border.
Peter J. Hall – Builder – Inducted 2013
The Ontario Squash Hall of Fame Builder category is reserved for individuals who have been the game’s most significant leaders off the court over a long period of time. A ‘builder’ is someone who has advanced the game of squash from its beginnings in Ontario to the pinnacle it hopes to reach when it is admitted into the 2020 Olympic Games.
For five decades, Peter has led by example first on the court. He has an impressive array of championship titles to his name – seven U.S. Championships (one in hardball and six in doubles), most notably in 1977 with Victor Harding being the first Canadian Team to win the U.S. National Doubles, eight Canadian Championships including one soft ball, two hardball and five doubles, 15 Ontario titles, with doubles championships peppered with several singles titles. And in 1986, Peter and his partner Andy Pastor took home a gold medal in the World Masters Games as well as a silver medal in soft ball.
Peter is well known for his sportsmanship and sense of fair play. His long-time doubles partner Andy Pastor related the story of the two of them reaching the finals of a very important event. The match went to the 5th game and was tied 14-14. On the deciding point, Peter called a ball down on himself. He wanted very badly to win that match but it was more important to this man to live up to his own code of ethics and sense of fair play.
As a builder of the game, Peter early on recognized that the foundations of the house of squash must be strong and he put his efforts and dedication into building the game off the court, so much so, that he enters the Hall of Fame as a builder although given his on court record, he could easily be recognized as a player. In the 1970’s Peter was chair of the Court Construction Committee for the C.S.R.A, the predecessor to the current Squash Canada. He built and managed the Hamilton Squash Club in 1976 and for many, many years, the club was a focal point for squash in the Hamilton and Burlington area. He lent his knowledge and expertise to the Hillside Racquet Club in Ancaster where he chaired its Junior Committee for a number of years. He has chaired and organized some of the most successful squash events in the country including both the Canadian Hardball and Canadian Doubles Championships. In 1970 he was elected a Jester and remains a stalwart and committed supporter of university and junior squash.
Peter’s 50 year dedication to the game of squash has not only contributed to his well-deserved entry into the Ontario Squash Hall of Fame, but has been instrumental in the current stature of the game- healthy, thriving and with a very bright future.
Graham Ryding – Player – Inducted 2013
When the Ryding family moved from Manitoba to Ontario, an era of squash was born that to date is virtually without parallel in squash not just in Ontario but in Canada. Graham Ryding along with Jonathon Power catapulted Canadian squash onto the world stage and established this country and this province as credible and strong contenders at that level.
Graham worked his way up the competitive ladder beginning with numerous junior Ontario titles to be followed by 7 Canadian junior Championships, from Under 13 through Under 19. He quickly moved into the senior ranks and scored titles in the Canadian Soft Ball Championships in 1997, 1998 and again in 2004.
Graham represented Canada in 1998 at the World University Championships, bringing home a bronze medal. He was a member of Team Canada at the Men’s World Championships in 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003 and 2005 and team in 1997 gave Canada’s it’s best ever international team result – a silver medal.
He also represented Canada at the Pan American Games in 1999, winning a gold individual medal and as part of the team bringing home another gold medal and he won individual silver honours at the 2003 Pan Ams as well as a gold team medal.
In his professional squash career, Graham held a #10 PSA ranking and was Canadian # 2 for several years.
Every province, every country, no matter the sport, wants to send the very best athletes into competition but equally important, they want the athletes to be representative of the very best of the nation and of the game. Graham Ryding represented Ontario and Canada with great professionalism both on and off the court; he played the game with skill and with integrity and when he retired in 2007, he left a legacy of which all of the squash community can and should be proud.
Frank Baillie - Builder - Inducted 2011
In the late 1960s, the landscape of squash in Ontario was somewhat limited. Some clubs such as the Toronto Racquet and Hamilton Thistle had been around for many years but in the early ‘70s, squash would experience an unparalleled growth spurt – it would set the stage for the pre-eminence of Ontario as the hot spot for squash in Canada.
Every revolution needs a leader and the squash revolution in Ontario began with a man by the name of Frank Baillie. He began playing squash at an early age and competed on several Lapham Grant teams but his real love, his passion was not so much in playing the game but in growing it.
His introduction to the executive side of squash was as President of Quebec Squash Racquets Association (Squash Quebec) (1966-67). He became Treasurer of the Canadian Squash Racquets Association (1968-70) just before moving back to Ontario
Squash Ontario was only born in 1976 but its lineages were impressive. Before that time, there were three very active squash organizations in Ontario – the Men’s Soft Ball Association, the Ontario Women’s Squash Association and the Ontario Hardball Association. The chair of that organization was one Frank Baillie. Each of these associations approached the Ontario Government for funding and the bureaucrats of the time were very amenable with one condition – that all 3 associations must amalgamate into one organization – one voice for squash in the province. The Men’s Hardball Association had been around for a very long time – softball was only a glimmer on the squash horizon. It was a difficult decision for Frank, as president to make – to dissolve a long-standing and respected entity and dip his toes into unknown waters. But Frank did what he felt was in the best interests of the game and agreed, along with his 2 colleagues, Michael Johnston and Susan Swift, to create Squash Ontario.
Frank served as Treasurer of the new association for two years, a personal commitment he made to ensure that the fledgling association set down solid and firm roots in the Ontario squash community.
Frank had another dream – one which he worked hard to make a reality and that was to build a squash club which would be second to none. That dream became a reality in 1978 when The Club in Oakville opened its famous orange and black doors. From that grand opening, The Club grew in stature and reputation. Frank and his wife, Lib, put the interests of their members first and nothing, nothing was too good for The Club members.
In 1981, The Club played host to the Women’s World Teams Championship – the first time a women’s world event had ever been hosted in Canada let alone in Ontario. Teams from around the world travelled to Oakville and The Club and put Canada as a squash-playing country on the world map.
Frank was also responsible for initiating the wave of English squash players and coaches who came across the pond to Canada – the first being Tony Swift. Frank had the vision to recognize that in order for squash to flourish in Ontario, it needed firm coaching foundations and because Squash Canada (Canadian Squash Racquets Association) was in its early years, it needed an injection of expertise from the mother country.
In 1984, Frank along with Ian C. Stewart and Bill Richards, led the International Squash Rackets Federation (later known as the World Squash Federation) as Vice President. Frank and his colleagues steered the ship of state through some very controversial and rocky shoals but clearly left the association on a very firm financial foundation. The ISRF, under the Canadian influence, became a well respected international sport association.
Back at home, Frank continued to promote the game of squash through his sponsorship of singular and prestigious events – one in particular, the Judy Traviss North American Open. International players grew to know The Club as well as any squash facility in the world and Frank and Lib always made sure they were welcomed with open arms.
He was singularly important in growing the women’s game – he not only supported it through tournaments but also financially.
Frank sold The Club in the early ‘90s – retirement beckoned. He was a significant presence on the squash scene and as a builder, contributed immeasurably to those formative years of growth.
Gary Waite - Player - Inducted 2011
Gary hails from Sarnia Ontario. After having been exposed to squash by his parents Lewis and Janet at the age of 12, Gary came under the care of Jack Clift and his weekend junior squash program and became part of a burgeoning junior squash movement in the area inundating courts at Pinsonneault’s and the Sarnia Riding Club for years to come. Through the tireless efforts of Jack, Lew, Janet and so many other parents at the time Sarnia could lay claim to a National Champion in every age group.
Through the added generosity and guidance of Jack Fairs and the team at Western, Gary garnered more titles than any other junior squash player in the history of Canadian squash. He would continue this trend into the professional ranks to become one of the most decorated professional squash players in the history of the game worldwide. In 1993, while attending Harvard University, Gary could lay claim to being the #1 hardball singles player, #2 hardball doubles player and #12 softball singles player in the World...a feat in combined rankings not achieved by any player in the history of any of the three disciplines and not likely to be duplicated.
Gary put on hold his professional squash playing aspirations a year ago with the impending birth of his fifth child with his beautiful wife Nathalie. His current commitment to the game is the new National Squash Academy in which he is an active partner. Gary is the National Squash Academy’s Director of Sales and Membership, and works tirelessly to promote it within Toronto and Internationally. His primary responsibilities include Membership sales, operations and squash programming in the executive area and running major events, tournaments and exhibitions within the center. Gary is also looking forward to sharing his vast experience while working in a coaching capacity with the NSA’s top junior and young professionals.
Barney Lawrence - Builder - Inducted 2009
To be considered a “builder”, suggests that one’s contributions to the game of squash are many faceted. Barney’s contributions and passion for squash are second to none, and is evidenced having helped “build the game” as a player, club founder, coach, volunteer, financial supporter, and for many years as a guest speaker.
Barney founded the Kitchener-Waterloo Racquet Club in 1962. The initial idea came to him in 1956 after playing in the inaugural Buffalo Invitational. His love of that club and its crest were the beginnings of what would later become the Kitchener-Waterloo Racquet Club. Barney held the club’s singles title from 1962-1967 and was the doubles champion on 4 occasions. Barney was also President of the club from its inception until 1968 when he had the foresight to build the first doubles court in Ontario outside of Toronto at the KWRC. Today the KWRC is alive and well having undergone recent renovation and membership growth and is looking forward to celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2012.
Barney’s assistance in starting up squash clubs has not been limited to Kitchener. Membership at other clubs, donations to fundraising campaigns, speaking at an event, or playing an exhibition, Barney would graciously give whenever asked. Barney is a founding member at the Richmond Hill Racquet Club & London Squash Club. He is a Life Member at the Toronto Racquet Club, Kitchener-Waterloo Racquet Club, and the former Hamilton Squash Club. In addition he was a member of both the Cambridge Club and Toronto Cricket Skating and Curling Club for many years. Barney has also lent his playing services to the opening of the TCS&C club’s first hardball singles and doubles courts with partner Don Leggat and to the opening of the Stratford Racquet Club in 1979.
Squash at the University of Waterloo played a significant role in Barney’s life. Barney started teaching at the University in 1967 as an adjunct professor. His passion for squash eventually found its way to the University squash courts. In 1982, his fundraising efforts saw the university campus get its first two international singles courts, supplementing the 4 North American courts it also had.
Barney fostered his passion for life in his players using squash to build their character. Commitment, the importance of friendship, and “giving back” to things that you got so much from were exemplified in Barney as a coach. Today many of Barney’s players continue to be involved in squash, remain good friends, and are giving back to the game, symbolizing the influence that he had in their lives.
Barney coached at U of W until 1995 and today the program continues under the guidance of good friend and fellow Jester Clive Porter.
Notably, as a volunteer, Barney was twice President of the Ontario Squash Racquets Association and he chaired and hosted the 1984 Canadian Junior Squash Championships jointly at the Kitchener-Waterloo Racquet Club and University of Waterloo.
Whenever anyone called looking for financial support for a squash event Barney would always contribute. He always had “100 bucks” in his pocket for something related to squash. Many U of W players would attest to the regular patronage of the campus pub after practice and later to the Faculty Club for a meal they were not accustomed to as a student - all of course on Barney’s tab!
Finally, Barney’s contributions to squash have been previously recognized. In 1984, he was inducted into the Waterloo County Sports Hall of Fame and in January of 2001 he was inducted into the University of Waterloo Athletic Hall of Fame.
Donald Leggat - Player - Inducted 2009
Don Leggat’s record is second to none in the history of Ontario squash. When one thinks that he has won 23 National Championships, countless Ontario Championships as well numerous invitational events in both Canada and the United States, there is no question that his record is outstanding.
Don changed the game of doubles in Canada. We all know the shot called the “Philly”. Well, Don might not have invented it but he sure perfected it . Too, the game was not played high on the court but along came Don Leggat and started to hit the ball high and off many walls. It was not only a defensive shot but also very effective as opponents had no idea where to go. This type of play is common today but guess where most Canadians learned the game; from Don Leggat and the players from The Hamilton Thistle Club.
Don Leggat has been involved for some 50+ years in squash. Few people know of his generosity in sending juniors to play in national events or the fact that he has been a contributing Jester since 1958 or President of The Canadian Squash Racquets Association from 1970 to 1972.
On the court Don Leggat was a fierce competitor, played hard, fair and gave no quarter. Off the court, he has been generous to a fault and helped build our game in Ontario and Canada. Too, a great ambassador for Canadian squash wherever he played.
Tony Swift - Player - Inducted 2009
Few players successfully made the transition from hardball to soft ball and then to doubles. Tony Swift has won major championships internationally, nationally and provincially in all three disciplines of the game.
Tony’s playing credentials are impressive, holding three international soft ball titles, six national soft ball titles and four Ontario soft ball titles. But he wasn’t through yet. He also holds five Canadian hardball championship titles.
Having conquered soft ball and hardball, he moved on to doubles where he had an equally distinguished career chalking up three world titles, nine Canadian titles and 10 Ontario titles.
Tony was also responsible for steering the development of the coaching program at the national level and chair Squash Ontario’s Coaching Committee for a number of years. He was a gifted course conductor and was instrumental in mentoring many coaches over the years.
Tony coached the National Women’s Team in 1981 and the National Men’s Team in 1983, 1985 and 1987.
In his spare time, he devoted significant time and effort to the development of officiating world-wide. He was chair of the ISRF (World Squash Federation) Rules and Referees Committee for 10 years from 1981 – 1991; he is currently chair of the Doubles Rules Sub Committee responsible for Rule Changes to North American doubles rules and he has written extensively on both singles and doubles rules and their interpretation.
Ernest Howard - Player - Inducted 2007
Ernest Howard was the first Canadian squash player to gain any fame or international recognition outside of Canada when he first won the U.S. National Singles Championship in Buffalo in 1953. He preceded this by winning the Canadian Singles Championship two weeks earlier in Ottawa. At that time, this was an unprecedented feat.
Ernest won 7 Ontario Singles Championships from 1950 to 1957 and he represented Canada 9 times in Lapham Cup matches against the U.S.
Ernest was elected a Jester in 1950; was Vice President of Squash Canada from 1957 – 1962 and was President of the Badminton & Racquet Club in 1970.
Jonathon Power - Player - Inducted 2007
Jonathon is the only North American player to ever reach #1 in the world. He marched to the beat of his own drummer and with his quirky, go-for-broke, robust style he injected excitement into every match that made him the competitor that every tournament director dreamed to have in their event. Not slow to question referees’ calls, Jonathan was a player officials liked to watch but would prefer not to referee!
2006 was Jonathon Power’s 14th and final year on the PSA Tour ending with yet another World #1 ranking. Power won 37 career PSA championships, was ranked #1 for much of 1999 and four months in 2001 and had maintained a ranking in the top 10 since 2000.
In 1998 Power won the World Open, the PSA Masters event in 2001, 2002 and 2005 and was winner of the PSA Super Series in both 2002 and 2004.
He represented Canada at world championships as both a junior and senior player and won a number of U.S., Canadian and Ontario championships along the way.
Jonathon was inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, the only squash player to have achieved that distinction.
Gerald Shugar - Player - Inducted 2007
Gerry Shugars’ squash career has spanned 4 decades, beginning in 1966 to the present. During this period, he achieved North American notoriety in two different games. He won 10 Canadian Hardball Championships and 7 U.S. Hardball Championships.
As North America began to play the soft ball game, Gerry directed his attention to this new game and proceeded to win 11 Canadian Soft Ball Championships and 7 U.S. Soft Ball Championships. He also won the 1985 World Masters Soft Ball Championships.
The number of titles is mind-boggling but they are even more astonishing when seen through the prism of age – Gerry began his squash career after he turned 30 years old.
Anne Smith - Builder - Inducted 2007
Ontario first won Anne’s heart when she captained the Scottish team in the 1981 Women’s World Championships. Prior to that, Anne had come to Toronto as part of a Standard Life sponsored Scottish team tour during which she won the Judy Traviss North American Open.
Her prowess on the squash courts was matched only by her commitment to and passion for growing and promoting the game of squash. She ran for the Board of Directors of Squash Ontario in 1984 and soon became its President. After she completed her term, she successfully ran for the Squash Canada Board. She served as Vice President and then for 8 years as the President.
She was a respected and forceful voice for Canadian squash at the World and Pan American squash levels. Anne was WSF Regional Vice President for Pan America and represented the WSF at PASO meetings at which the bid for squash’s inclusion in the Pan American Games succeeded. She went on to provide the technical leadership for the first Pan American Games squash event. When she left Squash Canada, she was elected Vice President of the World Squash Federation. She was Chair of the WSF Medical and Rules and Referees Committees while serving as WSF Vice President. She was responsible for the WSF member nations approval of the Canadian developed antidoping policy and the use eyeguards for Junior World Championships. After leaving the WSF she was consulted to review the WSF Refereeing program.
Anne led the two most influential squash associations in Canada – Squash Ontario and Squash Canada and she is highly regarded and respected as a builder of the game. She was awarded the W. Stewart Brauns award by the USSRA for her substantial administrative contribution to the game of squash. Anne also boasts an incredible playing record of 30 National, Ontario and World titles in singles, hardball, women’s doubles and mixed doubles.
Heather Wallace - Player - Inducted 2007
Heather is the only Canadian, male or female, in any sport to have won 11 consecutive Canadian titles, 11 of which were closed championships and one, the Canadian Open.
She reached number 3 in the world in 1982, then in 1996 played her way back to number 6 internationally. She won Pan American Gold medals in singles and team in 1995 a mere 20 weeks after rupturing her Achilles tendon. She also added a bronze medal for a third place finish in the World Mixed Doubles in 1997with her partner, Jamie Crombie.
Heather represented Canada senior women for 12 years; she was coached both the Canadian Junior Women and Canadian Senior Women’s Teams.
Before immigrating to Canada, Heather represented Scotland.
Heather coaches at Goodlife Queensview in Ottawa and divides her times between her high performance athletes and juniors.
Swift - Builder - Inducted 2005
contributions to squash in Ontario and in Canada have been many and
varied and were made over an extensive period of time. She was instrumental
in bringing the three fractious factions of squash in Ontario (men’s
hardball, men’s soft ball and women) together to form Squash
Ontario in 1976. She had been involved as a volunteer since 1971 and
was President of the Ontario Ladies Squash Racquets Association during
these formative years. The OLSRA was the only group to have its act
together in those days, and under Sue’s leadership, had already
laid the groundwork for a number of significant initiatives which
enhanced not only women’s squash but squash in general.
had gone to England to confer with the Women’s Squash Rackets
Association there to help her develop programs for use in Ontario
for both coaching and officiating. These were ultimately adopted
by nearly all the squash associations in Canada. Sue was on the
first crucial Board of Directors of Squash Ontario that was responsible
for establishing the office, hiring an Executive Director and “calming
the still choppy waters of amalgamation”.
satisfied with the work done on the provincial level, Sue used her
considerable skills to full advantage on many committees at the
national level culminating in her election as President of the Canadian
Squash Racquets Association, the predecessor of Squash Canada, in
in 1981, Sue chaired the organizing committee of the Women’s
World Championships that were being held in North America for the
first time. The event was a tremendous success and established Canada
as a serious international host of major world events.
was also instrumental in creating and organizing the inaugural Ontario
Mixed Doubles Championships.
1986, Sue was awarded the prestigious Special Achievement Award
by the Province of Ontario for her outstanding contribution to her
sport (83 nominations province-wide were received that year and
only 3 chosen).
In short, very few squash volunteers have made the kind of contributions
in so many ways and for so many years as had Susan Swift.
Ian C. Stewart - Builder - Inducted
1975, there were 3 organizations who represented squash in Ontario
– the Ontario Men’s Hardball Association, the Ontario
Women’s Squash Racquets Association and the Ontario Men’s
Soft Ball Association. All three approached the Ministry of
Tourism and Recreation, asking for funding. The Ministry was very
comfortable funding squash; however, it’s one condition was
that there be one voice for squash in Ontario, one association.
To bring three such disparate groups together needed someone who
had good, sound business expertise, a love of and background in
the game of squash and the wisdom of Solomon.
Enter Ian C. Stewart. His credentials to take on the role of the founding chairman of Squash Ontario were impressive. Ian joined the Badminton & Racquet Club of Toronto in 1952 and was elected president of the club in 1976. He is now an Honorary Life Member.
Ian became a Jester in 1964 and was Chairman of the Canadian Jesters from 1978 to 1981, during which time the Jesters celebrated it’s 50th anniversary in 1980.
Ian was President of the Canadian Squash Racquets Association (now Squash Canada) from 1964 to 1967. During his Presidency, Ian chaired the very successful Centennial Squash Tournament to celebrate Canada’s 100th birthday.
Ian received the Government of Ontario’s Special Achievement award, being the first squash volunteer to be inducted into the province’s Volunteer Hall of Fame.
Ian then became Canada’s representative to the International Squash Rackets Federation and from 1981 through 1985 was the chairman of the world governing body. Ian hired the first full time Executive Director. Ian’s tenure with the world association was during a fascinating era, one where there were clear distinctions between amateur and professional squash. Ian is credited with persuading the professional game to adopt the point-a-rally scoring method and to lower the height of the tin. It needs to be said that these changes were not easily sold on the world stage, particularly as both had their grounding in the United States. Both of these changes were eventually made to the professional soft game on a world-wide basis, simultaneously making the game more understandable to the masses and reducing the length of the rallies that were both threatening the game’s marketability.
In every association Ian served, he led the only way he knows
how – by doing.
Sharif Khan - Player - Inducted 2005
of the legendary Hashim Khan, Sharif was awarded a squash scholarship
at Millfield School, Somerset, England at the age of 11. By 1962,
the young squash prodigy had won every public school title open to
For a decade and a half (late ‘70s to early ‘80s), Sharif Khan
dominated all with a squash racquet. He remained the reigning wizard
of squash in North American for almost two decades. He won every
major North American tournament during that period and holds the
twelve-time winning record for the North American Open Championship.
moved to Toronto in 1968, at the Skyline Racquet Club. He continued
playing from Toronto, his home base, retiring from competition in
continues to be actively involved in coaching and promoting squash
in Toronto. He is Director of the Sharif Khan Children’s Squash
Foundation, affiliated with the Big Brothers and Sisters of Peel.
In November 2000, Sharif was named the Honorary Chairman for the
YMG Classic in Toronto.
president of Pros and Khans Sports Marketing, Sharif has expanded
his business and squash projects to include hosting a tournament
package in Barbados as well as future plans for a professional tour
for squash in North America.
Sharif became an active partner in the flourishing squash program
at Barton’s Fitness in Collingwood.
Jim Mason - Builder - Inducted 2005
fitness, and friendship”. These words were the message that
Jim Mason brought to the squash community his entire life as he
spread the joy of the game of squash to Ontario, Canada and the
world during his lifetime.
watch Jim Mason spend a weekend in any squash club in Ontario during
a junior squash tournament was to receive a lesson in life skills.
Jim would appear in his trademark Fedora hat, blue blazer, slacks,
and compassionate smile and he made his way to the squash courts.
Exchanging greetings with children, parents, and coaches every step
of the way, seeming to know each person’s name and something
special about their life. As Jim would begin watching a match, he
inevitably would engage a child in conversation and you would see
his eyes making direct contact with the youngster as they shook
hands. Inevitably, a squash ball would come out of Jim’s pocket
and he would be showing another youngster the importance of the
would be laughter and penetrating eye contact as Jim would literally
will his messages from his brain to the young people. When the tournament
ended on Sunday and many felt their work was done, Jim Mason’s
labours of love had just begun. He would return to Meaford and compose
letters to countless numbers of young players, parents, and coaches
encouraging them on their endeavours and giving them reason to press
forward with their squash and their lives.
Jim was the recipient of all of Ontario’s major awards, it
speaks to the character of Jim Mason that he was not defined by
a singular recognition. His essence was for human caring, one person
at a time. Jim Mason made a difference during his lifetime and will
continue to make a difference through the people hetouched and there
were hundreds, and hundreds.
Jack Fairs - Builder - Inducted 2005
Fairs has worked at the University of Western Ontario for over half
a century as a teacher, mentor, researcher and coach. He is well
known and respected for his extensive contributions in physical
education and coaching, particularly in the sport of squash. He
retired in 1988 but still continues to coach squash at his alma
mater where he is professor emeritus of kinesiology.
to coaching has been a hallmark of Jack’s distinguished career.
Incredible as it may seem, he played and coached five sports during
his lifetime: football, basketball, baseball, tennis, and squash.
Even more he produced national champions in tennis, football and
squash community knows Jack best for the record-setting play of
the UWO squash team. Since 1970 his teams have won 32 team titles
and 22 singles titles in Ontario University Athletics. Their record
of 22 consecutive team and 32 titles overall make them the most
successful team in UWO history.
his tenure UWO has ranked in the upper echelon of US intercollegiate
squash. It won team titles in 1977 and 1980 and singles titles in
1976 and 1989. Team members have earned All-American honours and
have been named to numerous All-Tournament teams.
Fairs’ honours and awards document his commitment to excellence
in coaching and promoting the game of squash. He has been recognized
by his peers, his province, his country and by the United States.
In 1997 he was the first recipient of the NISRA (National Intercollegiate
Squash Racquets Association) lifetime achievement award.
a teacher and coach, Jack Fairs has few equals. His work has enriched
the lives of countless student/athletes. Plato said, “those
having torches will pass them onto others”, and Jack has done
that with enthusiasm and dedication. He has been a role model, par
excellence, for aspiring teachers and coaches and continues his
commitment to advancing the game of squash.