Hall of Fame Inductee
Kenneth Malcolm Pearson
In the period before and immediately after the formation of the Queensland Amateur Basketball Association, Kenneth Pearson was recognised as one of the game’s most prominent players and coaches. In his later years, Ken’s contributions to the game enabled and facilitated the development and strength of the game in the Wide Bay and Burnett areas.
Ken was introduced to basketball by Ivor Burge and as one of the tallest medical students, he took to the game immediately. So much so that he also commenced playing basketball at the Y. M. C. A. facilities in Edward Street Brisbane during the Second World War.
Ken was a prominent player, vice caption, and stand in coach of the inaugural Queensland representative team, captaining the inaugural University of Queensland basketball team at the inter varsity Australian championships held in Sydney. In 1946 the first Blues and Half Blues for Sporting Excellence for basketball were awarded by the University of Queensland and Kenneth Pearson was awarded a Half Blue for basketball. In 1947 Ken was awarded a Full Blue for basketball.
In the late 1950s Ken had settled in Maryborough and was a part of the highly successful Dodgers basketball team, made up mostly of medical professionals. Maryborough’s affiliation with Queensland Amateur Basketball Association caused Maryborough to become part of Central Queensland Zone, a placement that created enormous logistical problems. Ken became the leading lobbyist for the successful creation of Wide Bay Basketball Zone, he was the zone’s inaugural president and worked tirelessly towards making it a huge success.
His refereeing and coaching knowledge was invaluable to the Wide Bay Zone and Ken extended his help to the many smaller basketball associations scattered across the Burnett and Wide Bay area.
The enormous growth of basketball in Maryborough created the need for bigger and better facilities, and under the leadership of Ken Pearson, the Maryborough basketball stadium was conceived and created. The appropriately named K.M. Pearson Basketball Stadium was opened on 22 March 1975.
Doctor Kenneth Malcolm Pearson died aged 93 years, on 30 January 2019. It is indeed appropriate that this giant of the foundation years of basketball in Queensland is inducted posthumously as a member of the Queensland Basketball Hall of Fame in the Class of 2021.