Barney McCallum

A proud member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, McCallum graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Physical Education. His academic pursuits were paralleled by his deep involvement in various sports.

McCallum’s most enduring contribution to the world of sports was the creation of the game of pickleball. In 1965, together with his friends Bill Bell and Joel Pritchard, McCallum co-invented pickleball, a game that would soon captivate millions around the globe. The game was born out of a desire to create a fun activity for their families, using whatever equipment they had available – ping pong paddles, a perforated plastic ball, and a badminton court.

Pickleball quickly gained popularity for its blend of accessibility, competitiveness, and sheer enjoyment. McCallum’s ingenuity and dedication to promoting the sport played a pivotal role in its rapid expansion. His tireless efforts to introduce pickleball to communities across the United States and beyond helped establish it as one of the fastest-growing sports in the world.

Beyond his contributions to pickleball, McCallum remained actively involved in promoting physical fitness and healthy lifestyles throughout his life. His commitment to fostering sportsmanship and community spirit left an indelible mark on all who had the privilege of knowing him.

Barney McCallum’s legacy as the co-founder of pickleball and his unwavering dedication to promoting the joy of sports continue to inspire athletes and enthusiasts worldwide. His pioneering spirit and passion for innovation serve as a testament to the transformative power of recreation and the enduring bonds forged through friendly competition.