Once a dream – it became a reality. The National Basketball League was just a vision for John Raschke, and he was widely known in the community as “the father of the NBL”. He was the inaugural Commissioner and Chairman of our professional league.
John could play the game of basketball himself; he represented Sydney University and NSW.
Not all great players make conscientious coaches, but John was an exception. He coached Newcastle Men’s team to 9 NSW titles and his intelligent methods helped NSW to the Australian title in 1967.
He was well renowned for his mentoring capabilities and that led him to the coach’s role for Australia at the 1970 World Men’s Championships.
John continued to serve basketball in this country and in 1974 he found himself as the Chairman of Basketball NSW. He continued in the role until 1990.
Simultaneously, his leadership and energy benefited him in his role as president of the Australian Basketball Federation (ABF) 1972-1982.
John’s work wasn’t just apparent in the Basketball community. He was also getting noticed by the wider sports community. In 1981, he received the Australian Sports Administrator of the Year award.
John will forever be one of our basketball legends. He is now a life member of the Newcastle Basketball Association, Basketball NSW, the National Basketball League and Basketball Australia.
He was awarded the OAM for services to basketball.