The Naismith Basketball Foundation was first incorporated in 1989 with the following mission:
To increase awareness of Canadian Dr. James Naismith, inventor of the game of basketball – his values and legacies in sport, theology and medicine.
A full-sized bronze sculpture of Dr. Naismith was created by sculptor Elden Teft from Lawrence, Kansas in 2011.
The formal installation took place on July 23, 2011 in Almonte, Ontario (now part of Mississippi Mills), the town where Naismith attended high school. The sculpture can be found in Centennial Square in the town’s historic centre and shopping district, where Mill Street and Little Bridge Street meet.
The life-like sculpture can frequently be found adorned by scarves in winter and hats in the warmer months, as visitors and locals enjoy interacting with this bronze version of Dr. Naismith.
- The Foundation incorporated — 1989.
- The Right Hon. Roland Michener, PC. QC. Former Governor General of Canada, becomes Patron.
- “Coach” Jack Donohue, former Canadian National Team Coach accepts Honourary Presidency.
- FIBA, COPABA and Basketball Canada provide assistance with substantial seed funding.
- Governments of Canada and Province of Ontario grant over $60,000 for a professional study to finalize concept and strategy.
- Dr. James Naismith designated by the Government of Canada as a person of National Historic Significance.
- Government of Canada issues Naismith Centenary Stamp in 1991.
- Agreement with YM/YWCA to develop a Naismith Leadership Centre.
- Baton Broadcasting with Leaps & Bounds Productions produce docudrama “The Father of Basketball” in 1995.
- Frank Cosentino authors “Almonte’s Brothers of the Wind” celebrating the life and times of James Naismith and R. Tait McKenzie.
- Royal Canadian Mint launches commemorative 50 cent sterling silver coin in 1999 to celebrate basketball’s Canadian roots.
- Installation of Dr. James Naismith Bronzed Sculpture in Almonte, Ontario (now Mississippi Mills); July 23, 2011.