Luther H. Gulick

In the winter of 1891, Luther Gulick, the head of the physical education department at the International YMCA Training School in Springfield, Massachusetts, persuaded a young instructor named James Naismith to create an indoor game that could be played during the winter between football and baseball seasons. A major force in the early development of basketball, Gulick oversaw Naismith’s creation of the game, led basketball’s move to the national and international level, and in 1895 became the chairman of the Basketball Rules Organization. Among his other achievements, Gulick developed the YMCA triangle symbol (signifying the YMCA’s physical, emotional, and intellectual pursuits that still remain today), served on the Olympic Committee for the London Games in 1908, and is credited with forming such notable youth organizations as the Public School Athletic Leagues in New York, the Boy Scouts of America, and the Camp Fire Girls. He served as Head of Physical Education at School for Christian Workers from 1887 to 1900 and Chairman of the AAU Basketball Committee from 1895 to 1905.