- Inducted in 2000
Wilson was born in Toronto in 1933. Upon graduation from Scarborough Collegiate, he attended Teacher’s College, which was followed by a teaching stint at Meadowvale Public School in Scarborough, where he eventually became principal. It was throughout this time that Wilson developed his passion for golf.
Wilson became a golf course professional in 1955, taking a part-time job at Pickering Golf Club. He ultimately left the teaching profession to become a full time professional at Pickering, where he organized numerous golf clinics.
In 1959, Wilson purchased 150 acres of farmland at Ashburn and designed and built an 18-hole golf course, known at that time as Whitby Golf Club. In 1968, it was renamed as Thunderbird Golf Club, and in 1990 was renamed once more as the Royal Ashburn Golf Club to commemorate a 1989 visit from His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, the Duke of York.
Wilson’s golf career included wins in the Pro-Am tournament at the Glen Lawrence Golf Club in Kingston, where he carded a round of 67, and at the Miller Trophy Match Play Championships at Pine Valley where he defeated the defending champion. He played in the Canadian Open in the 1960’s and in several PGA events in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Wilson was also instrumental in organizing PGA qualifying schools, donating his course for these events for many years.
Many top professionals on the Canadian golf circuit once attended qualifying school at Thunderbird or Royal Ashburn over the years as did a number professionals from the PGA ranks.
In 1995, Wilson began organizing junior golf programs in partnership with the various high schools in Whitby, utilizing his own facilities and many other area golf courses.