In the early 1940s, when John Arthur ‘Wink’ Willox began to officiate basketball games, there were no rulebooks readily available. He personally bought two hundred rulebooks from the US, distributed them throughout BC, and during the next eight years spent his annual holidays conducting clinics throughout the province. In 1982, in recognition of his dedication Wink received the “Ted Early Award”, Canada’s most prestigious award for basketball officials.

Willox refereed basketball for twenty years. He taught rules for thirty years and created the first BC Rules examination for aspiring officials.

Willox was the co-founder of the Vancouver & District Basketball Referees Association from 1942-48. He was the founder and executive member of the BC Basketball Officials Association.

Willox served as a member of the International Association of Approved Basketball Officials’s (IAABO) exam committee and chairman of the IAABO membership committee. He was a charter member of the Canadian Association of Basketball Officials (CABO) exams committee and served as an evaluator/assessor.

Willox was also one of the founding directors of the BC Sports Federation, known later as Sport BC.

He wrote and published the “Whistle Blast” and later the “Full Court Press,” a newsletter for basketball officials and coaches.

The “Wink Willox Award” was created in his honour, awarded to individuals who made noteworthy contributions over an extended period to the advancement of basketball officiating at provincial and national levels.