1988 – Meritorious Service
Eddie Elias gathered with 33 bowlers for a meeting in Syracuse in 1958 during the ABC Convention. He convinced them to put up $50 each and that was the birth of the Professional bowlers Association.
Although his knowledge of bowling was minimal, Elias was amazed to find that there was no such thing as a pro bowlers tour. After a meeting with Dick Wber and Don Carter, Elias moved ahead with plans for the PBA.
The PBA tour started on 1959 with a total fund of less than $50,000. By the 1980’s, the national and regional prize money was in excess of $5,000,000.00.
An attorney in Akron, Elias is an aggressive idea man. He had television experience as host of ”Akron Tonight” prior to his PBA days. That link with TV helped him forge a link with ABC TV to telecast the Winter PBA tour and gain national exposure for bowling and pro bowlers.
The 59-year-old Elias was inducted into the ABC Hall of Fame in 1985.