Helen Ollivier is the epitome of what Life Membership is all about, having dedicated most of her adult life to the game of basketball and the Coaching of kids at North Adelaide.

She originally came from a netball background, but like many of us, fell in love with the game of basketball, when her father got her involved in the mid 60’s at Forestville and Bowden stadiums. This was of course before Hillcrest was even built and all Clubs played out of the same arenas.

She quickly adapted to the indoor game and with some encouragement from Club founder Merv Harris, got involved in organising a Saturday afternoon competition (at the new Hillcrest stadium) in the early 70’s. Merv recognised talent when he saw it and quickly moved her on to Coaching the Under 12 Division 1 Girls team with support from the great man.

Success came early in the form of 5 State Championships and 5 Winter District Premierships, with the vast majority of the players coming from the Saturday competition Helen had help manage. Interstate success was also a regular occurrence as the team ventured to Victoria on many occasions.

Helen’s husband (John) then had the opportunity to work within BSA which involved working at other stadiums and Helen lost the direct connection at North, but in 1999 he was assigned back to Hillcrest and Helen had the opportunity to get back into Coaching at the Rockets. She has spent the last 20 years organising mini-ball, school competitions, basketball skills clinics and the like, even (on many occasions), dropping leaflets in letterboxes to get kids to come out.

Helen and her husband John continue to be involved and can often be found at Hillcrest Coaching, encouraging, supporting and helping young basketballers as they commence their journey in this great game.

Thank you Helen and congratulations on your Life Membership award, well and truly deserved. 


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