Mary Kenniston, was officially inducted into the WPBA Hall of Fame. — Mary recently posted the following message on FB to all her fans in the sport….
“I was both honored and proud to be inducted into the Women’s Professional Billiards Association Hall of Fame this past Saturday night. I’d like to thank the WPBA for my nomination and induction into our Hall of Fame.I’d like to thank my old friend & presenter, LoreeJon Ogonowski-Brown, for working so hard to make it a memorable evening for me. I’d also like to thank Kim Newsome for helping LJ iron out the many details. And again, I’d also like to thank all my Las Vegas friends who came to celebrate my special night with me. It meant so much to me that each and every one of you carved out time in your busy lives to come. I loved seeing all of you again!I started my pool journey over 45 years ago and was involved with the WPBA almost since its inception and until my retirement from the WPBA Tour in 1999. Having almost always been involved in the politics of our game, in 1992, I was once again back on the WPBA Board and involved in the creation of the WPBA Classic Tour which debuted in 1993. When we broke the news to the men’s association, we were derisively told, “You girls won’t draw flies.” Girls.The ‘90s were a heady time for us – we were constantly on ESPN. We became a force to be reckoned with in the billiard world.Little did I know that venturing into Guys & Dolls Billiards in Belleville, NJ that one evening in 1974 would change the course of my entire life and allow me to travel, meet so many people, make so many lifelong friends and ultimately be inducted into the WPBA Hall of Fame. I wouldn’t change a minute of it!I grew up in the ’60s when women were challenging the unfair limitations that had been imposed upon us and rode the rapidly changing landscape of the times. What started with only a few of us has grown over the years to tens of thousands of women not only here in the United States but all over the world. It gives me great pleasure to see young girls playing our beautiful game. I’ve always believed that there was no reason why women couldn’t play as well as the top male players. Unlike most other sports, physical strength is not a factor. I didn’t think I would see it in my lifetime but now I’m not so sure. The level of play can only continue to improve and I believe it will improve more rapidly than it did when I came up with so much information on the internet, instruction and coaching readily available.Therefore, it is no surprise to me and a testament to the longevity of the Women’s Professional Billiards Association that Predator has joined forces with the oldest billiards players organization in the world. Congratulations to my friend, Kelly Fisher, in becoming the first champion of the Predator Billiards Series – the $30,000 added Alfa Las Vegas Women’s Open!!!I remember when there was a time when women were not welcomed or even allowed to play in most pool rooms – unless accompanied by a date. Look at us now! Like the old Virginia Slims slogan, “We’ve come a long way, baby!” We made something new and worthwhile – something that gave women opportunities they never had before. I stand on the shoulders of the few women that came before me and walked arm-in-arm with those that made the journey with me and am honored to stand with those that came after me. I’m honored to stand among the greatest players of the women’s game. My fervent hope is that those who come after me will continue the traditions of those that came before them.”