The October issue of Squash Magazine has named Walter Burke one of the country’s more important and influential squash luminaries. Burke, who lives in Santa Fe, is president of the New Mexico Squash Racquets Association.
The magazine’s third-annual “Top Fifty” list named a person for each state, and Walter was the editors’ pick for New Mexico.
Wrote the editors: “Despite the heavy historical weight of a few cities and regions, squash has, for well more than a half century, been a national game. After the last state without a court — Arkansas — put one in Bentonville in 2001, you could play in every state in the Union.
“In some places today, squash is still a niche sport: under-reported, existing on the liminal edges of fitness clubs, on a couple of converted racquetball courts. You know, vegetable jokes.
"But the grassroots leaders in those states are indistinguishable to their more celebrated brethren on the coasts. They have an implacable passion for the game and the community around it.”
And here’s what they said about Walter: “Burke grew up playing squash — his father had been on the team at Wesleyan — and played at Bowdoin. After moving to Santa Fe in the 1980s, he first organized tournaments and junior clinics at El Gancho Fitness and more recently a men’s pro singles event at the Kiva Club, as well as the famous Kiva Classic amateur doubles tournament. Sixty-four, Burke has been the president of the New Mexico SRA since 1997.”
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Nov. 30 to Dec. 3, 2017