Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Robert (Bob) Lanius


BORN:  March 28, 1952 in Dallas, Texas

Woodrow Wilson High School
Dallas, TX

BA, Math and Computer Science
University of Texas
Austin, TX

Bob Lanius is the creator/developer of software, which enabled the growth of tournaments worldwide with online registration and administration.  Beginning in 2006, the system was used primarily at the Happy Trails Classic tournament in Surprise, AZ and the Arizona Senior Olympics.  For the next few years, the program was used by tournament directors to manage registrations, charts, and results. 

After the 2008 games, Bob implemented live tournament operations.  In February 2009, during the Arizona Senior Olympics, the system was used for the first time live at a tournament to enter results and generate score sheets.  Also in 2009, other tournaments started using the system including the Huntsman World Senior Games, USAPA Nationals, West Valley Senior Games in Arizona, Sun City Grand Skill Tournament (AZ), Sun River Spring Tournament (UT), San Diego Senior Olympics and California Senior Olympics.  In 2010, the Volunteer Management feature was added. In 2011 the system was re-branded as  In 2012 the Court Management feature was implemented, allowing matches to be assigned to specific courts. During these developmental years, Bob volunteered his time and allowed tournament directors to use his program without charge.  He often paid for equipment used to run the tournaments and for his own travel expenses to help train users and to help run tournaments.  In 2014 with about 100 tournaments a year, the system ownership and rights were transferred to PaddleUp to be operated as a true business and to continue its growth. By 2018, the system was handling over 600 tournaments per year.  

Melissa McCurley with Bob after she became the new head of

In 2003, Bob started the club website for AZ Happy Trails Resort that supported pickleball across the country with places to play, tournament listings, tournament results and news until 2015.

In 2005, Bob got involved with Earl Hill and the Arizona Senior Olympics managing a second venue, teaching referees, handling registrations, and eventually succeeding as commissioner.  In 2010, the Arizona clubs voted to move pickleball to the Grand Canyon State Games with Bob as commissioner.

Commissioner of the year by Grand Canyon State Games
Recognition award by the Phoenix Regional Sports Commission
2013-present – Tournament of Champions ‘Lanius Cup’ awarded annually
2018 Pickleball Impact Award by US Open Pickleball Championships, Florida

Bob receiving the Tournament of Champions award

Bob’s early athletic interests centered around swimming.  He lettered in swimming during high school then competed in United States Master Swimming from 1983 to 1995 and internationally in 1988.  

At the beginning of Bob’s career, he was a computer programmer for Wadley Institutes of Molecular Medicine, a system analyst for Sperry Corporation, and Assistant Director of Computer Services at Wadley Institute, all in Dallas, Texas.  Later, he moved on to be a Developer for Spectrum Scientific in Dallas, Texas.  He then worked for Microsoft Consulting Services as a Senior Consultant, supporting Microsoft clients in the southern region: Virginia thru Texas, and Mexico.  This was followed by working as Program Manager at Microsoft Consulting Services in Redmond, Washington to support foreign offices and customers across the globe.  From 1996 to 1999, Bob was self-employed as a consultant for Fortune 100 companies in the United States and worldwide.  He did software and web development onsite.

A year after his marriage to Jettye in 1998, Bob retired and the two became full-time RVers.  In 2000, they were introduced to pickleball by Keith Bisel at an RV campground in Chesapeake Bay, Virginia, marking the beginning of their transformative involvement in the sport.
Bob and wife Jettye playing pickleball in La Conner, Washington

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