Year Inducted: 1993
Tun Henry H.S. Lee was born in Hong Kong, and furthered his education in the University of Cambridge, England. There, he picked up a devout interest in tennis. His excellent skill on the court led him to be elected the captain of the team from St. John’s College. It was there that he formed a friendship with King George VI who was his doubles partner in many competitions at that time.
In 1924, Tun H. S. Lee migrated to Malaya, being heavily involved in the tin mining industry. However, his love for sport did not wane. He was elected the Chairman of the Federation of Malaya Olympic Committee (FMOC), while serving as the Finance Minister of Malaysia. He served in the former position until 1959, when he handed the torch over to Tun Abdul Razak.
Tun Lee was also a horse-riding aficionado. It was during one of his horse-riding escapades that he suffered a serious fall, resulting in severe injury to one of his kidneys. This forced him to discontinue his involvement in strenuous physical sports, and resulted in him picking up a new game – golf. He was soon made the President of the Senior Golfers’ Society of Malaya in 1957, and was one of the founders of the Malaysian Golf Association. He was also the association’s first President, and was later made its Patron. During his involvement in the sport, he initiated the Golf Open Championships which are carried on to this day. The growth of golf in Malaysia owes its success in large part to Tun Lee’s dedication and passion for the sport.
An astute and diligent figure, Tun Henry H.S. Lee was also a humanitarian. Apart from sport and politics, he was also involved in various charities. Many believe that without his tireless enthusiasm and support, Malaysia would never have achieved the sporting successes that it did during its early years as a newly independent nation.