directors_barry-hearn2Matchroom Sport Chairman Barry Hearn is to be awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of East London.

Hearn, 66, is being honoured in recognition of his services to sport over the last four decades. He was nominated for the degree by UEL’s School of Health, Sport and Bioscience.

He has been behind some of the most iconic moments in British sporting history, promoting events in sports including snooker, darts, boxing and pool. He has been Chairman of World Snooker since 2009.

Hearn grew up on a council estate in Dagenham, east London. He did not attend university but trained to be an accountant before entering the world of sports promotion. In 1974, he became the chairman of Lucania Snooker Clubs.

His business boomed when the BBC began to broadcast snooker in colour, and he managed top stars like Steve Davis and Dennis Taylor through the sport’s boom in the 1980s.

In 1982 he founded Matchroom Sport, a sports promotion company, and expanded into boxing. The many well-known fighters he has promoted include Frank Bruno, Nigel Benn, Naseem Hamed and Chris Eubank.

Hearn will receive his Honorary Doctorate of Business at 2.30pm, on Tuesday, 18 November, at The 02 Arena.