Buddy Hield, shooting guard for the Sacramento Kings, is dedicating himself to a critical endeavor this offseason: relief efforts for Hurricane Dorian. A native of the Bahamas where Dorian hit the hardest, Hield has a deeply personal stake in providing aid…Read More
Kawhi Leonard made countless headlines this summer, both for helping the Toronto Raptors win their first NBA Championship and for his subsequent trade to the Los Angeles Clippers. However, another recent story deserves just as much attention…Read More
NBA superstar Stephen Curry is making one of his favorite sports outside basketball more accessible to students of color. On August 19, Curry pledged a seven-figure donation to relaunch Howard University’s dormant golf program for both men and women, providing the opportunity for black golfers to play the sport competitively at the Division I level...Read More
On August 10, Marcus and Markieff Morris and their Family Over Everything Foundation hosted their 5th Annual Backpack Giveaway at Hunting Park Recreation Center in North Philadelphia, a place where the brothers spent much of their time as youth…Read More
Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown is much more than an athlete. He is a social change advocate striving to reform education in America. This past June, MIT Media Lab selected the 22-year-old former California Golden Bears standout to be one of its 2019 Director's Fellows, along with other innovators who will bring their unique insights, perspectives and ideas to address society’s biggest challenges…Read More
Now that we are well past the NBA Finals, having crowned the Toronto Raptors champions, welcomed a new NBA rookie crop through the NBA Draft, and come out the other end of one of the most intense off-seasons in the history of the NBA, it seems a good time to ask: What was the biggest moment of this past NBA season and off-season? …Read More
On June 22, NBA veteran DeMarre Carroll and the Carroll Family Foundation (CFF) held their second annual All-Girls Basketball Clinic at Basketball City in Manhattan for girls ranging in age from 7-18. During the clinic, Carroll — previously a forward with the Brooklyn Nets until signing this week with the San Antonio Spurs — led the girls in defensive drills and motivated them to continue working hard toward their goals…Read More
The 2019 Most Valuable Philanthropist (MVP) Basketball Awards provided guests with a night to remember. Held at the stunning Glasshouse Chelsea in New York City on the eve of the 2019 NBA Draft, the event kicked off with a special VIP reception where guests enjoyed hors d’oeuvre and cocktails while mingling in an intimate setting with honored guests, including:
Derek Anderson - 2019 Most Valuable Philanthropist
Bam Adebayo - 2019 Rising Star
Dave Sanderson - 2019 Courage Award
Sarah Kustok - NBA Analyst and Host of the 2019 MVP Basketball Awards
Additionally, VIP guests got an early viewing of the event's silent auction items, which ranged from an autographed poster of Mike Tyson from the infamous “Punch-Out!!” NES video game to trips to resorts in Bali and Costa Rica.
Following the VIP reception and arrival of the remaining guests, Alycia Powell and Michelle Mays, co-founders of Champions for Philanthropy (CFP), took the stage to begin the awards ceremony. First up, they honored 2019 Courage Award winner Dave Sanderson, who was the last person to disembark the infamous “Miracle on the Hudson” plane in 2009. Sanderson captivated guests as he described his reasons for waiting to leave the plane after the crash, stating, “the right thing for me is always to take care of other people first.”
Next, 2019 Rising Star Bam Adebayo and 2019 Most Valuable Philanthropist Derek Anderson joined NBA analyst Sarah Kustok for a conversation about their motivations and insights around philanthropy. Anderson emotionally described how his parents' abandoning him as a child led him down the path of giving back. He specifically noted that “common courtesy, people skills, and life training” helped him survive his youth, and he urged that these three principles return to our school systems.
Adebayo, who is 23 years younger than Anderson, showcased his colorful personality and kept the crowd entertained, humorously admitting his lack of life experience in comparison to Anderson. However, Adebayo turned solemn when describing his difficult upbringing by his single mother and his desire to impact the lives of children who face similar circumstances, stating, “I do the work I do for the kids, and it brings joy into my heart.”
Following the MVP Basketball Awards, Champions for Philanthropy participated in the Elevated Draft Reception, which featured conversations about wealth, philanthropy and social impact planning. Panelists from Alliance Bernstein and CFP, along with basketball legend Tom Hoover and Chicago Bulls player Wendell Carter Jr., spoke to draft prospects and their families about building a legacy through philanthropy. Mr. and Mrs. Carter also delivered a lively keynote about their experience as NBA parents.
Learn more about the 2019 MVP Basketball Awards.
This post was originally published by The Good Men Project.
May 22, 2019 by Michael Kasdan
After a hard-fought seven-game series that they lost at the buzzer, Philadelphia 76ers superstar center, Joel Embiid, turned and started to cry. The first man who he encountered was not a teammate, but Marc Gasol of the opposing Toronto Raptors (the very man he battled all night; the man many said was acquired just for this purpose – to shut down Embiid):
What did he say?
He told him, pretty simply: “I care about you.” I get it. As a fellow big man, I know where you’re coming from.
For his part, the usually voluble and often equal parts antagonistic and playful Embiid, appreciated the gesture. He said of Gasol: “I have a lot of respect for him. He’s a great guy.”
So, there you have it. Respect, love, empathy and some tears in Toronto.
NBA superstar LeBron James recently announced a partnership with Walmart on their "Fight Hunger. Spark Change." campaign to raise awareness and funds for those facing hunger in communities across the U.S. Through the partnership, the LeBron James Family Foundation and Walmart are helping to provide food and other essentials to families in need…Read More
Milwaukee Bucks point guard Malcolm Brogdon may be focused on the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, but that doesn’t mean he’s putting everything else on the sidelines. In fact, he’s making the most of the heightened media exposure of the NBA Playoffs to bring awareness to a cause close to his heart — his Hoops₂0 initiative…Read More
NBA superstar Kevin Durant is best known for leading the Golden State Warriors dynasty, and previously for his domination with the Oklahoma City Thunder. However, his philanthropy off the court will arguably leave the most lasting impact. A prime example is the Durant Center, an educational facility he recently helped open in his hometown of Prince George’s County, Maryland…
When the Brooklyn Nets faced the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis on April 7, Nets point guard Spencer Dinwiddie was wearing an extra special pair of sneakers. Designed by Dinwiddie himself through his K8iros sneaker brand recently launched in partnership with Project Dream, Dinwiddie’s Nipsey Hussle tribute sneakers paid respects to the Los Angeles-based rapper and community activist gunned down on March 31.Read More
Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris is already paying it forward in the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection just weeks after his February trade from the Los Angeles Clippers. On March 21, Harris held a Women’s History Month empowerment event for 40 middle school girls at the Shepard Recreation Center in West Philadelphia.
Partnering on his “Game Changers: Women in Sports, Tech & Literacy” event with Team Up Philly, an organization that provides sports and enrichment programs for local girls, Harris led a panel of women accomplished in various roles and industries in discussions related to academic success, mentorship, and resiliency.
“I’m excited because I’m up here with some phenomenal women that are here to just talk to you guys to inspire you to continue to grow in whatever career you guys want to grow in,” stated Harris as he introduced the panelists to the girls. “You guys [attendees] are the leaders. Really understand that confidence you have and bring it about and not be afraid of it.”
Featured panelists were:
Maya Francis, West Philadelphia native and writer, editor and contributor for various national media outlets
Kiera Smalls, West Philadelphia native and executive director at Philly Startup Leaders, an organization that supports emerging entrepreneurs
Serena Winters, 76ers reporter for NBC Sports Philadelphia
Ivana Seric, data scientist for the Philadelphia 76ers
In addition to the insight and inspiration the girls received at the event, attendees left with tangible takeaways too. Harris generously gifted each girl with the book “Game Changers: The Unsung Heroines of Sports History” by Molly Schiot. He also provided the girls with special drawstring backpacks.
Philadelphia may be new to Harris, but philanthropy is not. Among other charitable endeavors, Harris hosts his School of Business Basketball Camp ever summer for about 100 underserved youth in his hometown of Long Island, New York. Free of charge and held at the state-of-the-art Yes We Can Community Center, the camp aims to prepare youth for futures beyond basketball.
Now in his eighth NBA season, the former Tennessee Volunteer and first round pick in the 2011 NBA Draft is continuing to do his part to educate and empower underserved youth to see past what the world so often tells them is impossible.
Stay up to date with Tobias!
Frederick K.C. Price III Christian Schools in South Los Angeles honored alumnus and Brooklyn Nets guard Allen Crabbe during a ceremony on March 20 for his six-figure donation last summer to save the school from financial demise. Fittingly, Price paid tribute to Crabbe by naming their basketball court in his honor…Read More
On March 2, Los Angeles Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar partnered with Goldin Auctions to sell memorabilia and other items from his NBA Hall of Fame career, including his championship rings and MVP and All-Star trophies. Raking in nearly $3 million from the auction, Abdul-Jabbar is donating most of the proceeds to his Skyhook Foundation, a charity he established in 2009 to provide children in economically challenged communities with educational opportunities based in science, technology, engineering and mathematics…Read More
Last night, LeBron James became the fourth highest scoring NBA player of all-time, passing none other than Michael Jordan. Tonight, we honor him by highlighting four of the innumerable ways he is leaving an extraordinary legacy off the court too.
Last month during NBA All-Star Weekend, James and the LeBron James Family Foundation brought 23 students from the foundation’s 330 Ambassador program to Charlotte for its annual weekend of community service and career development. In addition to enjoying All-Star Weekend festivities and visiting with James, the students received career advice from the Carolina Panthers and spent time volunteering at Samaritan’s Feet, an organization that donates shoes to those in need.
This past October, James received the Offseason NBA Cares Community Assist Award and a $10,000 grant from the NBA towards his foundation. The NBA honored James with the award for the opening of his I Promise School last summer in Akron, OH, for over 240 third and fourth grade students. The public elementary school also includes a Family Resource Center that provides job and legal support, GED classes, a food pantry and other services for parents and family members of students.
With all the fanfare surrounding James’ I Promise School, some may have forgotten the $42 million worth of scholarships he pledged to the University of Akron in 2015. His gift will help cover the cost of four-year college degrees for approximately 1,000 local students from his foundation’s I Promise program. In addition to opening the school and granting scholarships, LeBron has also donated many millions over the years to other education and youth development organizations around the country, including After-School All-Stars, Boys & Girls Clubs, and Right Moves for Youth.
In 2016, James and his business partner Maverick Carter donated $2.5 million to the new Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, D.C. They were joined by numerous other athlete and celebrity donors, including Michael Jordan who donated $5 million. James and Carter’s gift went towards the museum’s “Muhammad Ali: A Force For Change” exhibit, which celebrated Ali’s legacy and efforts to fight social injustice — something James has become increasingly active in over the years too.
From James’ NMAAHC donation to his variety of media productions, including “Shut Up and Dribble,” a three-part docu-series that explores the role of athletes as social activists, and “Kneading Dough,” a video series that seeks to normalize conversations around personal finance, James recognizes the importance of not just giving to underserved communities but also empowering them.
LeBron James, fourth all-time scorer in the NBA, is the definition of what it means to be (much) more than an athlete.
Stay up to date with the LeBron James Family Foundation!
In honor of Black History Month, NBA teams partnered with the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) to encourage athletes, fans, students and law enforcement officers to become “Champions of Change” this past month. Teams around the league partnered with RISE to host a variety of initiatives to celebrate unity and equality and educate people of all ages and backgrounds on ways they can fight social injustice and increase harmony in their communities…Read More