The 19th pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris hosted his own draft this week. However, instead of picking athletes, Harris held his “2019 Community Draft” to pick nine charities he’s supporting through a $1 million donation.
With a majority of funds going toward nonprofit organizations in Philadelphia focused on education, Harris announced at the “draft” each of the nine organizations he will support with his philanthropic investment, including the Center for Black Educator Development which will now be able to expand its teacher apprenticeship and literacy program from two to four schools.
"For someone of this stature in the community to see your vision, see it being implemented and say, 'I believe in that, I want to support you,' it's just deeply humbling," said Sharif El-Mekki, founder and CEO of The Center for Black Educator Development.
Signing a 5-year, $180 million deal with the 76ers this past summer, Harris continues to show his commitment to his adopted Philadelphia community. Among other initiatives, Harris held an empowerment event, entitled “Game Changers: Women in Sports, Tech & Literacy,” for middle school girls in Philadelphia this past March in celebration of Women’s History Month — just weeks after his trade from the Los Angeles Clippers.