Webber Receives Community Assist Award
Posted Mar 13 2003 4:06PM
Kings forward honored for outreach in February
NEW YORK, March 13 -- Sacramento Kings forward Chris Webber, a five-time NBA All-Star, is the recipient of the NBA Community Assist Award for his community outreach during the month of February.
Webber, who has a significant collection of African-American artifacts, documents and books, recently arranged for his collection to be on exhibit at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. From Jan. 24 to March 9 more than 23,000 people viewed the exhibit -- a record-setting month for visitors by the museum.
In addition to the exhibit, Webber hosted "Webber's Workshop" on Feb. 15 for children from the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Sacramento, La Familia Counseling Center and Parkway Elementary School (SCUSD). The educational event discussed diversity and leadership and included presentations by Webber and six celebrity speakers and educators, including Oscar Robertson and his wife Yvonne, Wee Pals creator Morrie Turner, Sacramento Monarchs guard Ticha Penicheiro, Dr. Dorothy Enomoto and Stacey Shelnut from the Crocker Art Museum.
Each speaker worked with a small group in a hands-on, interactive activity related to a famous leader and a significant quote from them about diversity. At the conclusion of the event, each child received a copy of Celebrating Black History with Wee Pals. To view Webber's Collection, please log on to www.kings.com.
"It is important to me to share with kids of all races so they can see everyone has obstacles in their lives," said Webber. "It's important to let everyone know that if someone like Phillis Wheatley, the second woman to ever write a book and the first African-American woman to be published, can overcome the obstacles she faced in her life, so can they."
Earlier in the month, Webber was honored with the inaugural Kings/Oscar Robertson "Triple-Double" Award. The award is presented annually to the Kings player who exemplifies a "triple" on the court by being a team leader, having a strong all-around game and embodying the spirit of sportsmanship. In addition, recipients display a "double" off the court in their commitment to the community service and to family.
Since his arrival in Sacramento, Webber has donated a group of tickets for each Kings home game to local underprivileged youth to attend Kings games. Almost 2,000 children have attended games with their families as a part of C-Webb's Crew, who on many occasions have the opportunity to meet with Webber after the game. He is also active in assisting children who have experienced unusual hardships throughout their lives, often inviting them to Kings games as his guest.
Webber founded "The Chris Webber Foundation" for troubled youth in his hometown of Detroit. The foundation provides scholarships to students who strive to do their best in the classroom and in the community. He also formed "The Faithful Steward Foundation" to provide direct assistance to individuals in need. Webber has also donated money to the Detroit Police Athletic League, earmarked for the renovation of the Boysville PAL on Wagner Street, and is active in the Kings Read to Achieve program.
Webber joins the San Antonio Spurs' Malik Rose (January), Detroit Pistons' Michael Curry (December), Dallas Mavericks' Michael Finley (November) and Philadelphia 76ers' Todd MacCulloch (October) in the Community Assist Award winners' circle for the 2002-03 NBA season. Webber is also the third Kings player to receive the community assist award. Other Kings recipients include Lawrence Funderburke (December 2000) and Vlade Divac (July 2001).
The NBA Community Assist Award is given out monthly by the league to recognize players for their charitable efforts. The award honors the NBA player who reflects the passion that the league and its players have for their communities. All 29 NBA teams are able to nominate a player for the award each month.
The NBA, its teams and players are committed to programs that improve the quality of life for all people and has created and implemented programs that address important social issues, with a special emphasis on reading and online literacy initiatives for children. The NBA and its 29 teams make a difference in North America through the Read to Achieve Program, donations to charities and the implementation of community outreach initiatives, and through the production and airing of public service announcements.