Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Award
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Social Justice Champion Finalist: Harrison Barnes
Leading up to the 2020 election, he emphasized the importance of civic engagement and voting through speaking engagements
Over the last year, Harrison Barnes has provided meaningful support to youth, families and frontline workers in Sacramento, Dallas and Ames, IA, and has also been a vocal advocate for voter rights, addressing systemic racism and investing in Black youth.
Leading up to the 2020 election, he emphasized the importance of civic engagement and voting through speaking engagements, a collaboration with Be.Woke.Vote and casting a ballot himself on National Vote Early Day at Golden 1 Center.
As part of the NBA restart, Barnes dedicated each Kings game to a different organization supporting racial justice – including the Trayvon Martin Foundation, the Botham Jean Foundation, The Atatiana Project, Mothers Against Police Brutality, the Michael Brown Foundation, Tamir Rice Foundation, Champion in the Making and the African American Policy Forum – and contributed $25,000 to those created by the families of victims of police brutality and gun violence.
In October, he was named to the NBA Foundation’s inaugural Board of Directors, helping to guide its effort to further economic empowerment in the Black community. In February, Barnes announced his partnership with Goalsetter, a Black-owned finance app that provides an education-first banking experience, to open saving accounts for 500 youth from Build.Black. in Sacramento and TL Marsalis Elementary in Dallas.
— Sacramento Kings (@SacramentoKings) January 7, 2021
He also launched a series entitled “Conversations with Harrison,” in which he speaks with nonprofit and community leaders, educators, athletes, elected officials and business leaders to promote their work and bring attention to their causes. Barnes has selected Center for Policing Equity as the recipient of his donation.