Michael Jordan and his eponymous Jordan Brand, has recently announced a new set of financial initiatives exclusively for Black excellence.
Making the announcement in a press release, it was however revealed that grants have already been issued to three renowned institutions in the United States; Morehouse College, a popular Historically Black College and University (HBCU); Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture; and Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting.
Jordan will be donating $3 million to the Smithsonian over the course of three years. He will be donating $1 million over two years to Morehouse, and make a donation of $1 million over two years to the Ida B. Wells Society.
“Education is crucial for understanding the Black experience today,” says Michael Jordan in the press release announcement. “We want to help people understand the truth of our past, and help tell the stories that will shape our future.”
In his reaction to the kind gesture, iconic director Spike Lee, who is a 1979 graduate of Morehouse College, said that Michael Jordan’s commitment to these Black institutions is to be commended. He also said that he hopes it inspires other Black celebrities to follow suit.
“These grants will be well-spent,” he said in the press release announcement. “There’s going to be a rich legacy of storytellers who will be supported by these programs. Many people are influenced to think a certain way about Black folks based on what they see on television and in Hollywood. We’ve got to tell our story.”
In their part, the Ida B. Wells Foundation said that they will use the grant to fund opportunities for students aspiring to become investigative journalists, and to provide professional development programs for professional journalists in the field.
Also, the Smithsonian said they will be using their grant to expand the Museum’s Talking About Race web portal and Let’s Talk speaker series, helping millions of online visitors explore ways to talk about race and racialized identity.