NBA Legend Charles Barkley is larger than life. He’s a hall-of-fame basketball player, being featured on the NBA’s top 50 & top 75 greatest players lists. He’s also revolutionized sports broadcasting as the no-filter, hilarious centerpiece of the Emmy-award winning Inside The NBA studio show on TNT. His most impressive career exploits, however, is away from the sports world. Barkley is a noted philanthropist, using his wealth to give to various charities around the nation and institutions of higher learning.
Barkley is an acclaimed alumnus of Auburn University, having donated millions of dollars to the institution in recent years. He also has a penchant for donating to HBCUs, as he has given $1 million dollars to Tuskegee, Morehouse, Alabama A&M, Morehouse and Clark Atlanta. Just this month, as reported by the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Ernie Suggs, he added Spelman College as the latest historically black college to receive a $1 million dollar donation. According to Barkley, he donated because of Spelman Student Leader Jordyn Hudson. Jordyn’s father John is Barkley’s longtime business partners.
Barkley spoke to local Alabama media outlet AL.com about his motivation behind the donation, saying, “John has been a great mentor, a great friend and a great business partner. I was ready to do another HBCU and with his daughter doing great things at Spelman, so I told him, ‘Why not there?’”
Jordyn currently serves as SGA Sophomore Class president, winning the position in the Spring Elections. Spelman, ranked in consecutive years by the US News & World Report as the #1 HBCU in the nation, is undergoing several changes. The college just appointed Helene Gayle as it’s 11th President in April and announced a $250 million dollar funding campaign called “Spelman Ascends” in 2021 to expand educational offerings. The donation by Charles Barkley is certainly a step in the right direction for Spelman college as it continues to grow and thrive.