NBA Legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Becomes Global Cultural Ambassador for US

January 19, 2012

NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has been been given the role of global cultural ambassador for the US, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced on Wednesday

Abdul-Jabbar will begin his new role with a trip to Brazil from January 22-28, meeting with youth in Salvador and Rio de Janeiro to speak about education, social and racial tolerance, cultural understanding and using sports as a means of empowerment.

He will also participate in basketball clinics in both cities.

“I am excited and honored to serve my country as a cultural ambassador for the US Department of State,” said Abdul-Jabbar, who has turned his focus to African-American history and socio-economic justice since retiring from the NBA in 1989.

“I look forward to meeting with young people all over the world and discussing ways in which we can strengthen our understanding of one another through education, through sports, and through greater cultural tolerance.”

The 64-year-old spent 20 years in the NBA, winning six titles, and was named league MVP on a record six occasions.

Abdul-Jabbar remains the NBA’s all-time leading scorer with 38,387 points, and had his No. 33 retired by both the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers.