Basketball culture and its connection to community, social justice

woman stands in a basketball court
Stephanie Rawlings-Blake is the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association Foundation, an organization that grants millions of dollars to programs around the globe.
Photo courtesy of the NBPA Foundation

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake works with professional basketball teams and NBA players off the court by exploring new ways to help professional athletes give back to their communities. 

But before she stepped into the world of basketball, Rawlings-Blake had a career in politics. She was elected as the youngest person to serve on Baltimore’s city council in 2007 at the age of 25. A few years later, in 2010, Rawlings-Blake was elected Baltimore’s mayor. 

Now, she has moved from politics and public service to philanthropy as the executive director of the National Basketball Players Association Foundation — which distributes millions of dollars in grants to organizations around the world.

MPR News host Angela Davis talks with Rawlings-Blake about the inspiring things that NBA teams — including the Timberwolves — are doing to support their communities. We also learn about the culture of basketball and its connection to social justice with Tru Pettigrew, the Chief Impact Officer for the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Minnesota Lynx.

Guests talk about basketball
MPR News host Angela Davis (left) talks with Tru Pettigrew in an MPR News studio in the Kling Public Media Center in St. Paul on Monday, Nov. 14.
Matt Alvarez


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