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The gift is the largest donation from a sports figure the museum has ever received.
After speaking out about Black lives and police violence and donating $1 million to finding solutions, Michael Jordan has made another major contribution by donating $5 million to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture set to open in September.
In a statement to The Washington Post, Jordan said, “I am grateful for the opportunity to support this museum. I also am indebted to the historic contributions of community leaders and athletes such as Jesse Owens, whose talent, commitment and perseverance broke racial barriers and laid the groundwork for the successful careers of so many African Americans in athletics and beyond.”
The basketball icon also gave a jersey he wore during the 1996 NBA finals to the museum’s permanent collection. To thank Jordan for the gifts, a section of the museum’s sports gallery will be named in his honor. The museum’s founding director Lonnie G. Bunch III stated, “His gift will enable our visitors to explore how sports were used to break barriers as a way to gain full participation in American society.”
The 400,000-square-foot museum is currently under construction, but will open Sepember 24.
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