Alonzo Mourning is founder of Alonzo Mourning Charities (AM Charities), a not-for-profit 501©(3) public fundraising foundation, created to encourage the educational development of youth by developing programs and youth enrichment centers that promote positive change in low socioeconomic communities. Since 1997, Mourning has raised more than $6.5 million for various programs that aid in the development of children and their families. In addition to supporting numerous educational initiatives, Mourning focuses his attention to stimulating the development of youth enrichment centers. With the help of donors, Mourning opened the first center in 2003 in the historic area of Overtown, in South Florida, known as the Overtown Youth Center with plans that call for more centers to open in the future.
Major initiatives led by Mourning include more than seven annual events held throughout the country such as Zo’s Summer Groove, as well as the Honey Shine Mentoring Program that works to empower young girls to shine as women. Mourning is an advocate for youth initiatives and foster care programs that assist abused, abandoned and neglected kids. He is a sought-after speaker engaging audiences of all sizes and ages on the importance of education, leadership and perseverance.
Mourning is consistently recognized for his charitable efforts receiving numerous awards such as the NBA’s Community Assist Award in 2006; National Urban League’s Outstanding Community Service Award in 2003; Silver Medallion Community Service Award by the National Conference for Community and Justine in 2003; NBA’s J. Walter Kennedy Sportsmanship Award in 2002; and The Children’s Trust Excellence Award for Public Policy in 2007, to name a few.
Mourning was drafted as the number two pick, of the first round, by the Charlotte Hornets in the 1992 National Basketball Association’s (NBA) draft. After three successful years with the Hornets, Mourning moved on in 1995 to spend seven years with the Miami Heat leading the team to several Eastern division titles. Impressing others with the vigor and tenacity that he has put into being a defensive weapon for his team and an offensive nightmare for his opponents, Alonzo was selected to join an elite group of NBA players who represented the United States in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia.
Diagnosed with Focal Glomerulosclerosis (FSGS), a degenerative kidney ailment, at the start of the 2000-2001 season, Mourning led a campaign to fight FSGS and raised $2 million for research, education, and testing. He returned to the court after undergoing a kidney transplant in that same season and played in the remaining 13 games with the Miami Heat. In 2003 Mourning joined the New Jersey Nets but returned to Miami, a place he calls home, and rejoined the Miami Heat in 2005 where he was an integral part in leading the team to their first NBA Championship in the 2005-06 season. Mourning is a seven-time NBA All-Star and two-time Defensive Player of the Year (1999 and 2000). He is currently among the league’s leaders in blocked shots, field goal percentages and rebounds per game.
Mourning is a graduate of Georgetown University and holds a degree in Sociology. He and his wife, Tracy Wilson Mourning, reside in Miami, Florida with their two children – son Trey and daughter Myka.
kaynak : NBA