Black History Profiles: Day 11

Name: Magic Johnson

Basics: Hands down one of the greatest basketball players to ever pass through the NBA.  The name “Magic” was something coined after a sports writer witnessed him accomplishing some magical basketball feats during his high school years.  A great player who had contemporaries like Kareem Abdul-Jabar and Larry Bird.  He retired from the Lakers after revealing he had HIV.  His retirement from basketball wasn’t an ending, but the beginning of a business empire including several Starbucks franchises, some movie theaters and real estate holdings.

Why I Chose Him: I feel like Magic is another story of never giving up in the face of adversity.  That almost seems to be the African-American narrative in a lot of ways.  And I don’t think that narrative can be forgotten.  This man was diagnosed with a diseases that was considered a practical death sentence at the time.  That would defeat many a man, but instead he picked himself up and built an empire for himself.  He didn’t let a setback became his fate.  His entrepreneurial spirit is integral for African-Americans looking to build economic capital.


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