Tag: Member Spotlight

NBRPA membership is comprised of a diverse group of former professional basketball players of the NBA, ABA, WNBA, and Harlem Globetrotters.

Each month, we'll spotlight one NBRPA member from each league to recognize their career on the court as well as the impact they are now having in their communities.

Lafayette “Fat” Lever

NBA

Lafayette "Fat" Lever is the founder and current president of the Legends of Basketball Phoenix Chapter (legendsofbasketballphx.com). As a business owner, entrepreneur, and community advocate, Fat is dedicated to working towards building strong kids and communities.  The Legends of Basketball Phoenix Chapter offers youth sports and education programs and volunteers to work with community projects and non-profits. Including Feed My Starving Children, Luis Zendajas Foundation, Community Toy Drives, and special events benefiting children, education, and communities. You can also find our Legends hosting Full Court Press events and supporting local Basketball Clubs (Club Teams, Skills Camps, and Clinics). They also lend their support to Technology for Education Projects, STEM Education Programs, and Youth Entrepreneurship Programs. You can find more details here. https://legendsofbasketballphx.com/chapter-programs/

Our Legends lend their celebrity status as motivational speakers, presenters, judges, mentors, and through monetary donations. The Legends of Basketball Phoenix Chapter has sponsored everything from local club teams, to buying computers for schools, large toy drives, and even donating to our local make-a-wish foundation. They have supported events for Kids, Cancer Survivors, and Women Owned Businesses. The Chapter has a community presence everywhere that has a need. Fat Lever supports all the good in our communities, anywhere that needs support and dedicated attention. Playing and interacting with kids, talking to parents and teachers. As club president, he sets an amazing example for what caring for our communities should look like.

Throughout his career, Fat was considered one of the NBA's best point guards. Arizona State University honored him with an induction into the University's Hall of Fame in 1988, in 2004 he became a Pac-10 Hall of Honor inductee, and in 2012  his jersey hung in the rafters at, what was then known as, the Wells Fargo Arena at Arizona State. On December 2, 2017, the NBA's Denver Nuggets retired Fat's number 12 jersey during a winning home game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

 Fat's NBA Career didn't end with this retirement from playing ball. He also served as the director of player development for the Sacramento Kings, as well as a color analyst. You can currently hear Fat broadcasting with Altitude Sports

Oliver Darden

ABA

Oliver Darden is a former professional basketball player who played three seasons in the ABA. Darden attended Western High School in Detroit, Michigan, where he was Mr. Basketball for Detroit public schools in 1962. Darden played basketball for the University of Michigan and was a three year starter as part of the team that won three Big Ten championships in 1964, 1965, and 1966, a feat that has not been accomplished since then. He was chosen by his teammates to become the first African American in the history of the University of Michigan basketball to be elected as captain of the team. Darden was also chosen as one of the University of Michigan's top 25 Senior students by the Prestigious Michigamau Honorary fraternity in 1966.

Following his graduation from the University of Michigan, Darden was selected in the 3rd round as the 22nd overall pick in the NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons, then going on to play in the ABA from 1967 to 1970 as a member of the Indiana Pacers, New York Nets, and Kentucky Colonels. He won ABA championship in 1970 with the Pacers.

His past Board of Directors involvements includes: Chairman of the Board of the Gulf Coast African American Chamber of Commerce, WSRE television Board of Directors, Baptist Hospital Board of Directors, Vice Chairman of the Andrews Institute, The Pensacola Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, YMCA Board of Directors, University of West Florida Business Advisory Board, 100 Hundred Black Men Organization, and numerous involvements with youth organizations, speeches, coaching and motivational speeches.

Today, Darden is a community volunteer and substitute teacher, as well as the owner & operator of The Coffee Cup in Pensacola, Florida.

Janice Braxton

WNBA

Janice Lawrence Braxton is one of the greatest legends to ever play in women's basketball.  She was born on June 7th in 1962, during the peak of racial disparities and discrimination of the South in Lucedale, Mississippi.

She would later find an outlet, away from all of the stress of mistreatment that was going on during the civil rights movement, picking up a love for women's basketball. Janice would work so hard in the sport, that she would later become the nations most sought after recruit, dominating the game at George County High School. Recruited by nearly every top tier team in college women's basketball, Janice would choose to play for Louisiana Tech, under the leadership of legendary Hall Of Fame coach, Leon Barmore. While at Louisiana Tech, Janice Lawrence would lead the Techsters to the Nation’s 1st ever National Championship in 1981, and then again in 1982.

After her historic college career, Janice would play in total, 15 straight years of professional women's basketball in Italy; because there were no WNBA professional opportunities yet in the U.S. at that time. She would dominate in Italy and become a super star all over the world before finally getting to showcase her talent professionally in her own country when the WNBA inaugurated in 1997.

Janice, one of the original pioneers of women's basketball, would finally get to come home and play for her home country in the opening season of the WNBA in 1997, playing for the Cleveland Rockers for 3 seasons until 1999.  In 2003 she became an assistant coach for the WNBA Rockers all the way until the team disbanded in 2005.

Before retiring from the sport, Janice Lawrence Braxton would accumulate one of the greatest treasure troves of honors, awards, and accomplishments ever tallied in the game.  She was the 1982 NCAA Tournaments leading scorer and National Championship MVP, a 3 time College All-American, 2 time Kodak All-American, WBCA player of the year, 1984 Wade Trophy recipient, 1983 gold medalist on the Pan Am team, Olympic gold medalist in 1984, won 6 European Cup Championships, 6 Italian Championships, was inducted into Louisiana Tech's Hall Of Fame in 1987, and into the Nation’s Women's Basketball Hall Of Fame of Knoxville, Tennessee in 1996.

Janice now proudly serves as a member of the NBRPA in the capacity as treasurer to the Cleveland, Ohio chapter, where she also helps to plan and organize events in her community.

Harold “Lefty” Williams

Harlem Globetrotters

Harold Williams, a native of Jersey City, NJ has become affectionately known around the world as Lefty after making history as the first ever left-handed Showman in Harlem Globetrotter history. Leading up to this astounding accomplishment and before the world got to know Lefty, Harold began making a name for himself as a high school basketball player. He scored 1000 points and 985 rebounds in only three years on his high school varsity team. In college, he earned defensive player of the year twice. One at Montclair State University as a freshman and again as a junior at New Jersey City University. More impressively, he signed a professional contract after attending a Division 3 school. While many deemed this as impossible, this accomplishment launched what would be a 15-year professional career playing in England, Germany, Japan, with the Harlem Ambassadors.

While he has accomplished many things within the world of basketball, Lefty proclaims that this distinction has been one of the most defining moments in his career. Another defining moment in his career has been in his role as the owner of his show entertainment basketball career, The Harlem Dreams. In this role, one Lefty takes great joy in providing audiences with a source of community pride while remaining firm on the company’s beliefs in unquestionable integrity, being service minded, exhibiting community involvement while continuing to focus on dreaming. All of which are a direct reflection of one of Lefty’s defining achievements off the basketball court – The Harold Lefty Williams Dare2Dream Foundation.

The Harold Lefty Williams Dare2Dream Foundation was launched in 2008, alongside his wife Shyneefa, as the Dare2Dream Campaign in an effort to provide local youth with life changing experiences that would help to broaden their perspectives of all that the world had to offer them. Since then, the campaign has grown into a non-profit organization which strives to do even more! Now, Lefty seeks to not only expose youth to what the world has to offer them, but also to reveal to them what they have to offer the world. His mission is to help young people unwrap the treasures that they have inside. His foundation was recognized by the National Basketball Association (NBA) G-League team the Wisconsin Herd during a Black History Month Celebration. During this celebration, his foundation’s logo was featured on the jerseys of the team’s players. Through events like these, his foundation continues to strive towards a mission of embracing children and inspiring lives.

As Lefty seeks to continue to enrich the lives of youth globally, he has transcended this desire in his role as both a husband and father. Often speaking of his wife and childhood friend, Shyneefa, as one of the reasons that he is who he is today, Lefty also attributes much of this to being a father of three beautiful children- Kiara, EJ & CJ. Naturally, Lefty views the role of dad as one of the most important titles he’ll ever hold. Along with the privilege of raising his children, he also manages their careers in Hollywood, which includes credits on multiple Disney and Nickelodeon projects as well as the ABC Network. With this comes the honor of developing his family into a “multigenerational family of talent which bridges the gap between professional sports and entertainment”, as noted in a Bloomberg article on his family’s multi-year partnership with Canadian based lifestyle brand – RYU (Respect Your Universe).

Currently, Lefty remains determined to build a legacy that positively impacts generations to come. As he works on the release of his first book, the work of his Dare2Dream Foundation, being an active member of the National Basketball Retired Players Association as well as through partnerships with other organizations helping to shape the lives of people in their own communities, Lefty continues to make marks on this world.

NBRPA membership is comprised of a diverse group of former professional basketball players of the NBA, ABA, WNBA, and Harlem Globetrotters.

Each month, we'll spotlight one NBRPA member from each league to recognize their career on the court as well as the impact they are now having in their communities.

Scott Williams

NBA

Scott Williams is a retired American professional basketball player in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Standing at 6' 10", he was capable of playing as a power forward or a center. Early in his professional career, Williams earned three NBA Finals rings as he contributed off the bench during the Chicago Bulls' first three-peat championships from 1991–1993. He developed into a front-court reserve during his fifteen seasons in the NBA, where he was known for his hustle and strong defense. Since his retirement, Williams has coached in the NBA Development League and NBA, as well as commentating for a variety of NBA teams and becoming a published author. Williams, in 2023 wrote “Through The Fire: A Memoir of Trauma and Loss, Basketball and Triumph” - a transparent story of his remarkable life’s journey to the highest level of success as a basketball player, and the depths of personal trauma and pain.  

Williams attended and played basketball for Glen A. Wilson High School in Hacienda Heights, California, where he led the 1986 squad to the 1986 C.I.F State Championship Title. Williams was named a McDonald's All-American in 1986 and enrolled at the University of North Carolina.

Undrafted in the 1990 NBA draft, after four years in college, Williams was signed by the Chicago Bulls in 1990. He played four seasons in Chicago, mostly as a reserve, and won three championship rings in his very first three NBA seasons. On 7 June 1991, in game 3 of the Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers, he scored four points (all from the free throw line), grabbed two rebounds, and had two assists in only 11 minutes of play, in an eventual 104–96 overtime Bulls win. On February 16, 1994, Williams scored his career-high of 22 points in a 109-101 loss against the Miami Heat. 

In 1994, Williams was signed by the Philadelphia 76ers, where he played for 4½ seasons before being traded to the Milwaukee Bucks in 1999. His career saw a resurgence of sorts in Milwaukee, where he averaged career highs of 7.6 points and 6.6 rebounds during the 1999–2000 season. On December 15, of that season, Williams scored 17 points and grabbed 15 rebounds in a win against the Orlando Magic. While in Milwaukee, Williams was considered a key part of the 2001 Bucks team that made it to the conference finals before losing to his former team, the Philadelphia 76ers.  Until his retirement in 2005, at the age of 37, he also played for the Denver Nuggets, the Phoenix Suns (one ½ seasons), the Dallas Mavericks (27 games), and the Cleveland Cavaliers. During his final season, he became LeBron James's oldest teammate and the only one born in the 1960s. 

After playing, Williams accepted the Cavaliers' offer to become a color commentator for the team's telecasts on FSN Ohio, beginning in 2005–06, and working alongside Michael Reghi. After two seasons, on 20 October 2007, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported he would join the Milwaukee Bucks' commentary team.  Besides doing pre and post-game analysis for home games, he also called some games while a popular emailer on the Tony Kornheiser radio show.

In 2008, Williams became a color commentator for another former team, the Phoenix Suns, broadcasting with Tom Leander and Gary Bender. During the 2012–13 season, Williams was an assistant coach for the Idaho Stampede in the NBA Development League, and prior to the 2013–14 season, Williams was hired as an assistant coach for the Milwaukee Bucks under Larry Drew.

In 2020, on the 'Sixers Talk' podcast, Williams credited Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls with helping him have an NBA career. Williams had played four years at North Carolina but had gone undrafted in the NBA draft. Jordan invited Williams to a scrimmage, which also included other NBA pros, so Williams could prove his worth. Later, Jordan called then-Bulls general manager Jerry Krause and stated "I think Scott Williams might be able to help us out". The Bulls would eventually sign Williams and he would earn three NBA Finals rings (in his first three years in the league) when the Bulls capped the first of their two NBA Finals three-peat wins, from 1991-1993. Williams goes on to state "I always say I am the luckiest undrafted player in the history of the NBA, if there is such a thing".

James Darel Carrier 

ABA

James Darel Carrier is a former professional basketball player. Born in Warren County, Kentucky, Carrier played his high school basketball at the now defunct Bristow High School. A 6'3" guard, Carrier played college basketball at Western Kentucky University under coach E.A. Diddle. Carrier was selected in the 9th round of the 1964 NBA draft by the St. Louis Hawks. However, Carrier originally played AAU basketball and later signed with and played for the Kentucky Colonels of the rival American Basketball Association (ABA) 

Carrier was a three-time ABA All-Star with the Colonels (1968, 1969, 1970), teaming with Louie Dampier to form the most explosive backcourt in the ABA; in each of the league's first three seasons, both averaged at least 20 points per game. Carrier played for the Memphis Tams during the 1972–73 season and then retired from pro basketball with 7,011 career points. 

He is a member of the ABA All-Time Team and had the highest career 3 point shooting percentage in ABA history. 

Carrier and his wife, Donna, a retired schoolteacher live on a farm just west of Oakland, Kentucky.[3] They have two sons, Jonathan and Josh. The Carrier's youngest son, Josh, played basketball for the University of Kentucky for Tubby Smith Like his father, he was also a guard. 

He played for the United States men's national basketball team at the 1967 FIBA World Championship. 

Darel has been very successful in the Bowling Green, Kentucky area. He owns & leases multiple large farm(s) outside of the city of Bowling Green, where he grows corn & bean. He has two cattle ranches. He owns Darel Carrier Realty, an estate broker & land developer with 25 homes in that area. He is a sought-after auctioneer in western Kentucky & surrounding areas. He was a high school basketball coach & a shooting coach for local high school students. He has two sons who both were well-respected high school and college basketball players. 

Developing a 90k-person grave site. One son was Mr. Basketball for the State of Kentucky & attended the University of Kentucky on scholarship. He also owns a small airfield for small prop planes to land and take off while crop dusting. He has two Airbnbs in the Bowling Green Area. 

Tocarra Williams 

WNBA

Toccara Williams is a former point guard who played for the WNBA's San Antonio Silver Stars in 2004. Prior to playing in the WNBA, she played college basketball at Texas A&M from 2000 to 2004, where in her senior season, she led the nation in steals per game among Division I teams with an average of 4.1 steals per game. 

She is one of only two NCAA Division I women's players to have recorded a steal in each game of her career, and is only one of two players to have also recorded an assist in each of her college games played. 

Toccara was born to teen aged parents and at the age of 8 her father was shot and killed by an unknown male. She inherited her father's nickname “Sweet”, and would use the name for her non profit organization titled “Sweet Rebound”. Toccara founded this organization in 2012. The mission of Sweet Rebound is to use sports as a platform for education. 

Toccara has coached middle school, high school, AAU's, and at the EYBL level. She's trained kids individually and in groups. She's hosted tournaments, camps and clinics. She's even had her own scouting service and digital magazine which help bring exposure to kids to help them get seen by college coaches. 

While playing in the WNBA, Toccara obtained her real estate license which started her journey to entrepreneurship. Toccara believes that real estate goes hand and hand with what she did as a point guard, where she sets her teammates up for success. She’s been branded in real estate as “The Basketball Realtor”, becoming highly successful in the Miami area. 

Williams also has a podcast called “The Crossover”, where she interviews current, former athletes, and coaches on how sports has helped them crossover into their new chapter of life. In addition to her podcast, she also hosts a sports segment for the largest gospel radio show in South Florida, WMBM Gospel 1490, which is called “Pay Attention 2 Sports”. 

Toccara currently serves as the President of the National Basketball Retired Players Association - Miami Chapter, where she and board members give back and make a difference in their community with service, time and resources. 

Michael Douglas 

Harlem Globetrotters

“Luck only happens when preparation and opportunity meet”. Michael Douglas shares this message with youth because it also guides his life. Growing up in Memphis, TN, Michael Douglas had a love for the game of basketball. His dedication and determination led him to be an outstanding basketball player at all levels. 

Michael was an outstanding athlete at Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis and became a leading athlete at Dyersburg State College in Tennessee. The opportunity presented itself in 1986 for Michael to try out for the world famous Harlem Globetrotters along with 1500 other outstanding athletes. Michael was the top pick for the Harlem Globetrotters and toured with the team from 1986 -1993. 

Michael has traveled to over 100 countries entertaining crowds as the 7th Showman in the history of the Harlem Globetrotters – sharing a positive attitude and embracing diversity. In 1991, Michael founded the Michael Douglas Youth Foundation (MDYF) in order to help individuals and communities realize their optimal potential. The mission of the youth foundation is to provide activities that are fun, educational and provide a model of healthy living. 

The MDYF strive to help communities provide positive and educational activities for youth. 

The Harlem Legends were founded and are led by Michael Douglas and are a part of the Michael Douglas Youth Foundation. The MDYF utilizes the Harlem Legends to carry out the mission and activities of the youth foundation. The Harlem Legends are a group of professional athletes, former players of the Harlem Globetrotters, NBA, NFL, past USA Olympians and other professionals. The foundation provides various activities to schools, youth organizations, non – profits and the total community, which can be utilized as fund raisers. 

Michael currently participates in a variety of community activities with various organizations across the country. He has served as a motivational speaker for the Atlanta Committee for the 1996 Olympic Youth Speakers Bureau. In addition, Michael has made appearances through the Scottish Rite Children Medical Center, American Cancer Society, Arthritis Foundation, and Mothers Against Violence, St. Jude Children’s Hospital, Help Rebuild LA Program, Atlanta Hawks, USA Military Bases, numerous schools and more. He has also authored a children’s book: Lil Mike’s Magic Ball. 

NBRPA membership is comprised of a diverse group of former professional basketball players of the NBA, ABA, WNBA, and Harlem Globetrotters.

Each month, we'll spotlight one NBRPA member from each league to recognize their career on the court as well as the impact they are now having in their communities.

Mario West

NBA

Mario West is an American former professional basketball player who is currently the Director of Off the Court for the NBPA. He previously played in the NBA for the Atlanta Hawks and New Jersey Nets.

West was a Douglas County player of the year as a senior at Douglas County High School. He also earned honorable mention all-state honors after averaging 22 points and 10 rebounds per game. West was team captain as a junior and senior.

West played college basketball for Georgia Tech. He joined the Tech squad as a walk-on in the fall of 2002, redshirted in 2002–03, and earned a scholarship for the 2003–04 season. He played in 103 games, averaging 3.2 points over his career, and 4.9 over his last two seasons. West departed Georgia Tech 16th on the school's all-time list for steals despite averaging only 13.9 minutes per game in four years. He was voted team captain during the 2006–07 season.

West won the 2007 NCAA State Farm Slam Dunk Contest held during the tournament's Final Four week.

West received a Bachelor of Science degree in management from Georgia Tech on May 6, 2006, and continued his studies during his final college basketball season with courses in Economics.

West went undrafted in the 2007 NBA draft but was quickly signed by the Atlanta Hawks, a team he spent his first two seasons with. West spent the first half of the 2009–10 season playing in the NBA Development League for the Maine Red Claws, before re-joining the Hawks in January 2010. He remained with the Hawks for the rest of the season, and in 156 games for the team over three seasons, he averaged 0.8 points in 4.4 minutes per game.

West was known as a hard worker and an intense defender. Atlanta Hawks Head Coach Mike Woodson was quoted as saying "I've been around this league a long time and I don't think I've ever seen a guy play as hard as Mario plays. He pushes guys in practice to play hard and if you don't play hard he embarrasses you in terms of just knocking the hell out of you." Teammate Acie Law said "You can ask anybody in this locker room, Mario's the hardest worker on the team. You have to be at practice to see him. His motor never stops."

West re-joined the Maine Red Claws for the 2010–11 season, later signing with the New Jersey Nets in March 2011. He appeared in six games for the Nets to complete the 2010–11 season, averaging 3.7 points, 1.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.2 steals in 19.3 minutes per game.

In June 2011, West joined Cocolos de San Pedro de Macorís of the Liga Nacional de Baloncesto. His stint lasted until early August.

On August 2, 2011, West signed with Tezenis Verona of Italy for the 2011–12 season.

In June 2012, West moved to the Philippines where he joined the Meralco Bolts. In September 2012, he joined Cañeros del Este and helped them win the league championship while garnering Finals MVP honors in early October. Later that month, he joined La Villa for a short stint.

In January 2013, West signed with Fuerza Regia of Mexico for the rest of the 2012–13 season. In June 2013, he re-joined the Meralco Bolts. He then returned to Fuerza Regia for the 2013–14 season. In March 2014, he moved to France and signed with SO Maritime Boulogne. In May 2014, he returned the Meralco Bolts for a third stint.

In October 2014, West signed with La Unión of Argentina for the 2014–15 season. He sustained an injury in February 2015 and was ruled out for the rest of the season. He remained in Argentina for the 2015–16 season, signing with Juventud Sionista.

In May 2016, West returned to Georgia Tech in Atlanta when he was hired as the director of player personnel as part of head coach Josh Pastner's staff.

West is the son of Gerald and Angie West.

He has volunteered to work with patients at Egleston Children's Hospital in Atlanta since his college days in 2004. This includes activities such as hosting pizza parties for the children.

West co-authored a book "Defend the Dream" with his childhood friend Shakyna Bolden. He shares the lessons he learned in dealing with the challenges of life.

George Tinsley

ABA

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, George Tinsley played competitively at Male High School and college basketball at Kentucky Wesleyan College, where he was a member of the teams that won the NCAA Men's Division II Basketball

Championship in 1966, 1968 and 1969, being named Most Outstanding Player in 1969. Tinsley was also a two time All American at Kentucky Wesleyan

Tinsley was selected in the sixth round of the 1969 NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls and in the 1969 ABA Draft by the Oakland Oaks.

Tinsley ended up playing with the Kentucky Colonels during the 1969–70 ABA season, averaging 6.3 points and 4.0 rebounds per game in 83 regular season games. Tinsley averaged 9.5 points per game and 5.3 rebounds per game for the Colonels in 12 games of the 1970 ABA Playoffs, as the Colonels defeated the New York Nets in the Eastern Division Semifinals and lost to the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Division Finals. He signed with the Decatur Bullets of the Continental Basketball Association on December 30, 1970.

Tinsley then played for The Floridians during the 1971–72 ABA season, averaging 3.7 points and 1.2 rebounds per game in the regular season and 2.0 points per game in the 1972 ABA Playoffs as the Floridians lost in the Eastern Division Semifinals to the Virginia Squires. Tinsley was selected by the New York Nets in the 1972 dispersal draft of Floridians players upon the franchise's dissolution, but he did not play for the Nets.

After his professional basketball career, Tinsley applied his leadership and organizational skills to building and leading two companies that operate over 60 restaurants in Florida and Kentucky. He has also received numerous honorary doctorates and has been inducted into several halls of fame for his athletic and business achievements.

Tinsley is a sought-after motivational speaker, coach, and consultant, and has been featured in local and national media. He resides in Winter Haven, Florida, with his wife and two adult children. Tinsley was later a successful businessman with Kentucky Fried Chicken and was inducted into the Kentucky Wesleyan College Alumni Hall of Fame.

George Tinsley Sr. values family above all else.

He married his college sweetheart, Seretha, and together they have been married for over 38 years, raising their two adult children, Penni and George II. Tinsley strongly believes that the family that works together stays together and has included his children in his business operations since they were young.

The Tinsley’s started their restaurant business with a KFC franchise in Auburndale, Florida in 1984, which provided an opportunity for Penni and George II to learn the value of hard work and ethics and develop their entrepreneurial skills. Today, Penni and George II are part of the Tinsley Family Business and play significant roles of responsibility.

The Tinsleys have 22 godchildren, three of whom are involved in the family businesses, while the others have gone on to achieve success in their own endeavors. George and Seretha continue to diversify and develop their family businesses, which started with PenGeo, Inc., named after their children.

Bridget Pettis

WNBA

Bridget Pettis is a former player and coach for the WNBA. She is an American former college and professional basketball player who was a guard in the WNBA for eight seasons during the 1990s and 2000s. Pettis played college basketball for the University of Florida, and professionally for the Phoenix Mercury and the Indiana Fever of the WNBA.

Bridget Pettis was born in East Chicago, Indiana where she became a legend at East Chicago Central High School. She was known for her crafty moves, quickness, and high scoring play as one of the Nation’s most sought after point guard in the country.

Bridget would end up attending a junior college at Central Arizona, before transferring to the University of Florida where she propelled the Gators into the national spotlight with her superior point guard play. Memorably, she completed eight three-point shots against the Georgia Bulldogs on January 20, 1993—still the Gators' single-game record. She graduated from the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in 1993.

The Phoenix Mercury selected Pettis in the first round (seventh pick overall) of the 1997 WNBA draft. She played for the Mercury from 1997 to 2001, the Indiana Fever in 2002 and 2003, and the Mercury again in 2006. Her first two seasons with the Mercury were the most productive, when she started fifty-six of sixty games played, and averaged over fourteen point per game.[2] In her eight- season WNBA career, she played in 228 games, started seventy-one of them, and scored 1,408 points.[2]

In 2013, Bridget, Frank and Eddie Johnson started a club team called Team 2j Thunder. Three months later, Pettis was hired as an assistant coach for the WNBA L.A. Sparks.

In 2014, Pettis was named Assistant Coach for the Dallas Wings, where she coached for 4 seasons before retiring from the Dallas organization.

On January 23, 2019 Bridget returned from retirement to accept a position as an Assistant Coach with the WNBA Sky, but in 2020 she decided to follow her heart and focus on her non-profit organization, Project Roots.

Bridget became the founder of Project Roots AZ, where she championed her community and now the nation in a push to have more people grow their own food. Her efforts garnished so much national prominence, that Washington D.C. would ask that she testify before congress.

Bridget Pettis got inducted into the Indiana Hall of Fame, and in 2023 she became the recipient of the Golden Standard, and Game Changer Award.

Bridget has created her own platform where she displays her heart for God and her love for giving back to her community.

Ovie Everett Dotson

Harlem Globetrotters

Ovie Everett Dotson has built great relationships worldwide in sports and business. He is an accomplished retired professional basketball player, successful businessman, and an exceptional motivational speaker.

Ovie is a native Texan who attended Sam Houston High School in San Antonio Tx and The University of Texas in Austin. He accepted a four- year scholarship to attend The University of Texas at Austin (UT) and joined the Longhorns men’s basketball team. At UT, Ovie was one of only a handful of Black athletes at the University in the mid-1970s.

Ovie would go on to carry the banner of the University of Texas Longhorns with him as a member of the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters professional basketball team, Ovie led the famed traveling “Ambassadors of Goodwill” onto the court for eight seasons, starting each game, playing in more than 100 countries around the world, and entertaining crowds with his spectacular basketball skills and soaring slam dunks. He had the privilege to play with Harlem Globetrotter great Curly Neal and the first female player Lynette Woodard. Ovie, his teammates, and those who preceded him on the world’s stage transformed the image of the skills of Black basketball players of his era. Having an amazing college career and then traveled the globe as a Harlem Globetrotter. Ovie retired from the Globetrotters and is currently a member of the NBA Retired Basketball Association.

With a passion for mentoring and supporting young boys and girls. Ovie established the Ovie Dotson Basketball Camp at the Boys and Girls Club of San Antonio and the Basketball Magic Camp in Australia which he founded. The camp helped Australian players receive college scholarships in the USA. Ovie has also served as the director for basketball camps hosted by Spur’s great and his UT college roommate Johnny Moore. Ovie has received numerous awards and honors for his love of community athletic achievements and community service. In September 2022, Ovie was inducted into the UT Texas Athletics Hall of Honor alongside NBA great Kevin Durant.

Ovie has held management positions at the regional and national level in numerous leading American companies over the last 20 years. He is currently the Senior District Manager of the Residential and Commercial Division with Freudenberg Filtration Technologies. Ovie enjoys spending time with his wife Anita, playing golf, traveling, time with family and giving back to the community.

NBRPA membership is comprised of a diverse group of former professional basketball players of the NBA, ABA, WNBA, and Harlem Globetrotters.

Each month, we'll spotlight one NBRPA member from each league to recognize their career on the court as well as the impact they are now having in their communities.

Mo Evans

NBA

Mo Evans has a unique blend of sports and business experience, relationships, and acumen. During his 11-year professional basketball tenure, his teams made the NBA playoffs 7 times, during his FIBA tenure, he won a FIBA Championship, earned MVP, and was a two-time All-Star. In addition, Mo often represented his teams and organizations in the community with outreach to both youth and corporate initiatives. From 2010 to 2013, Mr. Evans served as Executive Vice President for the National Basketball Players Association and was influential in the 2011 NBA collective bargaining agreement negotiations.

Over the past 15 years, Mr. Evans has been active as an investor and an advisor for several companies, sports funds, and charitable organizations. He is Founder and President of The Molo Agency, a global talent agency that provides branding and management services to professional athletes and corporations focused on sports business services. Mr. Evans received a B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin. His Board Affiliations include NBRPA Houston, IMAC Regeneration, The Players Impact, Basketball Club International, and Talent Concierge Artist Agency.

Willie Davis

ABA

Willie has long been a part of the NBRPA, representing the Dallas Chapter as a leadership member and President of that Chapter.  He has always represented in a very positive manner with positive contributions.

Willie is an outstanding community leader in the City of Dallas & the State of Texas through his many activities on local and national boards. He is also an outstanding Black Art Collector & Educator. His entire family is involved in education.

Sylvia Crawley

WNBA

Sylvia was was born and raised in Steubenville, Ohio.  She attended Steubenville “Big Red” High school, where she played Volleyball, Basketball, Track.  She earned a full scholarship to play basketball at the University of North Carolina where she led the Tar Heels, as a Captain, to a National Championship her senior year.  She graduated with a double major of Communications, and Radio & TV Motion Pictures.

Sylvia signed her first professional contract to play abroad in France and would continue to play professionally in 16 different countries.  She is Silver and multiple Gold Medalist, she played USA Basketball for the Jones Cup, and in 1997 was named USA Basketball Player of the Year. Shortly after she was added to the USA National Team and was named an Alternate for the 1998 Olympic Team.

Sylvia played in the ABL American Basketball League, where she won the First ever women’s Slam Dunk Contest.  She won with a perfect score of 100, doing a Blindfolded Dunk.  In 1998, The ABL suspended operations and she quickly transitioned to the WNBA where she played for Portland Fire and the San Antonio Silver Stars.  In 2004, Sylvia retired from the San Antonio Silver Stars which relocated and is now known as the 2022 WNBA Champions Las Vegas Aces. 

Sylvia transitioned into coaching College Basketball, and quickly rose to a Head Coaching position at Ohio University, and Boston College where she was the 1st ever Black Coach at both institutions.  Sylvia has also played and coached at her Alma Mater UNC- Chapel Hill where her jersey hangs in the raptors.  She has even coached at the highest-level as an Assistant for WNBA Indian Fever. Currently, Coach Syl is a Global Coach where she trains male and female athletes around the world.    

Off the court, Sylvia is CEO of Crawley’s Creation LLC, a fashion and interior design company. She is also the co-founder of Monarch Magazine, sold nationwide at Barnes and Nobles. She has recently launched a Wellness Collection of Magnesium products offering organic relief for chronic pain, anxiety, and insomnia. Sylvia married her best friend; Pastor Brian Spann, they reside in Durham, North Carolina where they care for her parents.

Kevin Daley

Harlem Globetrotters

Kevin has accomplished a great deal in various areas of his life, including the following community contributions, career accomplishments, personal achievements, and academic success.

Most Recent:

• Prominent actor and basketball coordinator in "Sweetwater" motion picture, currently in theaters and various streaming platforms.

• Integral participant in propelling a global company to unicorn status with an evaluation exceeding $2B.

• Honoray Humane Letters Doctoral Degree from the University of Arizona Global Campus

Community:

Acknowledged by the U.S. House of Representatives and the State of California for significant contributions to community welfare.

• Partnered with the Department of Education on the Anti-Bullying campaign for the Harlem Globetrotters.

• Continued Anti-Bullying campaign with the acronym S.T.O.P Bullying after retiring. Recognized by the Day of Independence Committee of Panamanians in New York.

Career Accomplishments:

• Formerly a decade-long captain, influential player, and leader of the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters.

• Featured in over a dozen commercials, including a notable role as a double for Michael Jordan in a Gatorade advertisement, widely regarded as one of the top 10 commercials of all time.

• Distinguished speaker, recognized with accolades for exceptional public speaking.

• Featured in hundreds of news publications and T.V. shows domestically and internationally.

• Bilingual proficiency in Spanish and English, instrumental in facilitating success in corporate America and during tenure with the Harlem Globetrotters, being the only player to have ever conducted a Globetrotter game entirely in a language other than English.

Personal Accomplishments:

• Father of 2 girls and a devoted husband.

• Esteemed recipient of awards for literary contributions, notably for the acclaimed work, "I Never Stopped Smiling," an autobiography.

• Authored and published 1 plus one = 10: The Secret Leadership Formula Only Elite Leaders Know.

• Globetrotter in the truest sense, having journeyed to over 100 countries.

• Featured in hundreds of news features and television appearances, both domestically and internationally.

• He is a proud representative of his birth country, Panama, participating as a member of the Panamanian National team in several international tournaments.

Academic Accomplishments:

• Completed a B.A. in Sociology, achieved with distinction in 2010 from the institution formerly known as Ashford University, presently the University of Arizona Global Campus, while on the road playing in over 500 games in 25 different countries and 150 US cities, traveling over 50,000 miles.

• Delivered several commencement speeches in the U.S. and internationally.