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In July, L’ATTITUDE hosted its first event during the NBA Summer League, honoring Latino leaders in the NBA. The day opened with a NAHREP Northwest Regional event where representatives from our chapters in the Northwest Region discussed the market and shared best practices. Later that afternoon, L’ATTITUDE honored Gersson Rosas, James Borrego, Earl Watson, and Alvaro Martin for their role in breaking barriers for Latinos in the NBA. L’ATTITUDE intends to amplify its focus on sports because of its enormous influence on our culture and the youth in America. Beyond recognizing leaders, L’ATTITUDE will produce studies and data that illustrate the role of Latinos in terms of audience and revenue growth for professional sports.
L’ATTITUDE has always done more than host meaningful conversations and produce data. In 2022, it used its platform to raise $100M to invest in Latino-led start-ups. With sports, L’ATTITUDE is committed to playing a large role in building a talent pipeline of young Latino players, coaches, and executives. L’ATTITUDE 2023 in Miami will host the second annual L’ATTITUDE Basketball Classic featuring the top Latino high school players in the US and from around the world. This year’s classic will feature the NBA Academy from Mexico City, Columbus High School in Miami, the consensus number one team in the nation, The Academy of Central Florida, featuring several members of the FIBA U18 Puerto Rican Men National Team, and Veritas Academy from Los Angeles, a Nike Elite School. Scouts from top colleges and each NBA franchise are expected to attend.
I have written about Veritas Academy in the past. The LA-based program is the brainchild of George Zedan, a highly successful high school and AAU basketball coach who believed there was a goldmine of untapped basketball talent in Latin America and the US. He wasn’t wrong. In five years, Veritas Academy has placed 100% of its graduates in colleges where they have continued their education and basketball careers. Sol Trujillo, Armando Tam, and I are hosting a fundraising gala and silent auction for Veritas Academy on August 19th in Los Angeles. The auction is amazing and several NBA players are expected to attend. Veritas is the type of program that the Latino community should support. George was able to meet executives from Nike at the L’ATTITUDE event in 2022, and that introduction was parlayed into a formal partnership with Nike. Shortly after, Veritas was invited to join the National Interscholastic Basketball Conference (NIBC) where they will square off against the top high school programs in the country, with most of their games televised on ESPN. Advocacy and creating awareness are important, but providing young student-athletes with the opportunity to refine their skills, complete their education, and compete against the best basketball talent in the world is changing lives. It’s something that NAHREP and L’ATTITUDE take very seriously. If you want to support Veritas Academy or participate in the gala and/or silent auction, please use this link.
L’ATTITUDE Sports is taking off!