Hines Ward is the only Asian to have had an extremely successful NFL career. Born to African American father and a Korean mother, Ward recently retired as the Pittsburgh Steelers’s all time leader in receptions, touchdown catches, and receiving yards. Despite his successful NFL career, Ward has never forgotten about his mixed heritage.
In 2006, after Hines Ward became the first Korean American to win the Superbowl MVP, he returned for the first time to his birthplace: Seoul, Korea. Using his new found celebrity status after winning the MVP, Ward tried to raise awareness for mixed-race kids living in Korea. He even donated $1 million to create the Hines Ward Helping Hands Foundation, which is dedicated towards helping end discrimination mixed-race kids receive in Korea.
Along with helping in Korea, Ward had played a helping hand in helping kids in Pittsburgh. His foundation aims to help underprivileged kids to receive help in academic and social areas that helps lead to their success in the future.
Considered to be the greatest golfer of our time, Mr. Woods has donated a tremendous amount of time and charity around the world. Known for bringing golf back into the spotlight right after his time at Stanford, Woods decided to thank the community which helped him succeed.
In 1996, Tiger and his father Earl created the Tiger Woods Foundation. Through grants and donations, this foundation creates community-based programs that improve the health, education, and welfare of all children in the US. With facilities all around the country, kids are learning that their minds and bodies must be in top shape to succeed (with some putt putt here and there).
Through an incredible $50 million donation by Tiger, the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, CA provides college programs for undeserved youth. The TWLC opened in 2006 and features several classrooms, extensive multimedia research and an outdoor golfing area.
To cap off the greatest single donation in the history of sports figures, Mr. Woods donated $10 million in 2007 to set up the Earl D. Woods Scholarship fund.
With a nickname like “The Las Vegas Kid,” you can see that Andre Agassi acted out a bit on and off the court in his earlier days. Becoming one of the most successful tennis players in its history, Agassi matured to help those children who have not seen their ability yet. Described by the BBC as “the biggest worldwide star in the sport’s history,” Agassi used this #1 ranked career to give back to his city.
In 2001, Agassi opened the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy. This tuition free charter school for at-risk children has a 100% graduation rate and expects a 100% college acceptance rate every year. Also, he created the Andre Agassi Charitable Foundation, which has raised over $60 million to help at-risk kids in his city.
The foundation has raised money to build schools, hospitals, and in 2001, the Andre Agassi Cottage for Medically Fragile Children. Gold medals, #1 rankings, and being one of four players to achieve the career grand slam meant nothing to Agassi unless he could use his image to help the future.