Sky Hook: Kareem is the Closer

February 14, 2023

We are thrilled to announce six-time NBA champion and the NBA’s only six-time MVP, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, joined by Former U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, as the ASU+GSV closing keynote during Wednesday night's program at the Shell!

An athlete, social justice champion, New York Times best-selling author & award-winning columnist, filmmaker, and ambassador of education, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar now serves as the chairman of his Skyhook Foundation, whose mission is to “Give Kids a Shot That Can’t be Blocked” by bringing educational STEM opportunities to under-served communities through innovative outdoor environmental


A global icon that changed the game of professional basketball. He is a two-time Emmy nominated narrator and his award-winning HBO Sports documentary, Kareem: Minority of One, is one of HBO’s most-watched and highest-rated sports documentary of all time. He and his business partner, Deborah Morales are executive producers on The History Channels award winning series - Black Patriots. Abdul-Jabbar is a 8x Columnist of the Year and his bi-weekly Substack column offers his personal perspectives on policitcal and cultural issues facing America today.

He is the current recipient of Harvard University’s W.E.B. DuBouis Medal of Courage. During her time serving in the Obama Administration, former Secretary of State, Hillary Rodman Clinton bestowed upon him the prestigious title of U.S. Cultural Ambassador.  Before leaving office, President Barack Obama awarded Abdul-Jabbar The Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

Kareem will be joined on Stage X by Arne Duncan who served as U.S. Secretary of Education from January 2009 through December 2015 as part of the Obama Administration. Prior to joining the Obama Administration, Duncan served as chief executive officer of Chicago Public Schools. From 2001 to 2008, Duncan won praise for uniting the city’s stakeholders behind an education agenda that included opening 100 new schools; expanding after-school, summer learning, early childhood, and college access programs; dramatically boosting the caliber of teachers; and building public-private partnerships around a variety of education initiatives. He currently leads Chicago CRED, a nonprofit trying to achieve a transformative reduction in gun violence in Chicago. Through partnerships with local business leaders, community organizers, and nonprofit groups, Duncan aims to provide outreach, therapeutic, education, and employment opportunities for the young men most likely to be engaged in gun violence. He is also the managing partner at Emerson Collective, an organization dedicated to removing barriers so people can live to their full potential. Secretary Duncan graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1987, majoring in sociology. At Harvard he served as co-captain of the basketball team and was named a first team Academic All-American.

Don't miss the ASU+GSV closing keynote with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Arne Duncan, and Deborah Morales, Wednesday at the San Diego Shell.

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