Former NBA All Star and WSU basketball player James Donaldson will present a speech 3 p.m. tomorrow in the CUB Junior Ballroom about leadership, success and life's challenges.
Donaldson graduated in 1979 from WSU and went on to play for NBA teams such as the Seattle Supersonics, New York Knicks and even toured with the Harlem Globetrotters, a WSU press release said.
Recently, Donaldson published a book, "Standing Above the Crowd," which focuses on success, his endeavors and life.
Milton Lang, senior associate vice president for Student Affairs said he first had the pleasure of meeting Donaldson eight years ago at a diversity fundraising outreach.
Lang said he later invited Donaldson to a Future Cougars of Color luncheon as a keynote speaker. Donaldson did such a phenomenal job that Lang wanted to bring him back to WSU.
"James possesses many great assets; the ability to to advance his business, the willingness to give back to the community," Lang said. "To be associated with someone with such remarkable skills is a great honor."
It important to achieve higher education and give back to the community, Lang said, two leadership leadership qualities James portrays.
The presentation will give students the chance to learn about developing interpersonal and leadership skills, how to maximize your experience at WSU and how to navigate corporate America, Lang said. Donaldson's presentation will provide a better understanding to students on how to become great leaders and how to put these skills into action after life at WSU, Lang added.
ASWSU and Student Affairs and Enrollment partnered up to help bring Donaldson to WSU, Lang said.
"My philosophy is, 'we can do more together than we can apart,'" he said.
ASWSU President Riley Myklebust said bringing Donaldson will be an important moment for WSU students.
"It will be an opportunity to learn from both sides of a successful entrepreneur and a sports fanatic. It will be an entertaining session," Myklebust said.
Bob Minnix, senior associate director of Athletics, said Donaldson achieved success the old-fashioned way by putting his academic priorities first and then focusing on sports.
Minnix said Donaldson strived for nothing less than excellence and his message will not only address the regular student body, but also the perspective of a student athlete's.
Other accomplishments Donaldson has achieved include establishing the Donaldson Clinic, a physical therapy business in Seattle and placing fourth last year in a bid for mayor of Seattle.