CHARLOTTE, NC —An All-Star roster of influential voices representing the past, present and future of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, (CIAA®), the nation’s first African American athletic conference, can be seen and heard on a commemorative video released by the CIAA today as a precursor to the conference’s 75th Anniversary basketball tournament taking place February 25-29, 2020 in Charlotte, NC.
From Hall of Famers and current student-athletes to the conference Commissioner and CIAA’s broadcast voice who are among the featured interviewees, the video provides perspective on the important role the CIAA has played through the decades and how it transitioned from an event pulled together on a shoestring to its current iteration – drawing 150,000 fans, students and alumni each year to a five-day-long celebration of black culture and community.
“Our 75th Championship Tournament season is a momentous time for us all,” said CIAA Commissioner Jacqie McWilliams. “Major anniversaries like this one allow us to reflect on accomplishments and the impact we’ve made by opening doors and creating opportunities for our community. In Charlotte, as we enter our 15th consecutive year in the city, the tournament has accounted for more than $500 million in economic impact to the region, provided millions of dollars in sponsorships to support scholarships to our member institutions, enhance the student-athlete experience and impact community, fan and alumni through strategic civic engagement in and outside the competition venue. That is truly remarkable. This video tells our story and shares our legacy of leadership, community, and tradition.”
The 75th-anniversary video includes reflections on the milestone from past and present CIAA athletes, notable alumni, coaches and executives including: