February 2, 2023 – Hornets Sports & Entertainment (HSE) today announced that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC) will serve as the presenting partner of the organization’s Black History Month efforts for the fifth consecutive year. Together, the organizations will host a variety of activations throughout February to promote collective learning, honor Black culture and recognize the contributions of Black Americans – past, present and future – in alignment with the theme, “Honor. Amplify. Celebrate.”
After several years of virtual events, HSE and Blue Cross NC will host History in the Making: A Fireside Chat on Monday, February 6, for invited guests, including corporate leaders and community partners. Building on the “Honor. Amplify. Celebrate.” theme, the Fireside Chat will feature a series of immersive conversations with three changemakers in the Charlotte community who are creating pathways for the next generation – Clarence Boston, Owner of Hippin’ Hops Brewery; Dion and Davita Galloway, Co-Founders & Owners of DUPP&SWAT; and Elizabeth Trotman, President & CEO of One Catalyst Consulting. Hornets In-Arena Host Ohavia Phillips will moderate the discussion.
On Saturday, February 11, HSE and Blue Cross NC will host HBCU Night when the Hornets take on the Denver Nuggets. The day’s festivities will begin with an afternoon panel discussion of HBCU graduates discussing their paths to success with middle and high school students from around the Carolinas in a fun and engaging environment, followed by an HBCU fair for high school students. Prior to the game, which will include elements themed around HBCUs, current HBCU students and alumni will come together for an HBCU Alumni-Student Mixer.
The next week, on Tuesday, February 14, HSE and Blue Cross NC will host a separate youth-focused Black History Month event that will provide select students the opportunity to interact with Hornets players while participating in a creative project that celebrates Black culture.
“We look forward to celebrating Black History throughout the month of February with our friends at Blue Cross NC,” said Hornets President & Vice Chairman Fred Whitfield. “During this important time, we will recognize the remarkable contributions of Black Americans, while also shining light on the vibrancy of Black culture and the many Black voices within our community who are shaping history.”
"Throughout Black History Month, Blue Cross NC proudly celebrates the resilience, achievements and health of the Black community,” said Dr. Tunde Sotunde, president and CEO of Blue Cross NC. “Our collaboration with the Charlotte Hornets is part of our ongoing commitment to support programs and initiatives that allow all North Carolinians to live the healthiest lives possible."
Additional content, including more information about each of the organizations’ Black History Month efforts, will be available at HornetsBHM.com throughout the month of February. HSE will also honor Black History Month through the digital and social channels of the Hornets, the Greensboro Swarm, Hornets Venom GT and Spectrum Center.
To tip off the Black History Month partnership and honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, volunteers from HSE and Blue Cross NC spent January 10 at Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina, helping to inspect, sort and pack food items to be distributed to local shelters, emergency pantries and soup kitchens in 24 counties across the Carolinas.
About Hornets Sports & Entertainment
Hornets Sports & Entertainment owns the Charlotte Hornets, Greensboro Swarm and Hornets Venom GT, and operates Charlotte’s Spectrum Center. The Charlotte Hornets are a member of the NBA’s Southeast Division. Owned by NBA Legend Michael Jordan, the Hornets organization strives to deliver a relentless attack on the court, an unmatched experience in the stands and a positive impact throughout the community. The name of the city’s original NBA team from 1988-2002, the Hornets moniker returned to Charlotte in May 2014, uniting the rich history of NBA basketball in the Carolinas. The Greensboro Swarm are the NBA G League affiliate of the Charlotte Hornets and play at the Novant Health Fieldhouse at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex. Hornets Venom GT is the organization’s esports team affiliate that joined the NBA 2K League in 2020. Spectrum Center is the premier destination for sports and entertainment in the Carolinas, hosting over 150 sporting events, concerts and family shows annually. For more information, please visit hornets.com, gsoswarm.com, HornetsVenomGT.com or spectrumcentercharlotte.com.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (Blue Cross NC), the leading not-for-profit health plan in North Carolina, is committed to making health care more affordable, easier to navigate and accessible for all. Since 1933, the health insurer has created programs and initiatives to provide North Carolinians the opportunity to be healthy. Blue Cross NC serves its customers and communities of more than 4.2 million members, including approximately 1.1 million on behalf of other Blue Plans. Blue Cross NC is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Visit Blue Cross NC online at bluecrossnc.com. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.