On Tuesday, June 10, the NBA announced the newly-formed Jr. NBA Canadian Leadership Council, which includes NC's associate director of Athletics and Recreation, Michele O'Keefe, alongside 16 others. Among them are Hall of Famer Steve Nash, Raptors forward Pascal Siakam, and Canadian national Team members Cory Joseph and Kia Nurse.
O'Keefe, who is also a FIBA central board member, will be part of this initiative, designed to provide direction to help grow youth basketball in Canada, ensuring that youth have even more access to age-appropriate instruction and the core values of teamwork, respect, sportsmanship and leadership.
"With the incredible spotlight on the Toronto Raptors and our national squads, there will no doubt be a great surge of children picking up a basketball," said O'Keefe. "The work done at the national level will trickle down to communities like Niagara. Increasing capacity for sport delivery is critical and we've already started having great conversations in the Peninsula."
Over 300 participating community organizations across Canada will implement a basketball development curriculum jointly developed by Canada Basketball and the NBA that reflects the Long-Term Athlete Development Framework and Canadian style of play.
The news was shared by Forbes, among other news agencies.
-Story by Jessican Torok, Communications Specialist, Niagara College