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Florida Lottery Teams Up With Former NBA Star and FSU Legend Charlie Ward for Third Annual Father’s Day Basketball Clinic in Tallahassee


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (June 18, 2024) The Florida Lottery (Lottery) partnered with former Florida State University (FSU) standout and NBA veteran Charlie Ward for the third annual Father’s Day Leadership Basketball Clinic. The event, hosted by The Charlie and Tonja Ward Family Foundation, took place on Sunday, June 16, and offered a unique opportunity for fathers, male mentors, and their children to engage in a day of basketball, leadership, and community bonding. 


The clinic, held at Florida High, was designed to strengthen relationships through basketball drills and leadership sessions and provide a meaningful way to celebrate Father’s Day. Participants enjoyed a range of activities aimed at fostering teamwork, motivation, and educational growth.


"We believe in the power of education and mentorship, and events like this help pave the way for future leaders. It’s an honor to work alongside Charlie Ward and his foundation to create positive, lasting impacts in our community."

“The Florida Lottery is proud to support initiatives like the Father’s Day Leadership Basketball Clinic that foster community engagement and youth development. We believe in the power of education and mentorship, and events like this help pave the way for future leaders. It’s an honor to work alongside Charlie Ward and his foundation to create positive, lasting impacts in our community,” said John F. Davis, Secretary of the Florida Lottery


The Ward Family Foundation is dedicated to youth character development through sports, education, the arts, and wellness. Participants at the Father’s Day clinic rotated through various stations and received basketball instruction and insights from guest speakers on topics such as teamwork and education. This year’s clinic featured a new station on the application of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) to basketball, including lessons on physics and digital technology.


During the clinic, Florida Lottery representatives Randy Fox and Gina Blanton, both with the Partnerships & Engagements team, and Misty Bull, Tallahassee District Manager, provided information about scholarship opportunities through the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship Program, which the Lottery primarily funds. They also awarded two students with Bright Futures medallions. 


“We are grateful for the Florida Lottery’s support of our programs,” Ward said, “and we’re excited that attendees had the chance to learn about how the Bright Futures Scholarship Program can help them achieve their educational and career goals.” 


The clinic was open to youth ages 7 through 18 accompanied by their fathers or male mentors. The clinic was held from 1-3:30 p.m. In addition to skills training and motivational talks, the event featured exciting giveaways and the announcement of the winner of the Ward Family Foundation’s “Championship Breakfast” Student Logo Design Contest.



ABOUT THE CHARLIE AND TONJA WARD FAMILY FOUNDATION 

Charlie Ward, a two-sport athlete and 1993 Heisman Trophy winner, excelled as a quarterback and point guard at Florida State University. Drafted by the New York Knicks in 1994, Charlie enjoyed an 11-year NBA career. Along with his wife, Tonja, Charlie has a long history of supporting youth development through sports camps, church programs, and outreach events. The Charlie and Tonja Ward Family Foundation, established in 2015, continues this legacy, focusing on youth character development through sports, the arts, and disaster relief. For additional information, visit wardfoundation.org.


ABOUT THE FLORIDA LOTTERY 

The Florida Lottery has contributed over $46 billion to enhance education, sending more than 983,000 students to college through the Bright Futures Scholarship Program. With 99 percent of its revenue reinvested into Florida’s economy through prize payouts, retailer commissions, and educational transfers, the Florida Lottery has paid over $94.2 billion in prizes and made more than 4,000 people millionaires since 1988. For more information, visit floridalottery.com.

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