The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club will pay tribute to the outgoing 59th mayor of the City of Atlanta, Kasim Reed, and his work during the game at Philips Arena on Nov. 3 with a ceremonial jersey retirement. To celebrate the partnership the team has enjoyed with the leader throughout his two terms as the city’s chief executive, a custom authentic Hawks jersey will be presented to Reed and placed on permanent display in the arena. The in-game observance will mark the first time that a non-team member has received this type of symbolic recognition from the club. Hawks Vice Chair Grant Hill will offer remarks.
“We thought it very appropriate to give Mayor Reed one of our highest honors,” said Steve Koonin, CEO of the Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club and Philips Arena. “He has consistently advocated for our team’s work to entertain and unite the city of Atlanta through basketball, helping to make our great city an awesome place to live, work and play. The Hawks are excited to create this enduring symbol of our appreciation and respect for his partnership and all he has accomplished as mayor.”
Reed has been a staunch supporter of Atlanta’s NBA team, working closely with the organization on both community and business initiatives in the city. Those projects include several basketball court renovations in underserved neighborhoods and plans to revitalize the downtown entertainment district, along with the $192.5MM transformation of Philips Arena. The Hawks have expanded access to play for local residents by building or restoring four public courts at Centers of Hope in the city’s parks and recreation system, which Mayor Reed has championed during his tenure. The mayor also played a major role in the team’s decision to remain in downtown Atlanta through 2046 and fully reimagine Philips Arena as a contemporary live event venue with a new state-of-the-art conference center and various entertainment options.