Becoming a Man (BAM) students and the Chicago Police Department (CPD) came together for a 2nd annual basketball tournament. Held, August 27th, the event was hosted by the Chicago Bulls at the Advocate Center. BAM circles took place during the day to provide safe spaces for tough conversations about relations between law enforcement and young, African-American males in Chicago’s communities.
The day included 34 BAM youth from Orr and Douglass High Schools, 22 Chicago Police Officers, Bulls and YG staff, and many special guests. The tournament emphasized fun, while also offering a platform for youth voice. “Sometimes you feel scared,” said Derrick, a sophomore from Orr High School. “You know, with all the shooting and stuff…There’s violence. In BAM we talk about what we think and about our core values like integrity. With that, things would be different.”
Participants also included U.S. Attorney of Northern Illinois Zachary T. Fardon; CPD Chief of Patrol Fred Waller & Deputy Chief of Community Police Eric Washington; Bulls players Rajon Rondo, Denzel Valentine and Jerian Grant; Bulls legends Scottie Pippen, Toni Kukoc, Bob Love and Mickey Johnson; Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, Bulls President & COO Michael Reinsdorf, Chicago Bulls Charities President Nancy Reinsdorf and Vice President Leslie Forman.