Officially retiring from the NBA at the start of the season, Ray Allen is spending his retirement golfing, running for miles on end and managing his healthy fast-food restaurant in Miami called Grown. But thanks to President Obama, Allen is about to get a little more busy.
On Thursday, The White House announced the President has appointed Allen to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council, which was "established by Congress in 1980 to lead the nation in commemorating the Holocaust and to raise private funds for and build the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum." And while this appointment may have you scratching your head in wonderment, it is fitting.
Allen is a longtime supporter of the Holocaust Memorial Museum and has brought teammates and friends to the museum on frequent visits.
The Museum interviewed Allen about his visits in 2010:
My first visit to the Holocaust Museum, I had just gotten to the NBA. And I heard about it. I've always been, you know, a guy that's gone to museums. My coach in college was very much into taking us places and teaching us things while we traveled throughout the course of the season. And so, I just picked up that. When I traveled, I always went to places, cities. I'd try to figure out what different cities had to offer. And I just remember the first time I went there, it being so profound. And it's a lesson for everybody. That's something that stayed true to me. And I've been four or five times. And every time I go, I see something different. And when I come back, I always take somebody different.
I brought a friend of mine and he was an older black gentleman. And he, you know, he walked through and he had so many questions, and he couldn't believe that some of the things that he saw had taken place. And after we got done, we walked out and the first thing he questioned was, "What about slavery?" He was an older gentleman but, you know, it kind of made him angry, because he wanted to see something like that about the plight of the black people in America, about slavery. And I told him...I said, "This is about slavery." This is about people being enslaved and people being annihilated. And this is a lesson, so slavery doesn't happen anymore, so people don't believe that they're better than the next person. This is all about slavery. It just so happens to be spoken through the words of the Jewish people in the Holocaust, people who the Nazis tried to annihilate.
Allen was always viewed as a smart and thoughtful players, so based on his profound view on the Museum, his appointment is one he won't take lightly.