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Michael Jordan donates $5m to national black history museum

FEELING GENEROUS: Basketball legend Michael Jordan

BASKETBALL LEGEND Michael Jordan has donated $5 million (£3.8m) to the new, soon to be opened National Museum of African American History and Culture.

The generous gift, the largest from a sports figure to the new Washington DC museum, pushes private donations to the museum to $278 million (£213m). Including government aid, the museum, which President Barack Obama will open next month on September 24, has raised more than $548 million ($421m).

“I am grateful for the opportunity to support this museum,” Jordan, 53, said in a statement. “I also am indebted to the historic contributions of community leaders and athletes such as Jesse Owens, whose talent, commitment and perseverance broke racial barriers and laid the groundwork for the successful careers of so many African Americans in athletics and beyond.”

The Chicago Bulls star also gave a jersey that he wore during the 1996 NBA finals to the museum’s permanent collection. In recognition of the gifts, the museum will name a section of its sports gallery the Michael Jordan Hall.

Museum founding director Lonnie G. Bunch III expressed gratitude for Jordan’s contribution. “His gift will enable our visitors to explore how sports were used to break barriers as a way to gain full participation in American society,” Bunch said in a statement.

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