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Friday, June 14, 2024

Phil Knight Invests $400 Million in Portland’s Black Community

  • The 1803 Fund will support education services, art, and other projects in Portland’s Albina neighborhood.
  • The Nike co-founder announced the fund Monday at Nike’s headquarters in Beaverton.
Phil Knight
Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Nike co-founder Phil Knight had pledged $400 million to support Portland’s Black community through his newly launched 1803 Fund.

Knight and his wife Penny announced the investment Monday at Nike Headquarters in Beaverton, Ore. The 1803 Fund’s initial focus will include investments toward education services, art programs, and other business projects in Portland’s Albina neighborhood.

The 1803 Fund’s CEO is Rukaiyah Adams, who also serves as chair of the board of directors of Oregon Public Broadcasting. Also joining the 1803 Fund’s board of directors is Tony Hopson, CEO of Black youth advocacy nonprofit Self-Enhancement Inc, Ron Herndon, CEO of Albina Head Start, and Larry Miller, former Portland Trail Blazers executive, and chair of Nike’s Michael Jordan brand.

Knight’s other business pursuits include his Division Street NIL collective, formed in 2021 to assist the University of Oregon student-athletes monetize their NIL. Knight also teamed with Los Angeles Dodgers co-owner Alan Smolinisky to offer more than $2 billion last June to buy the Trail Blazers, but its current owner Jody Allen said the NBA team was not for sale. 

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