For their efforts using sport to make a positive impact on society, San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns, New York Liberty center Tina Charles, Cincinnati Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap and Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul are the finalists for the Sports Humanitarian of the Year Award, ESPN announced Thursday.
The winner of the award will be announced July 12 in Los Angeles, during a ceremony hosted by Laila Ali and featuring musical guest Andra Day. All proceeds benefit the Stuart Scott Memorial Cancer Research Fund at The V Foundation.
ESPN will broadcast the show at 7 p.m. ET on July 15.
Burns, inspired by his grandfather’s service in World War II, has worked with United Heroes League and Folds of Honor to help veterans, active duty military members and families of injured and deceased military personnel.
For the second straight season, Charles has donated half her WNBA salary to help place automated external defibrillators in schools and recreation centers worldwide as part of her Hopey’s Heart Foundation.
Dunlap created the Dunlap Scholars Program, which provides ACT and SAT prep courses, college readiness courses, mentoring and job interview training to underprivileged student-athletes in Cincinnati.
Paul founded the Chris Paul Family Foundation to level the playing field in education, sports and community, funded two full scholarships to Wake Forest and opened three technology labs in communities across the country.
The winner will receive a $100,000 grant from ESPN to their qualified charity, while the other finalists will get $25,000 grants. In all, ESPN will distribute more than $1 million to community initiatives.
In addition, the Sports Humanitarian Team honor will be presented to the team that best demonstrates how teamwork can create a measurable impact on a community or cause. The finalists in this category are the Detroit Pistons (Flint water crisis), LA Galaxy (“20 for Twenty” initiative), San Francisco 49ers (STEM Education Program) and San Francisco Giants (Junior Giants program).
Other honors that will be given out are the League Humanitarian Award and recognition for Corporate Community Impact.