NBA Star Caron Butler Talks Business, Basketball and Broadcasting [VIDEO]

Caron Butler

Caron Butler, the NBA star who’s winding down his professional playing days, is a man of many talents—and many business interests.

Caron Butler

Butler’s most recent NBA appearances have come from the sidelines, as he’s doing more play-by-play than playing. He’s had numerous guest commentating spots during this year’s NBA playoffs. And he recently signed with an agency to represent him for his broadcasting work.

One of our inaugural BE Modern Man 100 Men of Distinction, Butler is also a veteran when it comes to business. He made headlines in 2010 for buying six Burger King restaurant franchises. Not only was it a smart wealth-building move, but it marked coming full circle from his days mopping floors and making fries there as a teen.

These days he’s keeping himself busy with a portfolio of real estate investments. And even though he sold his equity stake in the Burger King franchises, he’s an investor in Fala Bar, a vegan fast food restaurant franchise, with two locations in Los Angeles.

Butler recently stopped by our office and spoke to Black Enterprise about making the career transition from professional athlete to sportscaster and businessman:

Black Enterprise Editor Honored With ‘Heroine of Excellence’ Award

BLACK ENTERPRISE Digital Editor Selena Hill was honored as one of several Heroines of Excellence, at the eighth annual Beauty and the Beat award event, last week in New York City.


(Image: Udo Salters Photography)


Hill was awarded as an up-and-coming millennial making an impact through her work in the media industry.

The event was founded by DJ Jon Quick—a famous, New York-based DJ. In a 2012 interview with BLACK ENTERPRISE, Quick revealed his educational background in social work, and how his career in music has not dissuaded his interest in social and political causes:


“I was approached in late January 2012, to be a partner in a fundraising event by Obama Fundraising Committee member, Brian Benjamin, and his NYC based nonprofit, Young Professionals for Change. Seeing how I had just did a successful fundraiser the year before, called ‘Deejays for Japan,’ I decided to call the event ‘Deejays for Obama.’

Because everyone cannot afford to attend those amazing, $5,000-a-plate fundraisers, I wanted to do an event that the average working class professional could come to, and just donate whatever they could to the Obama victory fund. Some of the great DJs we’ve had volunteer their skills were D-Nice, Spinna, Pete Rock, and Goldfinger, to name a few.

Five events later, we have raised over $12,000 for Obama’s campaign. I should add that some Obama campaign staffers took notice, and recently coined their own official initiative ‘DJs for Obama.’”


Per its website, Beauty and the Beat is a fundraising event, with two purposes:

  1. To honor women of color who, through hard work, have become undeniable shooting stars in their respective industries.
  2. To raise money for worthy charities and causes.

This year’s event raised money for The Hip Hop Loves Foundation and The Urban Resource Institute.


(Image: Udo Salters Photography)


Past honorees include Black Girls Rock! Founder and CEO Beverly Bond; Al Jazeera News Anchor Richelle Carey; Maya Haile; and TV/radio medical expert Dr. Yael Varnado, also known as “Dr. V.”

“I am extremely humbled to accept one of the Beauty and the Beat: Heroine of Excellence awards, and I give all glory to God. To be recognized among such a prestigious and well-accomplished group of women is an honor. I commend DJ Jon Quick for creating this platform, which spotlights and celebrates women of color,” said Hill.


Gold Medalist Simone Manuel Offers Advice on Swimming and Life

Simone Manuel

Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist Simone Manuel is only 20-years-old. However, her history-making win at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games—where she became the first African American swimmer to win an individual Olympic Gold medal—has allowed her to become a voice of expertise when it comes to matters of swimming and, to some extent, life.


Simone Manuel, the first African American swimmer to win an individual Olympic gold medal. (Photo courtesy of USA Swimming Foundation)


The Stanford University student is currently part of the USA Swimming Foundation’s “Make a Splash” initiative that, since 2007, has helped five million U.S. children learn to swim with free or low-cost swim lessons. The USA Swimming Foundation’s “Make a Splash” initiative partners with communities, learn-to-swim providers, and other national organizations to provide swimming lessons to children and families. Their goal is to reach one million children annually.

BLACK ENTERPRISE caught up with Manuel in a recent phone interview, where she discussed why she felt it necessary to participate in this initiative, as well as the importance of young people learning how to swim, aside from saving one’s life.


Insight From Simone Manuel


BLACK ENTERPRISE: Though an excellent skill to acquire, learning to swim can be a privilege for some, depending on where they live and what resources are available. However, you were able to learn how to swim by the time you turned age four. What can you say to parents and kids or teenagers about why swimming is a vital skill worth learning, especially at a young age?

Simone Manuel: I come from a very athletic family; my parents wanted their daughters to be engaged in sports.  It’s so vital to learn this sport; learning how to swim can save your life, and reduce the likelihood of you drowning by 88%. Swimming also allows kids to develop their social and communication skills and [teaches the value of] work hard and setting goals. I’ve learned a lot about myself and others [as a competitive swimmer]. Just being able to learn can make you a better swimmer, professional, or student.


BE: For even the most successful entrepreneur or professional, the potential for setbacks or failure will always be there. What advice do you have for readers on how to get back up to overcome challenges when things don’t go as planned?

SM: Remember the goal you had in the first place. You don’t always reach it the first time around, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up. I’m a firm believer in believing in the process; failure is part of success—if you don’t fail, you won’t [ever] know what success[truly] is.


Simone Manuel. (Photo courtesy of USA Swimming Foundation)


BE: What keeps you grounded and focused?

SM: I feel like I was born to do the sport of swimming. However, when I was growing up, my parents would stress how swimming wasn’t all that defined me; it wasn’t the only thing that made me, me. My friends and school have helped to keep me grounded. I have other responsibilities, too. There are other components of my life that allow me to do more than just sit back and think about what I’ve done—I also think about what’s next.


BE: What’s the best advice you’ve received that you’d like to share with those in your age group?

SM: Always believe in your dreams, and protect that. Don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do or be something, because you can if you are willing to work hard and fight for what you want.



For more information about Make a Splash or to find swimming lessons near you,click here.