Clark Atlanta raising money for scholarship for alum fighting cancer

Clark Atlanta University and alumni are rallying to support one of their own with a scholarship named after a graduate who is battling cancer.

Friends and family of Tony Brown recently began a 10-day campaign to raise $100,000 for a basketball scholarship endowment at his alma mater. As of Friday, more than $50,000 was raised for the scholarship.

Brown, a 1989 graduate of the historically Black university, was diagnosed in April 2021 with Stage IV pancreatic cancer and is currently in hospice near his Atlanta home.

“As a husband and father of three, Tony knows the value sports and education has played in his life and his family’s,” the website promoting the fundraising effort says. “The Tony Brown Basketball Program Scholarship Endowment was created to make sure that no athlete has to choose between their sport and education.”

Brown worked at Delta Air Lines while in school and retired from the company in 2007. He became a basketball referee in 2002 and worked four NBA All-Star games in 2006, 2017, 2018 and 2021, according to a news release. On Wednesday, Clark Atlanta men’s basketball team visited Brown and signed a basketball jersey as a gift.

“Our entire family is grateful for the Clark Atlanta team coming to see Tony” his wife, Tina Taylor-Brown, said in a statement. “We had a chance to meet the young men who will benefit from this endowment scholarship for Clark Atlanta University’s basketball program. We want them to be able to focus on being student-athletes and not having to work a job. Academic excellence should be their job. We truly hope that Tony’s NBA and Delta family can help us achieve this goal.”