Former Auburn star and Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley can add a new feat to his resume: being the first to donate $1 million to Miles College, a historically black institution in Fairfield, Alabama.
Barkley told interim president Bobbie Knight about the donation on Wednesday, news outlets reported.
“I’ve gotten to know Bobbie over the last year and it was something I really wanted to do,” Barkley said. “To have a female president is a big deal. I want to help Bobbie be as successful as she can be.”
Knight was named interim president last July and is the first woman to lead the HBCU.
Knight said Barkley’s contribution is the largest individual gift the college has received in its 122-year history. It will launch a comprehensive campaign to raise $100 million for the institution, Knight said.
“It’s great that he thinks enough of us to donate a million dollars,” Knight said. “What Barkley has done helps lay the foundation for the campaign.”
“I just think what it’s costing these kids to go to college today is a travesty in this country, and I know historically black colleges are struggling. I wanted to do something to help them and I’m going to continue to help them.”
This is the fourth time Barkley has donated to an HBCU. He has previously pledged $1 million to Alabama A&M, Clark Atlanta University and Morehouse College in Atlanta.