"Make your first million. Make a charity. Give it your name and go to a couple of events every year. It's good for your #brand."
The above sentiments seem to have become prerequisites for professional athletes in the 21st century, where having your own charitable organization is more or less a compulsory obligation recommended by sports agents everywhere.
How much is actually put into said foundation, well, is up to the athlete.
You don't have to be Mother Teresa, but if you're an athlete (or human being) looking to go above and beyond in the name of public service, I'd suggest observing Warrick Dunn, who continues to set the golden standard for philanthropy long after retiring from the NFL.
Dunn's charity, Warrick Dunn Charities, began helping single-parent families find affordable housing in 1997. As the former NFL running back tweeted earlier this October, they've just given away their 145th home to a family in need:
Here are some other snapshots of Dunn's charity at work. He's been busy:
That's strong work. It's also incredible that all of this has mostly flown under the radar for Dunn.
He started his philanthropic work with Homes for the Holidays—a service aimed at finding housing for struggling single-parent families in time for Christmas. Dunn dedicates all of his work to his late mother, Betty Smothers, a Baton Rouge, Louisiana, police officer who was slain in a botched armed robbery in 1993.
So yeah: Warrick Dunn is, by all accounts, a rock-solid dude who just happened to be incredibly hard to tackle.
Dan is on Twitter. Take him back to the days of Warrick Dunn jukes and Surge at the soda fountain.