LeBron James Announces Barack Obama Will Speak at 'Graduate Together' Event

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMay 5, 2020

WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 28: U.S. President Barack Obama (R) stands with Miami Heat players, including Dwyane Wade (L), LeBron James (2nd-L), Mario Chalmers (2R) during an event to honor the NBA champion Miami Heat in the East Room at the White House on January 28, 2013 in Washington, DC. President Barack Obama congratulated the 2012 NBA champions for claiming their third NBA Championship by beating the Boston Celtics.  (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James announced Tuesday that former President Barack Obama will take part in the Graduate Together virtual event May 16 to honor students whose in-person graduation ceremonies have been canceled by the coronavirus pandemic.

LeBron James @KingJames

Class of 2020, I told you guys we are working on something special and we have an incredible update…THE GOAT @BarackObama!!! You all worked so hard the past four years and deserve the best commencement we can bring to you and your family. 🙏🏾 May 16🔥🔥🔥 @GradTogether https://t.co/kQeX6sK9Ml

Obama confirmed his participation in the show along with two other commencement addresses:

Barack Obama @BarackObama

I’ve always loved joining commencements––the culmination of years of hard work and sacrifice. Even if we can’t get together in person this year, Michelle and I are excited to celebrate the nationwide Class of 2020 and recognize this milestone with you and your loved ones. https://t.co/ngR2ykx3A2

Leah Asmelash of CNN reported the Graduate Together broadcast will air across all four major networks—ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC—along with other channels and social media platforms at 8 p.m. ET on May 16.

Malala Yousafzai, the Jonas Brothers, Yara Shahidi, H.E.R., Bad Bunny, Pharrell Williams, Lena Waithe and Megan Rapinoe were among the previously confirmed celebrity participants, per CNN.

James said:

"We learned early on in our work with students and families in Akron that education is so much more than academics. It's about a shared experience, a journey we're all on together -- students, parents, educators, community members, and everyone around them. With that not being possible right now, we've been working to find ways to help families get through this really difficult time."

The three-time NBA champion and four-time league MVP will host the event.