Sacramento Kings owner and chairman Vivek Ranadivé was presented with the Titan Award in Sports by Rep. Doris O. Matsui (D-Calif.), “for his success in changing the rules of the game in business and sports and exemplifying how Indian- Americans can write their own American story.” Ranadivé received the award last month at The Party, an annual event hosted by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.
According to a press release issued by the Kings, The Party was created to raise awareness about the many contributions of Asian Pacific Americans and announce the launch of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Keystone Initiative to begin fundraising for the first permanent Asian Pacific American gallery within the Smithsonian. “The Smithsonian is one of the most iconic institutions in the country and to be recognized by them is both humbling and a tremendous honor that I could never have imagined,” Ranadivé said.
“Asian Americans and Indian-Americans have been and continue to be a key part of what makes this country great and it is only fitting that they are honored in the Smithsonian which is globally recognized as the curator of American history and culture.”
Born and raised in Mumbai, Ranadivé is the first Indian-American majority owner of an NBA team. Since he took over ownership of the Kings in 2013, he has helped to infuse Indian culture into the league by hosting an annual Bollywood Night at Golden 1 Center and streaming over 125 Kings games in India.
Throughout the season, the team also hosts several diversity celebrations including Black History Month, Lunar New Year and Serbian Heritage Night – featuring games played on the Kings Global Statement Court. Additionally, in October, the Kings will play the first-ever NBA India Games in Mumbai as part of the NBA’s global expansion efforts.