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Phil Knight SpeakerJust when you thought things couldn’t get better for Nike’s founder Phil Knight, he added another accolade to his successful business career. Knight was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame for his contribution to the game. The Hall recognized him as the driving force behind Nike’s huge financial support for the sport and its players. The Class of 2012 included Reggie Miller, Coach Don Nelson, Jamaal Wilkes, Chet Walker, Katrina McClain, Hank Nelson, Mel Daniels and the late Don Barksdale.

A native of Oregon, he is the co-founder and chairman of Nike, Inc., and previously served as the chief executive officer of Nike. By 2011, Knight’s stake in Nike gave him an estimated net worth of $14.4 billion, making him the 47th richest person in the world and the 19th richest American.

A graduate of the University of Oregon and Stanford Graduate School of Business, he has donated hundreds of millions of dollars to the schools. He gave the largest donation in history at the time to Stanford’s business school in 2006. A native Oregonian, he ran track under coach Bill Bowerman at the University of Oregon, with whom he would co-found Nike.

In 2000, Knight was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame for his Special Contribution to Sports in Oregon. He is believed to have contributed approximately $230 million to the University of Oregon, the majority of which was for athletics. On August 18, 2007, Knight announced that he and his wife, Penny, would be donating an additional $100 million to the University of Oregon Athletics Legacy Fund. This donation is reportedly the largest in the University’s history.

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Watch a Video of Phil Knight Speaking with the Stanford Dean of Business:




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