Wanda Durant Addresses Bowie State Grads During 2024 Commencement

Wanda Durant, the inspirational matriarch behind NBA icon Kevin Durant, delivered a rousing commencement address on Friday, May 24, before the Bowie State University Class of 2024.

Raised in the neighboring town of Capitol Heights, which she described as the “drug capital of the world” during her time, Mama Durant drew from her own life experiences as she challenged the graduates to view their success as a pathway for those following in their footsteps. “When I stand here and look at you graduates, I see myself, I see my sons,” she told BSU graduates at the spring commencement ceremony. Durant shared her journey of navigating fears and uncertainties and raising her two sons on her own. “I had to do what you did and continue to strive on,” she said, encouraging the graduates to have a plan attached to their dreams.

In her role as president of the Durant Family Foundation (DFF), Mama Durant has dedicated herself to uplifting underprivileged youth through educational, athletic, and social initiatives. The DFF website proudly showcases the foundation’s far-reaching impact, supporting young people nationwide and beyond since 2013.

Bowie State University’s commencement program hailed Durant as “a dynamic leader, a beacon of inspiration, an advocate and a force for change who uses her platform to empower champions.” It lauded her for disseminating messages of hope, resilience, and the power of belief throughout corporations, non-profit organizations, college campuses, and youth audiences.”

Durant’s remarkable odyssey and indomitable spirit are captured in “The Real MVP: The Wanda Durant Story,” a film produced by Queen Latifah that showcases her relentless efforts and profound influence as a genuine MVP.

Beyond co-founding and leading OUR Mothers Inc., an NBA mothers’ collective, Durant has graced prestigious platforms with her keynote addresses, including J.P. Morgan Chase, the Ford Foundation, Thomson Reuters, Brown Brother Harriman, and the Flamboyan Foundation. Her voice has also resonated at the White House United States of Women Summit and the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Annual Legislative Conference.

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