UDC: “We Are Black History”: Charles “Choo” Smith, Jr.
UDC: “We Are Black History”
Charles “Choo” Smith, Jr.
UDC Hall of Famer and Former Harlem Globetrotter
Charles “Choo” Smith, Jr., graduated from the University of the District of Columbia in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. Smith came to UDC after his first year of college at Bowie State University, where he was recruited by the Firebirds men’s head basketball coach Will Jones. Choo immediately earned his spot as the starting point guard and the Firebirds went seven games over .500 for the first time in 10 years. For his exceptional basketball skills, Choo was voted team MVP and finished his college career as the school’s all-time leader in steals and assists. Subsequently, he won the Pigskin Classic Award as the “Best Player” in the region and received the Reslyn W. Henry Memorial Award.
Choo soon caught the eye of a representative from the world-renowned Original Harlem Globetrotters and signed a contract to join the team. He moved to the top of the pyramid by becoming a high-profile member of the team until 2001, when he sustained what some thought would be a career ending back injury. He soon recovered and began playing for the Harlem Wizards from 2001-2002 and then overseas in the Euro League with the Vienna Basket Hounds from 2002-2003. Choo has played in all 50 states and in 26 countries. He has been recognized as one of the greatest dribblers in the world. In 2015, Charles “Choo” Smith was inducted into the Athletics Hall of Fame at the University of the District of Columbia.
Choo is the founder and CEO of the Choo Smith Youth Empowerment (CSYE), a non-profit foundation that is dedicated to developing and implementing programs that facilitate positive growth in the lives of youth, their families and the broader community. CSYE enhances youth by preparing them to be productive citizens who impact change in their communities.
The positive community impact of CSYE has resulted in Smith being featured on local and national television and radio networks. Choo has been interviewed by Fox News, NBC, ABC, Cornerstone Television, and Radio One’s “Tom Joyner Morning Show.” He has also appeared on the FOX television reality show, “Good Fellas of Baltimore” and the new ABC Reality show “Ball Boys.” As a humanitarian, Charles “Choo” Smith continues to touch the lives of youth throughout Maryland and around the world.
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