NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Former Yale men's basketball star Earl "Butch" Graves '84 was one of six recipients of the 2009 NCAA Silver Anniversary Award last Thursday night at the NCAA Honors and Delegates Celebration in Washington, D.C. The Silver Anniversary Award has been presented annually since 1973 to former student-athletes whose collegiate careers ended 25 years ago and who have gone on to excel in their chosen professions.
Graves, the captain of the 1983-84 Bulldogs, is Yale's all-time leading scorer with 2,090 career points and is one of only four players in Ivy League history to score at least 2,000 points. He was named first team All-Ivy in both 1983 and 1984 and led the league in scoring in Ivy games three times (1982-84). As a senior in 1983-84, he scored 609 points, the second most in a single season in school history. He also is Yale's career leader in field goals made (816) and field goals attempted (1,635). His 20.3 ppg. career scoring average is tied for the third best in Yale history. He was selected in the third round of the 1984 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers and enjoyed a brief professional career with the Milwaukee Bucks and Cleveland Cavaliers.
Graves, who received a bachelor's degree in economics from Yale, is the president & CEO of Earl G. Graves Publishing Co., publisher of Black Enterprise magazine. He is responsible for the strategic positioning and overall profitability of the corporation.
He joined Black Enterprise in 1988 after earning his M.B.A. from Harvard University. His first position with the company was vice president of advertising and marketing. In 1991, he was promoted to senior vice president of advertising and marketing, and in 1995, he was named executive vice president and chief operating officer. He was appointed president and chief operating officer in 1998, and named president and CEO on January 5, 2006.
Under his guidance, the magazine has grown rapidly, realizing more than 10 consecutive years of advertising revenue growth. He has helped establish the strong niche marketing position of Black Enterprise among national business publications and supported award-winning marketing programs that boosted circulation growth. Since 1997, the magazine has been a five-time recipient of the FOLIO: Editorial Excellence Award in the category of business/finance consumer magazines. Black Enterprise has a guaranteed circulation of more than 500,000, and a readership of more than 3.9 million.
Graves has played a leading role in developing the magazine's successful professional networking events--the Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference, the Golf & Tennis Challenge, the Women of Power Summit, and the financial empowerment series'--and was instrumental in establishing the Black Enterprise/Greenwich Street Growth Partners, a $91 million private equity investment fund for which he is also a managing partner.
Inducted into the American Advertising Federation (AAF) Hall of Achievement in November 2002, Graves was also awarded the AAF Jack Averett Volunteer Spirit Award and the Whitney M. Young Jr. Service Award from the Boy Scouts of America in 2006. He was included in The Network Journal's "40 under 40" listing in 1998.
Graves is a powerful advocate of doing business with minority media and advertising agencies and is currently chairman of the Madison Avenue Initiative. He occasionally lends his support to AAIA, an AAF affiliate. Butch serves on the board of advisors of Earl G. Graves Ltd. and Channel Thirteen/WNET's Educational Broadcasting Corp. He holds positions on the corporate boards of several other companies, including AutoZone, the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund, the Pepsi African American Advisory Board, and the Magazine Publishers of America.
The others receiving the honor this year are Deitre Collins-Parker, a volleyball and basketball player from the University of Hawaii, Mark Fusco, who played hockey at Harvard, Darrell Green, a football and track & field athlete at Texas A&M-Kingsville, Kathryn McMinn, a gymnast from the University of Georgia, and Steve Young, who played football at Brigham Young.
The recipients were chosen by the NCAA Honors Committee, a group comprised of athletic administrators at member schools and nationally distinguished former student-athletes.
Graves is Yale's 13th Silver Anniversary recipient since 1991. Here are the Bulldogs who have received the honor.
YEAR, WINNER, SPORT 1991, Tone Grant, Football 1993, Donald Schollander, Swimming & Diving 1994, Calvin Hill, Football 1995, Kwaku Ohene-Frempong, Soccer/Track & Field 1996, Kurt Schmoke, Football/Lacrosse 1997, Jack Ford, Football 1998, Lawrie Mifflin, Field Hockey 2000, Lisa Rosenblum, Tennis 2004, Virginia "Ginny" Gilder, Rowing 2005, Gary Lawrence, Hockey 2006, Susan D. Wellington, Swimming & Softball 2007, Patricia Melton, Track & Field 2009, Earl "Butch" Graves, Basketball