Michael Jordan Makes Largest Individual Donation Ever To Make-A-Wish For His 60th Birthday

Chisom Ndianefo
Close up of Michael Jordan
Getty | Ethan Miller

Michael Jordan is ringing in his 60th birthday by making some people's wishes come true. The retired basketballer played fairy godfather at the Make-A-Wish foundation by donating a whopping $10 million - the highest-ever cash gift for the foundation in 43 years.

The sporting legend kept up a tradition he launched in 1989 in line with his vision of helping children worldwide achieve their dreams. Jordan's philanthropic acts prompted the foundation to name him Ambassador of Make-A-Wish in 2008.

Scroll down to read his statement and learn more about his lavish birthday gift.

Spreading Love At Sixty

Michael Jordan plays for the Chicago Bulls
Flickr | norcal_cardz

The foundation's CEO, Leslie Motter, opened up about partnering with Jordan in a speech on Wednesday, saying he made history with his donation.

She highlighted Jordan's positive impact on creating a better life for children with terminal and critical illnesses through his monetary donations.

Motter wants the 59-year-old's altruism to inspire others in his position to do more for their communities.

The former Chicago Bulls player said watching children with critical illnesses handle their situation with resilience and grace inspired him to contribute towards their recovery.

Many children benefitted and are still benefitting from Jordan's contribution per the Make-A-Wish website.

The Best Birthday Gift Ever

A wrapped gift
Unsplash | Mia Golic
"I can’t think of a better birthday gift than seeing others join me in supporting Make-A-Wish so that every child can experience the magic of having their wish come true."

Jordan's released a statement alongside his $10 million donation saying he wanted children's wishes to come true as he did. Since making his first donation in 1989, partnering with Make-A-Wish became a fulfilling moment for the Charlotte Hornets owner.

Jordan bought the team for $175 million and held the controlling interest as its chairperson.

Career Legacy And Net Worth

Michael Jordan dunking a basketball

Jordan has an unprecedented legacy, winning five MVP awards in six NBA championships. The former star player is also an Olympic gold medalist after leading team USA to victory in 1992.

He's considered the greatest basketball player of all time for achieving his record in fifteen pro seasons before retiring in 2003.

Following retirement, Jordan ventured into business by partnering with Nike for the Jumpman Jordan sneakers and owning a basketball team, the Charlotte Hornets. The 59-year-old became a billionaire in 2014 and is currently worth $1.7 billion.

The former Bulls shooting guard was a Dream Team member in 1992 and 2017. He won an Emmy for his docuseries The Last Dance in 2020. Jordan's success on and off the court is a dream for basketballers after him.

Being A Patron And Ambassador For Make-A-Wish

Michael Jordan and Make-A-Wish beneficiary Donovan
Wish.Org | Make-A-Wish

Make-A-Wish Foundation isn't the only beneficiary of Jordan's vast wealth, as the billionaire donates to just causes. In 2020, $50 million of his net worth went to organizations that pursue racial equality.

However, as an ambassador, Jordan favors Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the organization has benefitted from his wealth. Per Forbes, the retired athlete contributed almost $430 million to its funds within the last five years.

Other foundation patrons include Marthe Keller, Thabo Sefalosha, Batia Ofer, Robert Small, Ian Morton, Leslie Rose OBE, Jessie J, and more.