Bronx leader is a finalist for Junior Knicks Coach of the Year
A Bronx philanthropist, community leader and basketball coach is a finalist for the Junior Knicks Coach of the Year.
Shakir Seagers is excited and appreciative to be nominated and considered, but says that the $20,000 prize for winning the award would help him to bring more resources to his community.
Many refer to him as Coach Chips, and Seagers’ magnetic personality is loved by all. The only thing outmatching his charisma is his commitment to the community in Kingsbridge.
“We were trying to bring colorful courts back to Kingsbridge, and now it just led into doing more things… programs for the kids, a basketball team for the kids, recreational program for the kids," said Seagers.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Seagers took a step back from his music career which had taken him across the United States. He returned to his home community and started the Rising Kings AAU basketball team through a grant from Gatorade.
“We’re not looking for the best players to put on the floor, we’re looking for the smartest players, the student-athletes, the loyal players, the kids that want to learn and got the heart,” said Seagers.
Seagers works just as hard off the court, helping guide the youth by giving back and helping to fight food insecurity.
“With no resources or any support, Shakir reaches out and he gets donations, and he does food distributions,” said Council Member Pierina Sanchez. “He has activities for the young people.”
Seagers says that while home is where his heart is, this is just the beginning of his impact.
“I’m trying to migrate this thing state to state, not just the Bronx,” said Seagers. “Just to make sure every kid has a chance.”
The Junior Knicks Coach of the Year award will be announced in the first week of April.