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Magic Johnson to join push to help minority boys

Published on NewsOK Modified: May 30, 2014 at 12:49 pm •  Published: May 30, 2014

WASHINGTON (AP) — Basketball legend Earvin "Magic" Johnson will help lead a White House push to get more Americans involved in reversing underachievement among young minority men, President Barack Obama said Friday.

Johnson, along with Joe Echevarria, chief executive of accounting and consulting firm Deloitte LLP, will help lead an "external push to get more folks on board," Obama said as he met with stakeholders in his "My Brother's Keeper" program.

The president initiated the program in February to help try to reverse some of the challenges facing black, Hispanic and Native American boys and young men. Obama discussed an initial "My Brother's Keeper" progress report with his Cabinet on Thursday and met with members of the task force on Friday.

Obama said he was pleased with the task force's progress so far, and the final goal will be to "really put in place not only an all-hands-on-deck effort on the federal level, but a partnership with the private sector so that we can see some concrete outcomes."

Johnson was a Hall of Fame player in college and with the Los Angeles Lakers. Since retiring from basketball, he has been successful in business, investing in movie theaters, a production company and restaurants. He has also been an activist in the fight against HIV after being diagnosed with the virus in 1991.

Echevarria worked with Obama on the White House Forum on Women and Economy in 2012. He has served on the Corporate Advisory Board of the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting, which named him Executive of the Year in 2007, and chairs the University of Miami's business school board of overseers.

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