We had the good fortune of connecting with Korey Harris and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Korey, what’s the end goal, career-wise?
Honestly, this is a trick question to in my opinion. To me, there is no “end goal” because that phrase implies that there will eventually be a stopping point. It is as if when you say that you have reached a certain level that there is no more work to be done. Instead, I want what I am able to accomplish as a basketball coach to catapult me into more impactful and lasting areas of social change, community outreach, and business. I’ve got the NBA sidelines in my sights. I want to learn what it takes to lead a group of individuals from different backgrounds towards a common goal. As a young, minority coach in today’s social climate, I know that I’m in a special place and time. I have the chance to represent more than just myself in every practice, game, or office that I step into. I am an representation of all of the great minority coaches that have come before me and an ambassador for the next generation that will come after. My coaching career will serve as a platform for activism and paving the way for others that look like me to gain equal opportunity.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
The only advantage I probably have over anyone reading this article is that I’m willing to fail. I’ll lose everything, get embarrassed, and get turned down before I quit chasing what I want. I don’t think that I’m doing anything different or impossible for someone else to do… I just decided to stop worrying about what other people thought about me. I knew the game of basketball was my way out. I can still remember guys laughing at me for starting a basketball training business at 19, going back to school 5 years after graduating high school, believing that I could play college basketball after NEVER playing in high school, and moving to China alone. See… Your vision isn’t supposed to always make sense to other people. That’s why it’s YOURS! It won’t be easy, but you have to be willing to walk alone. You’ll have nights where you question yourself and think about giving up. Hell, I know I had plenty of nights like that. But when you continue to level up and things manifest, it will all make sense.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
No lie… My whole life is basketball, so I’m probably not who you want to ask LOL. I sacrificed a social life in my 20’s for hustling and grinding to get my business off the ground, but if you’re looking for a couple gyms and spots to eat after a good workout/open gym, I got you! I gotta show love to the gym where my business started! – Ron Anderson Rec Center (Powder Springs, GA) Shoutout to my other stomping grounds! – McEachern United Methodist Church – Fair Oaks Rec Center – Booths Ward Rec Center – Smyrna Rec Center – Samson’s Sports Complex (East Atlanta – Lithonia, GA) – LA Fitness And you know I got to show love to every Subway and Waffle House throughout the city that made it a little easier for the kid to eat a good meal when I had a pocket full of lint! Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’d like to give a HUGE shoutout to my mother, Manitta, for sacrificing making sure that I had the opportunity to be more than just another statistic. Much love to Coach Barry Williams for giving me the opportunity at 19 years old to give back and realize my gift for working with young athletes on the sidelines. You and your family will always be my family! Thanks to all of the great coaches and mentors over the years who have taught me what it takes. I’m still learning from you! Thanks to the thousands of players and families over the 10+ years that have trusted me. I wouldn’t be here without you. Much love to the love of my life, Breanna, for believing in my dreams back when I was just broke and ambitious. Your love and support is my fuel when I’m tired. Love you. And lastly… There is no me without Jesus Christ. Period.
Chinese Basketball Association Trinity Bible College Athletics