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Harrison Barnes will join Kevin Durant, Sue Bird on board of directors for USA Basketball

The gold medalist was one of five athletes to be selected.

2019 FIBA World Cup: Classification 7-8: USA v Poland NBAE via Getty Images

It was announced this week that USA Basketball will be adding five athletes to its 15-person board of directors. Harrison Barnes of the Sacramento Kings and Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets will represent the NBA on the board, while the WNBA will be represented by Sue Bird, Seimone Augustus and Jennifer Azzi.

“We remain unflinchingly and enthusiastically committed to winning and rededicate ourselves to representing our country with honor in international competition,” chairperson Martin Dempsey said. Dempsey was reelected to maintain his position and will do so through the 2024 Paris games.

Basketball - Olympics: Day 16 Getty Images

Barnes has always had a stable connection to Team USA, dating back to his college days as a member of the 2010 USA Junior National Select Team. That team won the Nike Hoop Summit led by Barnes, who scored a team-high 27 points.

Prior to his gold medal run, Barnes was a member of the men’s basketball program at Team USA beginning in 2013, after his rookie season. Barnes was a member of the 2019 World Cup team and qualified as a finalist for the 2021 Tokyo roster before Team USA named its official national team.

Most notably, Barnes was a member of the 2016 national team, winning a gold medal at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic games alongside Durant. As a member of the squad, Barnes averaged 4.3 points and 1.3 rebounds through four games played. The team would go on to win its medal in an 8-0 run, bringing home gold for the third consecutive time.

Other members of the board include NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum and WNBA head of league operations Gloria Nevarez. Including athletes on the board is a new, empowering way to bring voices into the operations from all areas of the game. As a the current Secretary-Treasurer of the NBA’s player association, another role in basketball leadership is deserved and congratulated.