Join us for S4:EP29 of the Legacy After the Locker Room Podcast as Paul “Showtime” Gaffney, a Harlem Globetrotters legend, sits down with Kayla Bradham to discuss how he founded the nation’s first athletic christian college preparatory academy for sports enthusiasts!
Paul Gaffney, founder/commissioner of GAPA, a perfect example of how the concepts of sports, innovative educational programs, and community partnerships all worked together to make a difference in preparing a Sports Enthusiast for college, a career, and life. His personal life story is what inspired him to create GAPA.
Before the crowds started screaming “Showtime”, before becoming a professional athlete and a member of the basketball Hall of Fame, or developing GAPA, there was a baby boy born in a small coal-mining town in rural Kentucky to an unmarried teenage mom. Realizing, during her pregnancy, that she could not provide for him properly, she placed him up for adoption before birth. At two years old, his adoptive mother died with him by her side.
His adoptive father, then a single parent, raised him alone.
By all accounts, these scenarios are the makings of a negative path for an “at-risk child”. This is how Paul Gaffney’s life started, but his outcome is quite different from what it could have been. His life is a perfect example of how the concepts of sports, innovative educational programs, and community partnerships all worked together to make a difference in preparing a Sports Enthusiast for college, a career, and life. His personal life story is the concepts of what inspired him to create GAPA.
Gaffney played professionally with the Harlem Globetrotters for 15 years, has over 42 years of experience in the sports industry, and has worked over 11 years in the public school system. He has a B.S. degree in Business Management from Tennessee Wesleyan University, is a member of the AAU’s Future Leaders Committee, and a Board of Director on several boards. Gaffney has been inducted in the Tennessee Wesleyan University’s Hall of Fame and the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame with the Harlem Globetrotters.
He knows the Journey!
HIGHLIGHTS OF PAUL’S PODCAST
- 00:00 Introduction
- 00:25 Paul discusses his upbringing
- 03:38 Paul’s involvement in sports growing up
- 07:30 Getting into basketball and business
- 09:40 Playing professional basketball
- 11:13 Playing with the Globetrotters
- 12:10 Retirement
- 12:55 Founding nation’s first team college preparatory academy for sports enthusiasts
- 15:03 It’s not just the physical side of sports
- 16:36 Sponsor Message: Dugout Mugs (30% OFF Code: Kayla30)
- 17:16 How the Globetrotters helped him gain business skills
- 23:28 Representation and opportunities in sports
- 26:02 The academy focuses on multiple aspects of sports
- 27:54 Where to contact Paul Gaffney online
- 29:16 Autograph Donation
- 30:00 Paul’s thank you message
- 30:45 Reggie’s Words of Wisdom
SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS AND WEBSITE
- Website: Gaffney Athletic Preparatory Academy
- LinkedIn: Paul Gaffney
- Twitter: @GapAcademyTN
- Facebook: Gaffney Athletic Preparatory Academy
- Instagram: @showtime_gaffne