Harlem Globetrotters Visit Nicholas Murray Butler School No. 23
Elizabeth native and Globetrotter superstar, Latif “JET” Rivers and “SPEEDY” Artis made a special appearance at Nicholas Murray Butler School No. 23 to speak with second, fifth, and eighth grade students about the effects of bullying and to deliver a motivational anti-bullying message.
Introduced the City of Elizabeth’s Recreation Director and Elizabeth Board of Education member Stanley Neron as well as School No. 23 principal Berthenia Harmon, Rivers and Artis delivered an inspiring program meant to provide strategies to overcome bullying, which they mentioned was the number 1 problem in schools as reported by a survey of school aged children. The dynamic duo invited students down to introduce the importance of T.E.A.M., an acronym for Talk (and Listen), Empathy, Ask Questions, Mobilize. Jet and Speedy went into detail why each of those aspects of T.E.A.M. is important while playing games with the crowd and also involving members of the audience in their famed magic circle. Near the end of the program, Rivers excited the crowd by making a shot from the opposite free throw line.
For Jet, it was a special homecoming as he was able to return to the school in which he once was a student to give hope to the students who have followed him. Rivers, a 2009 graduate of Elizabeth High School, played for the varsity boys basketball team, earning All-State, First Team All-Union County, and All-Watchung Conference honors.
Among those in attendance were Superintendent of Recreation Malik Jackson, Elizabeth Board of Education member Jerry Jacobs, Elizabeth Public Schools Superintendent Olga Hugelmeyer, Elizabeth Public Schools Business Administrator Harold E. Kennedy, Jr., Elizabeth Public Schools Athletic Director Ben Candelino, Elizabeth Public Schools Coordinator of Athletics and Special Activities and Head Coach of Elizabeth High School’s Varsity Boys Basketball team Philip Colicchio, Elizabeth Public Schools Supervisor of Athletics Marthelly Luc, Jr., and Elizabeth Public Schools Lead Investigator Tomas Escribano.