Same name

Charles Henry “Chuck” Cooper (September 29, 1926 – February 5, 1984)

Chuck Cooper was the first African American player to be drafted by an NBA team (Boston Celtics), in 1950.

Cooper’s experience was laced with racial prejudice and, at times, rampant segregation on road trips at restaurants and hotels.

Cooper later earned a Masters in Social Work degree from the University of Minnesota, served on Pittsburgh’s school board, and became the city’s first African American department head as director of parks and recreation.