Dwyane Wade on Finding the Power of His Voice

Dwyane has experienced the thrill of dominating the court after three NBA championships and thirteen All-Star appearances. But the retired superstar knows that’s not when he had the most power.

“My most powerful wasn’t my ability to score and dunk and win championships,” he said at the TIME100 Gala Wednesday in New York City. “My most powerful is my voice and just me being a human and understanding what’s going on in the world and speaking on it.”

He is a 2020 TIME100 List member who has found his voice speaking out against injustice. During the opening ceremonies of the 2016 ESPYs Awards show, he gave a moving speech urging fellow athletes to leverage their celebrity to support social change. His Wade Family Foundation continues his advocacy for communities of colour and youth who are disadvantaged.

“We’re going to continue to support people on the ground [who are] doing the work,” he said. “We will continue to use our voice, continue to do the things that we can to make sure that this world is a better place.”

At the TIME100 Summit on Tuesday, he spoke out passionately against lawmakers who are passing antitransgender laws, as he expressed fear for the safely of his trans daughter Zaya.“Come and live a day with my daughter,” he said Tuesday. “Come and see how it is to walk through this world as her.”

Wade, while walking the Gala red carpet sent a message of support to transgender youths and others who are being discriminated because they identify with their feelings and sexuality. “I want to tell them I love them,” he said. “I’m proud of them. Keep being who you truly are. Don’t let anybody tell you who you are. I knew what I wanted to do when I was young, so no-one needs to tell you.”

Returning after two years on pause, the TIME100 Gala is TIME’s annual celebration of the TIME100 list of the world’s most influential people, released this year on May 23. Gala attendees include leaders and stars from all industries, as well as celebrities, for a lively evening of celebration and meaningful conversation. This year’s Gala features live performances from Miranda Lambert and Mary J. Blige, two honorees on the 2022 TIME100 list. Further attendees from this year’s list include actors Andrew Garfield, Ariana DeBose, and Amanda Seyfried, musicians Jazmine Sullivan, Jon Batiste, and Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, athlete Eileen Gu, director Taika Waititi, and legal activist Chase Strangio,

TIME has teamed up with ABC for this exclusive television event. TIME100: The World’s Most Influential People airs Sunday, June 12, 2008 at 8 PM EDT (ABC)This video features Simu Liu (host), Quinta Brunson (director), Sevgil Muzaieva (Ukrainian journalist), and much more.

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