01-20-2020  3:49 pm   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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The Skanner in Step With Changing Times

Celebrating a history of service

Starbucks, Home of the $4 Latte, is Moving Into Poor Areas

Starbucks plans to open or remodel 85 stores by 2025 in rural and urban communities across the U.S. The effort will bring to 100 the number of "community stores" Starbucks has opened since it announced the program in 2015

Native American Curriculum Rolls Out in Oregon Classrooms

The state developed the curriculum, as required by Senate Bill 13, with the input of Native leaders for 18 months, but is still behind. A soft roll-out begins this month

Community Surprised at Police Chief’s Departure, Concerned by Quick Replacement

Deputy Chief Jami Resch immediately named as successor.


Annual “Salute to Greatness” Luncheon Celebrating Students, Community & Civic Leaders

Keynote Speaker: Ms. Rukaiyah Adams, Chair of Oregon Investment Council & Chief Investment Officer at Meyer Memorial Trust....

Grant High School Students to Read Their Own Work at Broadway Books

Local author and writing instructor Joanna Rose will lead thegroup of young writers at the event to be held on Wednesday, January 22 ...

AG Rosenblum Announces $4 Million Settlement with CenturyLink

Since 2014, Oregon DOJ has received more than 1,200 consumer complaints about CenturyLink ...

Black Guest at Downtown Portland Hotel Sues Over ‘No Party’ Promise

Felicia Gonzales claims the front desk clerk at the Residence Inn told her that all guests had to sign the policy, but she watched...

National Urban League Warns Trump Administration: Don't Weaken Community Reinvestment Act to Allow Racial Discrimination in Lending

Proposed changes to the Community Reinvestment Act could further limit access to the American Dream ...

Classes cancelled at Beaverton High following fire

BEAVERTON, Ore. (AP) — Classes at a high school in Beaverton, Oregon, will be cancelled Tuesday following a weekend fire.KOIN reports that investigators concluded on Sunday that the “failure of a small refrigerator” in one of the Beaverton High School classrooms started the...

Idaho lawmakers consider changes in primary voting rules

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Voters will have about two weeks to choose a political party if they want to vote in Idaho's Democratic and Republican presidential primaries in March following action by a House panel on Monday.The State Affairs Committee sent to the full House legislation that will take...

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...


Martin Luther King Day is an Opportunity for Service

Find out where you can volunteer and make a difference to the community ...

Looking to 2020 — Put Your Vote to WORK!

Ronald Reagan, who turned his back on organized labor and started America’s middle-class into a tailspin, has recently been voted by this administration’s NLRB into the Labor Hall of Fame ...

How Putting Purpose Into Your New Year’s Resolutions Can Bring Meaning and Results

Only 4% of people report following through on all of the resolutions they personally set ...

I Was Just Thinking… Mama in the Classroom

I wrote my first column in 1988 for a local newspaper about a beloved Dallas guidance counselor and teacher that most students called “Mama” ...


Martin Luther King Jr. Day: Faith, politics mix on holiday

ATLANTA (AP) — Against the backdrop of a presidential election year, Monday's Martin Luther King Jr. holiday found leaders still wrestling over how to best embody the slain civil rights leader.In Atlanta, Republicans told a sometimes cool crowd at Ebenezer Baptist Church, King's onetime...

2020 Democratic contenders link arms in MLK Jr. Day march

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Democratic presidential candidates hit pause on their recent feuds Monday as they walked shoulder to shoulder through the streets of South Carolina’s capital city to honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. and rally around their push to defeat President Donald...

Baker apologizes for calling Pressley's MLK speech a 'rant'

BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker apologized Monday after he used the word “rant” to describe remarks from U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley at an event honoring Martin Luther King Jr.Pressley, a Boston Democrat, had delivered a speech about inequality and the unfinished...


Robert De Niro gets political as he accepts SAG Awards honor

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Robert De Niro received the Screen Actors Guild lifetime achievement award Sunday to praise for his illustrious career and thunderous applause from his fellow performers, but spent much of his acceptance speech on politics. “There's right and there's wrong, and...

Prince Harry: 'No other option' but to cut royal ties

LONDON (AP) — Prince Harry said Sunday that he felt “great sadness” but found “no other option” to cutting almost all of his and his wife Meghan’s royal ties in the hopes of achieving a more peaceful life.The comments were Harry’s first public...

'Parasite' parties, Leo greets young fans inside SAG Awards

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Off-camera and during commercials, the stars at the Screen Actors Guild Awards got to rub shoulders, give congratulatory kisses, and meet for the first or the 50th time. Here are some of the more memorable moments from inside Sunday night's ceremony at the Shrine...


James Dean revival spurs debate on raising the digital dead

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The men bringing James Dean back to life for a forthcoming film are aiming not just to...

Survivor recounts confused, chaotic cult rite that killed 7

SANTIAGO, Panama (AP) — A survivor of the cult ceremony that killed her daughter and six other people in a...

Human-to-human transmission confirmed in China coronavirus

BEIJING (AP) — The head of a Chinese government expert team said Monday that human-to-human transmission...

Experts say Vincent van Gogh self-portrait is genuine

AMSTERDAM (AP) — After years of doubts about its authenticity, experts in Amsterdam have confirmed that a...

Putin sends his constitutional proposals to Parliament

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday submitted to parliament a package of...

3 killed, 100-plus hurt in collapse during Ethiopia ceremony

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — At least three people were killed and more than 100 others injured when a...

Bruce Poinsette of The Skanner News

Kumbeno Memory talking with his players after a dribbling drill

The documentary "Hoop Dreams" begins with clips of bright eyed teenagers Arthur Agee and William Gates playing basketball on the courts of Chicago and proclaiming their love for the game. It follows them for five years as they experience highs and lows in their efforts to make it to the next level.

When you walk into Kumbeno Memory's gym and see 11-year-old Isaac Rosenthal panting as he does extra shooting drills with a professional more than twice his size, you can see why Memory named his business after the award winning film.

"There is a culture that is set in our gym," says the 35-year-old basketball skills coach. "We foster teaching work ethics."

Memory started Hoop Dreams Basketball in 2002. The program provides basketball skills and conditioning training for hoop enthusiasts as young as eight and operates five times a week at the Mittleman Jewish Community Center. Although the coach doesn't consider himself business minded, he has used his love of basketball and appetite for learning to expand his business and help his Dreamers (participants) grow as players and people.

Memory demonstrating defensive slides
for his players

"I had no idea what kind of impact basketball could have," says Chantal Rosenthal, Isaac's mother. "Now everything is 100 percent. His schoolwork. His focus."

Isaac was only six when he first saw a Hoop Dreams workout. He decided the intensity appealed to him. Now he participates in all available workouts with both younger and older players.

"He goes in before workouts and shoots," says Chantal. "When he comes home he does pushups and sit-ups. He doesn't eat any junk food."

Memory didn't start playing organized basketball until the sixth grade. The son of renowned Portland musician Thara Memory says he was throwing the ball off the backboard to himself, which shows how serious he was at the time.

Despite getting a taste of varsity experience as a sophomore at Jefferson, he played strictly JV as a junior after he transferred to Cleveland.

Memory was disappointed at the time but took the experience as a blessing in disguise. Playing JV allowed him to run the point guard position and build his basketball IQ.

"I can relate to players from all different levels, whether you're talented or not the most talented," he says. "I come from that cloth."

A Hoop Dreams participant practicing closing out
on a shooter and yelling out "Shot". Memory
emphasizes communication on the court.

By the time he graduated, he was skilled enough to play college ball. His stops included College of the Desert, Clark College, Belmont Abbey and the now defunct Cascade College program.

Memory had no intentions of coaching. After college, he temporarily worked at FedEx and the Olive Garden. He also did odd jobs.

As fate would have it, he was playing pickup games at the Blazers' practice facility with his good friend and former Blazer Ime Udoka, when one of the assistant coaches, Dan Panaggio, suggested Memory coach his son's sixth grade team. Panaggio was impressed by his play and the way he communicated on the court.

When Memory interviewed with the Tualatin Youth Association, they said he was overqualified, despite never coaching before, and placed him with an 8th grade team. During that season, he took advantage of other coaches' cancelled practices and used their gym time to get extra work in with his players.

The experienced motivated Memory to look for a gym so he could turn coaching into a business. His search would lead him to the Portland Athletic Club and one of his first clients, the owner's grandson and former Grant High star Dominic Waters.

"That's my big brother," says Waters. "I tell him I love him every time I get off the phone with him. He's had such an impact on my life, on and off the court, teaching me how to develop as a man as well as teaching me life lessons that he's gone through."

"He made me stronger as a player. He made me smarter."

Waters, who will be playing professionally in Slovenia this upcoming season, was one of many Dreamers that benefited from Memory's desire to get his players into college.

Shortly after Hoop Dreams began, Memory decided to use his spare time to seek out help with recruitment. He would send emails and bios to college coaches throughout the country.

From 2007-2009, he ran the I-5 Elite AAU program, which was nationally recognized for its success in tournaments and in getting players exposure.

The list of Dreamers on the Hoop Dreams site reads like a who's who of Oregon's high school and college talent, including recent NBA draftees and Jefferson High alums Terrence Jones and Terrence Ross.

Despite his AAU success and murmurs of more lucrative prospects in his future, Memory has continued to focus on building Hoop Dreams through the same hard work and discipline he tries to instill in his players.

He says he is constantly going to practices at various levels, reading coaches' booklets and blogs and watching videos to find new drills and tweak current ones.

The advent of social media has also helped Memory reach basketball enthusiasts. He says he wasn't big on sites like Facebook and Twitter before but he has learned how to use them to enhance his brand.

Memory's Facebook page is an ongoing discussion of basketball related topics, with the coach often posing questions to his followers on anything from what makes a good defender to comparisons of past and present NBA greats. He also posts videos of drills, as well as articles highlighting Dreamers' achievements.

"I'm big on wanting to spread the word," says Memory. "I know how much work those guys have put in the gym to get where they're at."

By the end of September, Hoop Dreams plans to begin releasing a weekly video series. It will feature Memory talking directly to his audience about anything from shooting technique to AAU basketball.

He is also looking to expand Hoop Dreams' physical presence by taking clinics to smaller towns throughout Oregon. The program recently held a clinic in Lebanon and has others scheduled in cities such as Salem and Sisters.

Memory says there is a possibility that other Hoop Dreams branches might pop up in the future. If that does happen he wants the atmosphere to be exactly the same as it is here. Some of his players have gone on to coaching and he says those are the kinds of guys he would trust to run the program in smaller markets.

In the meantime, Memory says he is focused on teaching his pupils the right way to play basketball and helping them reach the next level.

While he says the work they do speaks for itself, the endorsements from coaches, players and parents ring pretty loud too.

"There's nothing like it," says Waters. "I think if people focus clearly on basketball and want to improve, there's nobody like him because he knows as long as you stay in the gym with him, listen and learn, there's no reason you can't be at a high level."

For more information, go to www.hoopdreamsbasketball.org.

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