The Dallas Cowboys are nicknamed America’s Team for a reason. They are traditionally either the most loved or hated team, depending on whom you ask, and usually top the charts for merchandise sales. Cowboys’ players over the years are themselves giant celebrities on the field and often continue to make an impact long after their football days are over.
Here is a list of top five former Cowboys who are actively making an impact in the community.
1. Emmitt Smith, RB
The NFL’s all-time leading rusher is an all-time member of the community, as you can see through the Pat & Emmitt Smith Foundation. Over the years, Smith has raised millions of dollars for numerous charities, such as the S.M. Wright Foundation, DECA, and numerous others. He holds an annual “Emmitt Smith Celebrity Golf Invitational”, which raised $1.2 million in 2015. “Some people do it in a volunteering way, where they volunteer their time, some people do it by investing in the community,” Smith said at his charity event in last year. “Some people get involved with charities like ours and provide resources, relationships and others so we can continue to do the work we’re doing to touch the community that are in need.” These proceeds will fund summer camps, afterschool programs, college tuition and other educational programming that impacts more than 25,000 children annually. In total, the PESC has 22 total partners with a mission to be a public charity that creates and funds unique educational experiences and enrichment opportunities for underserved children in North Texas.
2. Roger Staubach, QB
Known for his humanitarian efforts, “Captain America” has received numerous awards over the years for his work in the community, most notably accepting the Natural Leader Award at the Billiard Ball to benefit the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Dallas. He and his wife started the Roger Staubach Foundation in 1979 with a different approach than most. The money that goes to charity does not come from soliciting donations, throwing parties or publicly asking for it. Instead, the money comes directly out of his pocket, which comes from his real-estate business “The Staubach Company.” The business is a multi-million dollar industry, so he doesn’t feel the need to donate with other’s money. His gifts from the foundation range from $500 to $25,000, to the Children’s Cancer Fund, the Genesis Women’s Shelter and others.
3. Troy Aikman, QB
As a survivor of skin cancer, Aikman has been an active spokesperson for Melanoma Research Foundation since he was announced to be cancer free in 1998. He spreads awareness through social media to his 1.48 million followers. In addition, he founded the Troy Aikman Foundation back in 1992 for children, which has touched many young lives through services such as creating colorful recreation areas in children’s hospitals. His signature “Aikman’s End Zones” includes state-of-the-art home theaters and computers networked to other children’s hospitals for kids to socialize. This year, Aikman joined the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas Board of Directors, which aims to “change the system” and a build a stronger community. “I’m proud of this partnership, and hope my commitment will be a catalyst for others to invest in brighter futures for the next generation,” Aikman said after joining the board. “It’s important to me to make a lasting difference for Dallas, and inspire my daughters toward a legacy of giving back.”
4. Drew Pearson, WR
The former wide receiver is a now the host of the “Drew Pearson Show,” which has a unique partnership with charities. The show over the years highlights different charities throughout North Texas and promotes events to help bring in donations. The show has a full-time partnership with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Pearson uses his fame as a tool to help those less fortunate through social media and other platforms of broadcast.
5. Michael Irvin, WR
Irvin is a bright personality on television, but the road that took him to where he is today shows how strong-headed he is. In addition to giving back to the community, the former wide receiver goes around the country as a motivational speaker to young men and kids. His goal is to inspire them to change themselves for the better and live their life to the fullest through his training camps and speaking engagements. According to his website, michaelirvin.com, “With so many things that he wants to share about success and life in general, he has chosen to focus on sharing his insights about fatherhood.” Michael grew up as one of 16 children and had a rough childhood in South Florida, which he credits to his success today. His works with charities, such as the Boys & Girls Club, amongst others, emphasizing the importance of family and leadership.
More stories you might like