ATLANTA, Feb. 15, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- For the eighth consecutive year, AutoTrader.com® has partnered with Turner Sports and the NBA to change the lives of a deserving family through a fantasy basketball game.
During the regular NBA basketball season, Turner Sports' Emmy Award-winning Inside the NBA studio team featuring Ernie Johnson, Shaquille O'Neal, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley faced off in the AutoTrader.com All-Star Drive fantasy basketball challenge, with the winner receiving a donation of a new vehicle to the charity of his choice, courtesy of AutoTrader.com. This year's winner was Kenny Smith, who was playing to benefit Feed the Children, a charity that provides food, hope and resources to millions of children and their families in the United States and around the world each year.
In the weeks leading up to the NBA All-Star weekend, Smith worked with Feed the Children to identify a local family in need as the recipient of the vehicle. During a ceremony on Saturday, Feb. 15, Smith and AutoTrader.com President's Award winner Maggie Jolitz presented the Ashford family of New Orleans, La., with the gift of a brand new 2014 Kia Optima EX, sourced from Premier Kia of Kenner, La.
Ashford, a single mother to a six-year old son, juggles a full-time work schedule and raising her son with serving as a primary caregiver for ailing family members. The keys were handed over during "The Kenny Smith Experience," a charity event held at Xavier University of New Orleans, during which three semi tractor-trailers full of food and essentials were distributed to help 1,200 needy families in the New Orleans area.
"Giving back to the community through organizations like Feed the Children continues to be one of my most humbling endeavors," said Kenny Smith. "A heartfelt thanks goes to AutoTrader.com for generously donating the vehicle to the Ashford family."
This annual activity is a key component of AutoTrader.com's longstanding partnership with Turner Sports and the NBA.
"AutoTrader.com's commitment to the community remains one of our core company values, so this activity holds a special place in our hearts," said John Kovac, senior vice president, Marketing, AutoTrader Group. "We are pleased to have the opportunity to present this Kia Optima EX to Ms. Ashford and her family and wish them all the best in the future."
Created in 1997, Atlanta-based AutoTrader.com is the Internet's ultimate automotive marketplace. As a leading resource for car shoppers and sellers, AutoTrader.com aggregates millions of new, used and certified pre-owned cars from thousands of dealers and private sellers and provides expert articles and reviews. AutoTrader.com, which also operates the AutoTraderClassics.com auto marketing brand, is wholly owned by AutoTrader Group. Additionally, AutoTrader Group owns Kelley Blue Book (KBB.com) as well as three other companies that provide a full suite of software tools that help dealers and manufacturers manage their inventory and advertising online: vAuto, HomeNet Automotive and VinSolutions. AutoTrader Group is a majority-owned subsidiary of Cox Enterprises. Providence Equity Partners is a 25 percent owner of the company and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is also an investor. For more information, please visit press.autotrader.com.
About Turner Sports
Turner Sports, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., is an industry leader in televised and multimedia sports content, airing championship-level sporting events on TBS, TNT and truTV, and managing some of the most popular digital sports brands. Turner Sports' television lineup includes the NBA, Major League Baseball, the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Championship, NASCAR and professional golf. The company's digital portfolio includes Bleacher Report, NCAA.com and March Madness Live, and PGA.com, as well as an accompanying collection of mobile websites and connected device apps. Turner Sports and the NBA also jointly manage NBA Digital, which includes NBA TV, NBA.com, NBA LEAGUE PASS, NBA Mobile, the NBA Game Time App, NBADLEAGUE.com and WNBA.com.