The men of the NBA are used to celebrity and attention on a regular basis but often obscured are the vital characters not squeaking up and down the parquet, that is, the players’ wives. Behind the Bench, the National Basketball Wives Association, holds an annual gathering each year to recognize the work of these women and others. This year New Orleans hosted the 7th Annual Luncheon on Feb. 16.

Hosted by Jaci Wilson-Reid and Morris L. Reid, co-managing directors of Westin Rinehart in Washington, D.C., the 7th Annual Luncheon honoring Behind the Bench was a great success. Wilson-Reid also served as emcee and Dr. Eliot Battle, laser surgery expert, delivered the keynote address. 

This year, Chrysa Chin (NBA) and Ellen Haddigan (Russell Simmons’ Diamond Empowerment Fund) received recognition for their leadership. NBA wives Peja Stojakovic (New Orleans Hornets) and Chris Duhon (Chicago Bulls) were recognized for their work in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans, as was BET Chairman/CEO Debra Lee (whose award was presented by actress Gabrielle Union).