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Hawks honors founder of first park in Georgia named for a Latinx person

Isabel González Whitaker is the founder of the Sara J. González Memorial Park in northwest Atlanta.

ATLANTA — On Sunday night before facing off against the Charlotte Hornets, the Atlanta Hawks are honoring one woman who they say is committed to making an impact.

As part of the 'Forever 404 Honors presented by Sharecare,' the Peach State's NBA team is celebrating Isabel González Whitaker, founder of the Sara J. González Memorial Park in northwest Atlanta.

The Forever 404 initiative, which was implemented on Nov. 3 during the team's home game against the Utah Jazz, is part of an effort to recognize a dozen people "who are committed to serving Atlanta and embody a unique combination of cause, culture and community" at 12 home games.

González Whitaker is the third recipient of the Forever 404 honor. According to a statement from the team, she debuted the first park in the state to be named for a Latinx person. The park is a tribute to her mother, Sara J. González. It's a recreational space dedicated to "diversity, inclusion, unity and equity" and is focused around a "pan-generational, community-centric" design, according to the team.

Credit: Atlanta Hawks

"As a lifelong fan of the Hawks, this award is so incredibly meaningful to me and my family," González Whitaker said. "The Hawks and their partner organizations have consistently demonstrated positive community impact in this dynamic and diverse city. I’m proud that the work we do helping others at the Sara J. González Memorial Park has been recognized by this important Atlanta institution.”

Sharecare is the Hawks' official jersey patch partner. The digital health company is donating $1,000 to a nonprofit operated by Friends of Sara J. González Park called Park Pride as part of the recognition. González Whitaker and all other 'Forever 404' honorees will also be gifted four tickets to a Hawks game and a custom-framed Hawks 2021-22 NIKE NBA City Edition jersey. 

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