The following tribute to Muhammad Ali is featured as one of the dual covers of the Summer 2016 issue. The Summer issue features the Power 300: The Most Influential Black Corporate Directors and an alternate cover featuring an exclusive interview with former CEO of Time Warner Richard Parsons. Available at Barnes & Noble and newsstands now.
Muhammad Ali: The Greatest
by Edward Cates
In the offices and homes of black executives (including the publisher of Savoy) there is often an inspiring picture of Muhammad Ali hanging on the wall. One of the most popular images of Ali captures a vivid snapshot of his epic win over Sonny Liston. The photo shows Ali standing over his opponent with a flexed right arm across his chest, yelling in defiant victory. The photo perfectly captures the moment of Ali’s delivery on his promise to win. Similar to the signature photo, Muhammad Ali’s life as a three-time world champion, social activist and humanitarian inspires us to greatness.
On Friday June 10, 2016, the world looked on as family, friends and fans gathered to celebrate the life and home going of Muhammad Ali in his hometown of Louisville Kentucky.
From his humble beginnings in Louisville as Cassius Clay, to the global icon Muhammad Ali, his journey of transformation created historic moments that impacted the world.
Ali was a formidable communicator as evident in his legendary pre-fight rants and lively promotional appearances. He was a master marketer and promoter. His prose often bordered on prophesy with his ability to call the round of victory in many of the early fights in his career. Undeniably, he was a prototype of confidence and unapologetic black pride that was unprecedented on a global media scale.
Ali’s ability to navigate media interviews was often balanced with charm and humor but also a healthy dose of pro-black nationalism. From Howard Cosell in the U.S. to Michael Parkinson in the U.K., Ali faced off with journalists creating interviews that were as educational as they were entertaining.
In 1960, Cassius