Cynt Marshall

Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose Honors

NBA Dallas Mavericks’ CEO Cynt Marshall with

2022 Legacy for Children Award


Marshall Recognized as a Trailblazer, Change-Maker, and

Champion for Children

You could say that Cynt Marshall sees the world through the eyes of a child - a world of possibilities. Cynt’s life of blazing trails, making historic change, and championing children has earned her the 2022 Legacy for Children Award from Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose. Born and raised in Richmond, California, Cynt Marshall will be honored at the 22nd annual fundraising event to be held at the Purple Museum in downtown San Jose on Saturday, June 18, at 6 p.m. Funds raised will support the museum’s 2022-23 Restoration and Revitalization Initiative to help restore museum operations and capacity to 2019 pre-COVID levels. 

As the first Black female CEO in the NBA, Cynt’s remarkable story of “firsts” is an inspiring message of tenacity and resilience for all children. Her transformative work in the field of Diversity, Equity, Accessibility and Inclusion (DEAI) at AT&T, and now at the Dallas Mavericks, is creating a more just, fair, and inclusive world for future generations. As a mother of four foster youth and a board member of the Dallas CASA (Court-Appointed Special Advocates) organization, she believes strongly in the stability and permanence for disadvantaged children.

 “Cynt is such a charismatic leader that has dedicated her life to creating a better world for all children through her DEAI work, her value-based leadership, and her involvement with foster children,” said Marilee Jennings, executive director of Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose.

“I’m delighted, excited, and grateful to be honored with the 2022 Legacy for Children Award,” said Cynt Marshall. “The work of the museum is incredibly impactful and life-changing. I’m looking forward to coming home and contributing to the great mission of serving our children.”

“The importance Cynt places on authenticity resonates at the museum where there is no prescribed way of learning and discovering," added Jennings. "We support children’s ability to learn and play in their own way, so they can guide their own experiences. These shared values are why I’m so pleased and humbled to recognize Cynt for a lifetime of achievements toward changing the systems that hold people back, so future generations will have more and better opportunities.” 

Alignment between the honoree and the museum
Like Cynt, the museum supports foster youth and families. The museum’s long-standing partnership with Child Advocates Silicon Valley provides annual memberships to CASAs to use with their designated children to engage in educational hands-on activities. The membership ensures that the museum’s enriching environment is accessible at no cost, to provide a safe and secure place for the adult and child to interact and build trust and strong connections.   

Another shared commitment between Cynt and the museum is the hard work of creating values-driven cultures. The museum received the prestigious Diversity, Equity, Access and Inclusion Award in 2020 by the professional association American Alliance of Museums, which represents over 5,000 museums of all disciplines. As AT&T’s senior vice president of HR and chief diversity officer, Cynt led a team that created the world-class diversity and inclusion culture that landed the company in the top three on Diversity Inc.’s 2017 Top 50 list. In 2019-20, the Dallas Mavericks organization won the NBA Inclusion Leadership Award.

More About Cynt Marshall

Legacy for Children Award

“Keep on Playing” – An Evening for Grown-Ups at the Purple Museum

Dress for Fun: Party on the top and play clothes on the bottom

For the first time in 22 years, the Legacy event will be held at the museum with foods from around the world and performers from the local entertainment scene. All museum exhibits will be open with additional favorites like cornhusk doll-making, art creations in the Leroy Neiman Art Studio, and commemorative photos in front of the stagecoach.

Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose at 180 Woz Way in downtown San Jose

Saturday, June 18, 2022

  • Event begins at 6 p.m.
  • 7 p.m., award presentation including remarks from Cynt Marshall


  • Spencer Grey MagicBay Area award-winning magician
  • FLS+Presents: A high-energy blend of hip-hop, improvisation and vocal stylings from the cast of Freestyle Love Supreme, a Tony award-winning Broadway hit created by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Thomas Kail, and Anthony Veneziale
  • Miko Marks Band, CMT’s Next Women of Country class of 2021

22nd Annual Legacy for Children Award
Each year the Legacy for Children Award honors an individual who has made a tremendous difference in the lives of children. Some of the past recipients include violinist Roberta Guaspari, astronaut Steve Smith, Sesame Street actor Sonia Manzano, civil rights activist and author Ruby Bridges, Steve Wozniak, Olympic medalist Kristi Yamaguchi, Mister Fred Rogers, astronaut Dr. Sally Ride, and former 49er and Raider Ronnie Lott. The event supports the museum’s mission of providing hands-on educational exhibits, in-depth programming, and cultural events designed to give the community’s children the tools that will help them grow into the talented, creative, and diverse workforce of tomorrow.

Last year’s 21st annual event was held virtually and raised $1.4 million.

About Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose
With over 150 interactive exhibits and programs, Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose is one of the largest museums of its kind in the nation. Since opening its doors in 1990, the award-winning museum has welcomed more than 9.6 million visitors and offers new exhibits each year that respond to children's diverse educational needs. In 2017, Bill’s Backyard: Bridge to Nature opened, doubling the museum’s exhibit space with a half-acre of nature exploration and science and environmental education. The striking, 52,000 square foot purple building was designed by Mexico City-based architect Ricardo Legorreta. Encompassing the broad themes of community, connections, and creativity, hands-on exhibits invite self-directed, open-ended explorations. For more information, visit