David Stern

David Stern

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Updated On June 14, 2022
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David Stern was a remarkable American lawyer and business executive. David Stern is remembered for his contributions in developing and broadening the NBA’s audience and for being the longest-tenured commissioner.

Early Life

David Stern was born on September 22, 1942, and he was 78 years old at the time of his demise on January 1, 2020. David’s full name is David Joel Stern. Likewise, a native of Manhattan, New York City, David grew up in Teaneck, New Jersey. Talking about his family, David’s parents were his mother Anna (née Bronstein) – who lived from 1918 to 1990 – and his father William Stern – who lived from 1918 to 1980.

Moreover, David came from a Jewish family and had two siblings. David’s father ran a Jewish delicatessen. Talking more about his childhood, David was a New York Knicks fan. Similarly, David considered Carl Braun his hero and David also attended games at Madison Square Garden with his father.

Additionally, David played basketball in adulthood. However, he sustained a serious right knee injury while he was playing at a New York Lawyers League game. Regarding his educational journey, David graduated from Teaneck High School in the year 1959. Later on, David attended Rutgers University, graduating in the year 1963 with a B.A. in history.

Moreover, at the aforementioned university, David was a member of the Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity. Later on, he went on to attend law school at Columbia University. From there, David received a J.D. in the year 1966.


David suffered a brain hemorrhage on December 12, 2019. Subsequently, the business executive underwent emergency surgery. Sadly, David passed away on 1st January 2020 in Manhattan and was 77 years old.

After his demise, all NBA teams wore black bands on their jerseys for the remainder of the 2019–20 season. This was as a remembrance of David Stern. Several basketball legends and players including Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Michael Jordan, and Magic Johnson among others mourned David’s death. Sadly, Kobe also passed away only 25 days after David’s passing due to a helicopter accident.

Career and Professional Life

David Stern

Caption: David Stern and Magic Johnson in the year 1987. Source: Wall Street Journal

Professionally, David Stern was a lawyer and business executive. David was famous as the commissioner of the National Basketball Association (NBA) from the year 1984 to 2014. During his tenure, David also oversaw NBA basketball’s growth into one of the world’s most popular sports during the 1990s and 2000s.

Moreover, people credit David for developing and broadening the NBA’s audience at an international level through playing exhibition games, training camps, and recruiting more international players. Similarly, the NBA also opened 12 offices in cities outside the United States on David’s instruction. The games were also broadcasted to over 200 territories in over 40 languages.

Furthermore, David is also behind the founding of the Women’s National Basketball Association, the NBA G League, as well as the NBA’s development league. Under his guidance, the NBA additionally launched its digital presence with NBA.com, NBA League Pass, and NBA TV. Likewise, David established the NBA’s social responsibility program called NBA Cares.

More Details

Starting the NBA in 1966 as an outside counsel, David then became the general counsel in the year 1978, and eventually the league’s executive vice president in the year 1980. David Stern also was the commissioner starting in the year 1984.

30 years later, David retired in the year 2014. In the history of major North American sports leagues, Stern became the longest-tenured commissioner. The late executive was also inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2014 as well as in the FIBA Hall of Fame. Earlier in 1998, David was also inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.

Furthermore, David was on the Rutgers University Board of Overseers. He was also a Chair Emeritus of the Board of Trustees of Columbia University. The late executive was a member of the Council on Foreign Relations too.

David Stern

Caption: David Stern speaking during an event at the NBA. Source: New York Post

Net worth

Moving on, David earned a $9 million salary during his later years as a commissioner. Besides, this, David’s net worth estimation at the time of his demise was approximately $135 million US dollars.

Personal Life

David Stern was married to Dianne Bock Stern from 27 November 1963 until his demise. The couple shared two sons namely Eric and Andrew. Moreover, the family resided in Scarsdale, New York.

David Stern

Caption: David Stern posing for a photo with his wife Dianne Bock Stern. Source: NCERT Point

Body Measurements and Social Media

David Stern stood tall at an approximate height of 5 feet 9 inches or 1.75 meters and his weight was around 74 kgs. Other than this, there is no further information regarding David’s other body measurement details like his chest-waist-hip measures, dress size, shoe size, etc. Further, David had brown eyes and grey hair color.

Talking about his social media presence, David Stern doesn’t seem to have had a personal account on any social media platforms like Twitter, Tiktok, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, etc. Nevertheless, various NBA links often share information regarding David Stern.