By OnMilwaukee Staff Writers   Published Jan 18, 2012 at 4:18 PM

Today, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton named former Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as a global cultural ambassador.

Abdul-Jabbar provided this statement on his website, "I am honored to have been chosen to represent my country as a Global Cultural Ambassador. My first assignment will be in Brazil, a country that I’m thrilled to visit. The culture there is so vibrant and engaging. I’m a big jazz fan and Brazilian jazz is a very popular part of the nation's cultural profile. I think I’ll get a chance to sample some of the current jazz on this trip. And of course there’s basketball. I’ll be involved putting on some clinics for the local hoopsters! All in all this is going to be a fun and exciting trip both educationally and culturally."

Abdul-Jabbar was in Milwaukee last May to screen his documentary "On the Shoulders of Giants."  His new book, "What Color Is My World?: The Lost History of African-American Inventors," was released Jan. 3.