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Ep. 7 - Homegrown baller Joe Ellis on growing up in Oakland and playing for the Warriors

Dean's Cards / Bo Walsh / KALW News
Joe Ellis grew up in Oakland and attended the University of San Francisco before playing for the Warriors.

Portland Trail Blazers guard and East Oakland native Damian Lillard recently returned to Oracle Arena to face off against the Golden State Warriors in the same building where he grew up cheering for them. 

The long legacy of NBA players that have come out of Oakland goes back more than half a century and includes all-time greats such as Bill Russell, Gary Payton, and Jason Kidd. In the late '60s and early '70s, one former ballplayer from Oakland played for the Warriors. His name was Joe Ellis. 

"We weren't transferring back and forth across the Bay like they are today. People from San Francisco generally didn't go to Oakland, and people from Oakland didn't come to San Francisco, so it just gave people on that side a chance to follow me a little more closely."

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Ben joined KALW in 2004. As Executive News Editor and then News Director, he helped the news department win numerous regional and national awards for long- and short-form journalism. He also helped teach hundreds of audio producers, many of whom work with him at KALW, today.