Charity: Lennox's charity is The Muhammad Ali Center. PERSONAL CONNECTION: Lennox has called Muhammad Ali his "hero since the beginning" and was on hand for the 2005 dedication of the Muhammad Ali Center. The organization works to preserve Ali's legacy, but also serves as a cultural center to promote respect, hope, and understanding.
Lennox Lewis accomplished more in one boxing career than most people can imagine. His decision to retire as the reigning heavyweight champion of the world in 2004 re-affirmed that this is a man who makes decisions for himself and sticks to his principles.
Before turning pro, Lewis held an impressive amateur record of 85 wins, which he capped with a gold medal at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Lennox earned the medal for Team Canada by defeating another future world heavyweight champion, Riddick Bowe.
After turning professional in 1989, Lewis went on to gain the European title in 1990 and the British Commonwealth Heavyweight title in 1992. He was officially crowned the WBC Heavyweight Champion in January of 1993. In 1999, he became the Undisputed Heavyweight Champion of the World, winning the WBC, WBA, IBO and IBF titles. Along with Muhammad Ali and Evander Holyfield, Lennox makes up a legendary trio of boxers who have captured the heavyweight championship on three separate occasions. The crowning moment in his career came in June 2002 when Lewis ceremoniously defeated Mike Tyson. His 2002 fight remained the highest grossing pay-per-view fight for five years.
Lewis's athletic accomplishments have made him a beloved figure around the world. He was honored by his home country of England when Queen Elizabeth II awarded him a Commander in the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE). The CBE is an esteemed honor for a British citizen as it is one rank below knighthood.
In February 2004, Lewis retired being only the third boxer in history to retire as champion and subsequently refuse to return to the ring. His scientific approach to boxing along with a stiff left jab and blistering overhand right has secured his place as the preeminent boxer of his generation.
Lewis can now be seen regularly on HBO's Boxing After Dark providing expert commentary for major boxing events. When he's not calling fights or with his growing family, Lewis keeps busy with business ventures and charitable projects. In addition to his work with various youth athletic programs, Lewis, a well known Chess enthusiast, sponsors student chess teams and volunteers to promote the sport at opportunities around the world. Lewis is also a major contributor to the Muhammad Ali Center, an organization committed to finding peaceful solutions to global problems, and has recently lent his talent and expertise to a new Canadian athletic center in honor of his amateur boxing coach, Arnie Boehm.