Alumni Spotlight: Noni Robinson

Alumni Spotlight: Noni Robinson


Lincoln University Alumni Spotlight on Noni Robinson | A Journey of Sports Success

Growing up in her family’s proud legacy at Lincoln as a third-generation graduate made attending Lincoln University an obvious choice for Noni Robinson. But that wasn’t enough; she wanted more than just academic success. Her story is one of grit and determination.

Noni-Robinson-pic-2.jpg The Robinson legacy is a living testament to the profound impact of a Lincoln University education. Noni proudly carries on her family's commitment to learning, which began when her mother, Carol A. Anderson-Lewis, enrolled in Project Management at Lincoln University (LU) in the 1960s. Her uncle Raymond R. Patterson then put LU on the map yet again by becoming Poet-Professor Emeritus at City College Of New York. At the same time, her uncle John T. Patterson took his success one step further, establishing The Patterson Company – Wall Street’s first-ever Black-owned stock firm.

With such an inspiring history behind them, it’s no surprise that the road to higher education was firmly paved for Robinson, who built upon each relative’s impressive legacy. 

From left to right: John T. Patterson, Carol A Anderson-Lewis, Raymond R. Patterson  Noni-Robinson-pic-3.jpg


Noni was passionate about health-related areas such as nutrition, wellness, and sports while completing her Health Science degree in 1995. She earned degrees in both Nutritional Science and Community Nutrition with an international fellowship in Ghana that included taking daughter Imani along for the trip of a lifetime!

Noni's journey in health and wellness eventually took her to Baltimore, where she had the unique opportunity to create specialized meal plans for a Washington Wizard basketball rookie. For three years, this experience allowed Noni and her clients.

Noni’s grandparents (John & Mildred Patterson), uncle (Raymond Patterson), and mother, Carol Patterson, attend Raymond’s Lincoln University's graduation ceremony in 1952

Families to grow closer.

“I did this for three years, and my client base grew,” she said. “And naturally, when you are in the kitchens of most families, you hear a lot of personal things that are going on with families… We would chat around food, and food always brings people together.”

In this way, Robinson became an established and trusted confidante in the sports community, so it seemed natural for her to expand into a business that would allow her to have more influence on athletes’ lives.

In 2010 she founded Robinson Nutrition Group, ultimately leading to her branching out as an agent. With players entering new environments surrounded by people who may not always have their best interests at heart, Noni's expertise became integral in helping athletes learn how to navigate points of change and make informed decisions about their futures beyond the court.

“I took the test to become an agent for the NBA, the WNBA, and FIBA (International Basketball Federation), which means I represent those players,” she said. “So I'm still in the health and wellness space in terms of my business, but now I'm building the sports agency business to represent women and men who play basketball, hopefully.”

At the age of 50, Noni is more motivated and driven than ever to have a positive effect on others. She attributes her success in business ventures such as brand development, intellectual property licensing, and strategic partner contracting to Lincoln University's diverse education, which gave her skills that have been highly transferable throughout her career.

Though it was not always easy for young people like herself who wished to focus their studies on health-related fields or sports – a path which she has now paved with great success – Noni remains passionate about giving back by helping other LU students realize that these same opportunities exist for them, too.

In addition to her work, she has embarked on exciting new projects with her daughter, who seems to have the same determination and creativity as her mother. After graduating from college, Imani Robinson immersed herself in the world of screenwriting.

“She even wrote her own story because she wanted to create, act and produce her own,” said Noni, who served as the executive producer of her daughter’s TV pilot called Three Blind Mice, which is about the friendships Noni made at Lincoln University.

“It’s been an amazing experience…and it all started through my interest in health and wellness,” Noni said. “And I’m still able to offer those services. My goal is to have a full-service sports management agency that provides health and wellness, mental health, investment planning, brand development, and planning for life after basketball. Many [players] run out of money when they’re young and have an entourage of family and friends who may want their money.  And I ensure they’re protected fully because they’re often not protected.”

The legacies of the Patterson family, rooted in their experience with Lincoln, have been an incredible blessing across generations. With its foundation being a catalyst for personal accomplishment and change-making around them, they genuinely inspire all.