(Bloomberg) -- WNBA star Brittney Griner was among the attendees at a fundraiser for President Joe Biden on Thursday in Phoenix.
Biden introduced Griner in his remarks at the start of the event, to cheers from the audience.
The Biden administration spent months working to secure Griner’s freedom after her arrest at a Russian airport on drug possession charges. Griner, who plays for the Phoenix Mercury, was sentenced to nine years and moved to a penal colony before her release in December 2022 in a one-for-one trade for Viktor Bout, a notorious arms dealer imprisoned in the US.
Nicole Stanton, an executive at medical marijuana company Trulieve Cannabis Corp., was also among the expected attendees at the fundraiser, according to the people who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The event was being held at the home of former Arizona Democratic Party chairman Jim Pederson and his wife, Roberta, the White House said. David Tedesco, founder of health technology company Outlier, was also invited.
The event caps a western-state fundraising swing for Biden, who is headlining at least nine events this month before a Sept. 30 end-of-quarter filing deadline.
Biden on Wednesday in San Francisco attended two donor events — one hosted by Andrew McCollum, a co-founder of Meta Platforms Inc.’s Facebook and one by billionaire investor and environmental activist Tom Steyer. The president headlined four donor events last week in New York while he was there for the United Nations General Assembly.
(Updates with additional details on event, in second paragraph.)
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