MLB to hold on-field recognition of Jackie Robinson Day on Friday

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Dodgers and Dodgers Foundation (LADF) will celebrate Jackie Robinson’s life and legacy with online programs this week leading up to Major League Baseball’s on-field observance of Jackie Robinson Day on Friday. August 28 marks the date in 1945 when Jackie Robinson first met with Dodger President Branch Rickey in his Brooklyn office, as Rickey sought to sign the Majors’ first Black player.

The Dodgers will play at Texas on Friday, but will celebrate Jackie Robinson and his lasting impact on society with virtual activations throughout the week:

Tuesday:  LADF will host a conversation with Dodger First Base Coach George Lombard at 10:00 a.m., moderated by Marti Reed from the Positive Coaching Alliance. Lombard will share his story – from his family history of Civil Rights activism to his unique path through college and the Majors. Jackie Robinson Foundation/Dodgers Foundation Scholars will participate in the conversation.

Wednesday: The Dodgers will host a virtual panel at 2:00 p.m. for students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities to illustrate the different career paths available within the sport of baseball. Naomi Rodriguez, Dodger Vice President of Community Relations and External Affairs will open the event with a welcome and overview of Jackie Robinson’s legacy for the student attendees at Hampton University, Howard University, Morehouse College, North Carolina A&T State University and Spelman College. The event panelists include Nichol Whiteman, CEO Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation (Spelman College alumna), Melanie LeGrande, Vice President of Social Responsibility – Major League Baseball (Morgan State University alumna), David Hill, Sr. Analyst, Dodgers Baseball Performance Science (Morehouse College alumnus),Albert Gilbert, Coordinator, Dodgers Baseball Operations (Stanford University/Harvard Law School alumnus) and Tahlor Cleveland, Dodgers Coordinator, Planning & Development (UC San Diego alumna).

Fans are invited to view on Dodgers’ Facebook Live, and media interested in joining can email the Dodgers’ PR department for login credentials.

Thursday: LADF will continue its Virtual Coaches Training Series presented by Nike at 5:00 p.m. with former Dodger Chase Utley as the guest speaker. In addition to sharing his thoughts on coaching young athletes, Utley will reflect on Robinson’s legacy and their shared path from UCLA to the Dodgers. The training will also feature Megan Bartlett, Founder of We Coach, which offers coaches important resources in the areas of sports-based youth development, trauma-informed sport, and girls in sport. Coaches and parents from LADF’s sports-based youth development program, Dodgers RBI, will participate, along with Dodgers RBI program partners, local school districts and other youth development professionals.  

The Los Angeles Dodgers franchise, with six World Series championships and 22 National League pennants since its beginnings in Brooklyn in 1890, is committed to a tradition of pride and excellence.  The Dodgers are dedicated to supporting a culture of winning baseball, providing a first-class, fan-friendly experience at Dodger Stadium, and building a strong partnership with the community. With the highest cumulative fan attendance in Major League Baseball history, and a record of breaking barriers, the Dodgers are one of the most cherished sports franchises in the world. Visit the Dodgers online at, follow them on Twitter @Dodgers and like them on Facebook For media information, visit

About the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation:

ESPN’s Sports Humanitarian Team of the Year, the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation is bigger than baseball with ambitions to be the city’s premier charity.  We envision a city where everyone regardless of zip code has the opportunity to thrive.  We are tackling the most pressing problems facing Los Angeles with a mission to improve education, health care, homelessness and social justice for all Angelenos. Since 1995, we have invested more than $30 million in programs and grants to nonprofits, and fundraising has increased by 1,000% since 2012. That growth has enabled us to do more.   

Visit LADF online at, follow them on Twitter, @DodgersFdn,  Instagram, @dodgersfoundation, and like them on Facebook at