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The Allan H. Selig Award for Philanthropic Excellence, formerly known as the Commissioner’s Award for Philanthropic Excellence, was created in 2010 to recognize the charitable and philanthropic efforts of MLB Clubs.

The Blue Jays community commitment: The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Canadian society has disproportionately affected under-resourced Canadian families who were already facing barriers in their lives. Seeing the alarming challenges youth and their families were facing in Toronto and across Canada due to COVID-19, the Blue Jays organization was determined to take immediate action.


D-Backs youth jersey program: The D-backs Give Back Youth Jersey Program is one of Major League Baseball’s most powerful and impactful Play Ball youth sports programs -- designed to grow interest and participation in baseball and softball. Each year, more than 65,000 players and coaches will “Play Ball” in donated D-backs uniforms saving leagues more than $1,000,000 annually.

COVID-19 relief efforts: The Braves COVID-19 Community Strategy included creating a Disaster & Hardship Relief Fund to provide support for displaced game-staff workers, allot funds for community investment in emergency relief efforts, allocate resources for a county-wide food security effort, as well as recognizing and supporting frontline workers.

Addressing food security in the time of COVID-19: During an unprecedented year dominated by a global pandemic which devastated the economic, social and healthcare fabric of communities across the country, the Chicago Cubs and Cubs Charities mobilized their unique resources and manpower to address the urgent challenge facing the city.

Digital divide: When COVID-19 hit, one of the most dire situations in the city of Cleveland was the digital divide. Thousands of youth in Cleveland had no way of learning remotely when schools shut down in mid-March. The Indians worked throughout 2020 to fund hotspots and tech devices for students as they worked to bridge the digital divide.

COVID-19 relief: When the global pandemic reached South Florida, the Miami Marlins and Miami Marlins Foundation launched a timely and comprehensive relief program to provide support to the South Florida community. Focus was placed on making an impact in the areas of food security, educational support, COVID-19 testing and PPE, and financial support and resources.

Nationals Food Access Program: COVID-19 response: Washington Nationals Philanthropies has long focused on increasing food access in the region. When COVID-19 hit, Nationals Philanthropies devised a plan to deliver rapid relief to the community, with food access chief among priorities. What resulted was an unprecedented collaboration that activated every part of the Nationals family -- ownership, front office, clubhouse, ballpark operations, philanthropy and fan base -- to deliver hunger relief across the region.

Previous Winners


Red Sox Scholars program creates educational opportunities for inner-city youth.


White Sox Volunteer Corps, a unique initiative designed to activate the fan base with White Sox players, executives and staff in helping give back to the greater Chicago community through service.


Toronto Blue Jays Baseball Academy, a series of initiatives that support young people by encouraging physical activity through baseball while also providing programs that offer important resources and help develop essential life skills.


Detroit Tigers Anti-Bullying program, a free, Michigan-wide educational program designed to help students and teachers manage the issue of bullying in schools.


Refuse To Abuse® Domestic Violence Prevention Program, a state-wide educational initiative, in partnership with the Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence, to promote healthy relationships and take a public stand against domestic violence.


Junior Giants program, a free, non-competitive initiative for youth, ages 5-18, that focuses on character development and baseball instruction.


The Philadelphia Phillies received the award for its commitment to supporting the fight against ALS through the “Phillies Phestival.”


The Astros Leaders Program has positively affected thousands of children in Greater Houston through baseball and softball programming, education-based initiatives and volunteer opportunities.


Texas Rangers Richard Greene Scholars has provided more than $1.2 million in college scholarships to 126 Arlington, Texas, high school students.


In philanthropic partnership with Massachusetts General Hospital, the Home Base Program is a nonprofit dedicated to providing world-class clinical care, wellness, education and research initiatives for veterans, active military service members and their families impacted by “invisible wounds,” such as post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury.

Learn more about Club programming in local communities