In recognition of Pride Month, the New York Yankees today announced that for the second straight year, the Yankees-Stonewall Scholars Initiative has awarded scholarships to five New York City Public School seniors who have demonstrated academic achievement, a commitment to equality and impactful support for the LGBTQ community.
The initiative provides $50,000 worth of scholarships through five $10,000 college scholarships to be presented to one student from each of the five boroughs of New York City. The scholarships are intended to allow these students the resources to fulfill their educational and career goals.
For the second consecutive year, the selection process was conducted by the New York City Department of Education in partnership with representatives from the Yankees, Stonewall Inn, New York City Mayor’s Office, Major League Baseball, and Athlete Ally.
The recipients of the 2020 Yankees-Stonewall scholarships are Tamia “Tee” Barnard (Bronx) of the High School for Law, Advocacy and Community Justice located in Manhattan; Lauren Hidalgo (Queens) of Francis Lewis High School; Cole Neufeld (Manhattan) of Bard High School Early College Manhattan; and non-publicly identified students from Brooklyn and Staten Island.
In lieu of an on-field pregame ceremony at Yankee Stadium, the students were congratulated via Zoom chat on Monday, June 1, by Yankees Senior Vice President and General Manager Brian Cashman; Yankees Senior Vice President of Corporate/Community Relations Brian Smith; Stonewall Inn Co-Owner and Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative CEO Stacy Lentz; Stonewall Inn Co-Owner Kurt Kelly; Chancellor of the New York City Department of Education Richard Carranza; New York City Department of Education Special Assistant to the Chancellor Juan Rosales; and New York City Department of Education Manager of LGBTQ Programs Eric Vaughan. Please find highlights of their conversation at the following link:
“It was an honor to meet with so many bright young people, and it gave a lot of hope to me, especially with what is going on in the world today,” Cashman said. “It’s clear that our five scholarship recipients will be agents of change as we continue along the path of making the world a safer, more accepting and inclusive place. Congratulations for standing out among a truly inspiring group of individuals. We also want to thank the Stonewall Inn for paving the way for so many. We hope to connect what it stands for with the voice of the Yankees organization to empower young people toward lives of meaningful action and change.”
“I am in awe of and inspired by these young people. This scholarship recognizes and celebrates our students for their contributions to their school communities and a commitment to a brighter, more inclusive future,” Schools Chancellor Carranza said. “Thank you to the New York Yankees and Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative, who are helping us honor these students who demonstrate the power of embracing your identity and using your voice to create change.”
“We are thrilled to once again partner with the New York Yankees to provide much needed financial assistance to some of New York’s best and brightest LGBTQ students,” Kelly said.
“We are creating the future leaders of the LGBTQ community and helping ensure that they have access to education so they can continue to make an impact for our community,” Lentz said.
The Yankees-Stonewall Scholars Initiative was created in September 2018 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Inn Uprising and celebrate the achievements of New York City Public School students.
On May 22, 2019, the Yankees, along with the Stonewall Inn and New York City Department of Education, presented the initial class of five graduating seniors with scholarship awards at a ceremony at the Stonewall Inn, which is frequently considered the birthplace of the modern LGBTQ movement. The inaugural winners were: Francheska Colon of the Bronx, Ashley Farrell of Staten Island, Hugh Goldstein of Queens, Alex Rosado of Manhattan, and a non-publicly identified student from Brooklyn.
The following month, on June 25, 2019, the Yankees invited the seniors to participate in a multi-faceted Yankee Stadium celebration of New York’s legacy of pride and the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Inn Uprising. Commemorations recognized the impact and contributions of the greater LGBTQ community and called attention to WorldPride 2019, which took place in New York City. Additionally, the Yankees added a permanent plaque to Monument Park to recognize the events of the day and the inclusive spirit of Yankee Stadium.