Jackie Robinson's perseverance throughout times of adversity is what motivates me as a leader. As I truly honor all of his accomplishments, the fight and grit that he possessed is what inspires me most as I seek to fight for racial equity in our society.
The Detroit Tigers celebrate Jackie Robinson Day by partnering with RISE. RISE is a national nonprofit that educates and empowers the sports community to eliminate racial discrimination, champion social justice and improve race relations. We asked high school students in the RISE program what inspires them most about Jackie's life as they strive to be a leader for racial equity and social justice.
The opportunity to speak on a man I have admired since I was a child is such a great privilege. Jackie Robinson's accomplishments were such barrier breakers and inspire me to set goals that I should strive to reach for in my own life. With him showing up and dominating through adversity, I know that anything is possible.
Jackie Robinson was a game changer. In the life he lived, he achieved so many accomplishments, but while he worked towards those accomplishments he had some challenges he had to face. I am glad to speak on such a powerful and impactful man because he has opened my mind to have a desire for something and to fulfill it.
Jackie Robinson's perseverance through the racial injustice he faced is what motivates me everyday. There will always be those trying to hold me back but Robinson taught me to fight and prove me them wrong.
What inspires me about Jackie Robinson and his story is the leadership that he showed during his time. For example, he inspired black people and many other races to push towards what you want to do no matter the hate that others are giving you. I also look at Jackie Robinson being a survivor. He took on a lot of hate and discrimination just to become a baseball player. Jackie Robinson doing what he did, fighting just to let black people play baseball is astonishing to me and pushes me more to work towards my career.
Jackie Robinson inspired me to become a young activist for my community. I recently just created a blog about self-love and healing. It was brought to my attention that there are more topics to discuss in the black community. So, I am transitioning into speaking up about generational curse, toxic masculinity and police brutality. Jackie has inspired me to advocate for the black community to do better.
What inspires me most about Jackie Robinson’s life was his fight through adversity. As a leader, you will often be faced with conflict affecting your goals. Jackie Robinson took those challenges and pushed through them to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball and create opportunities for people of color worldwide. This makes me strive for racial equity and social justice despite the unjust and divided world we live in.
I think what inspires me most from Jackie Robinson is to be brave and take the right action when talking about racial equality and social justice. Even if you are the only one doing it.
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Billy Bean serves at MLB as Vice-President & Special Assistant to the Commissioner and his role focuses on baseball’s social responsibility initiatives and LGBTQ+ inclusion. The Out100 list recognizes members of the LGBTQ+ community for their groundbreaking, ripple-inducing, and culture-shifting impact around the world. Honorees were recognized virtually this year.
Bean broke into the big leagues with the Detroit Tigers, and tied a major-league record with four hits in his first game. Billy is a member of the MLB Owner's Diversity and Inclusion Committee and was instrumental in the development of MLB's 'Shred Hate' bullying prevention program, a ground breaking educational youth campaign and partnership with ESPN. He is also the author of the book, "Going the Other Way."
The organizations listed may or may not be partners of the Detroit Tigers. This is for informational purposes only.
LGBTQ Community Resources
- NAACP Legal Defense Fund
- Rainbow PUSH Coalition
- MLB - Diversity & Inclusion
- Detroit Urban League
- The Bail Project
Black Owned Business Resources
- Booker T. Washington Business Association
- Black Owned Businesses in Detroit
- Michigan Minority Supplier Diversity Council