After celebrating the life of Henry Louis Aaron, who recently passed away at the age of 86, the Atlanta Braves organization has formally announced the formation of The Henry Louis Aaron Fund.
The purpose of the Henry Louis Aaron Fund is to provide the necessary resources to drive equity by creating access and opportunities in the areas of sports, business, education, and social and racial equality—causes Aaron constantly strived for. The Fund will live inside the Atlanta Braves Foundation and was seeded an initial $1 million.
Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association added an additional $500,000 each.
“We want to continue Hank’s amazing work in growing diversity within baseball now and in the years to come,” said Terry McGuirk, Atlanta Braves Chairman, in a written statement. “I believe this seed money is just the beginning for this growing fund and I’m certain other companies and organizations who have worked with Hank over the years will join us and add to this call to action to develop talent and increase the diversity on the field and in the front offices across the league.”
Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred Jr. also said: “Henry Aaron was a Hall of Fame player, a front office executive, a mentor, a colleague, and a friend. In each of these roles, he was a tireless advocate for better representation of people of color throughout our sport. As a philanthropist and businessman, this celebrated power hitter was most passionate about empowering others. We are proud to honor his legacy through this joint donation to the Henry Louis Aaron Fund, and commit ourselves to continue building toward greater diversity and representation in the game Hank loved dearly.”
Tony Clark, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, said, “Hank Aaron was a pioneer for social justice, civil rights, and the fight against racism who knew firsthand the importance of ensuring the game he loved was accessible to all. We share Hank’s values and commitment.”