NEGRO LEAGUES BASEBALL MUSEUM BOB KENDRICK TO SPEAK IN LONE TREE

Traveling Exhibit “They Were All Stars” In the LTAC Lobby To Accompany Presentation

 

LONE TREE, CO – Back by popular demand, in celebration of the upcoming centennial anniversary of Negro Leagues Baseball! When Negro Leagues Baseball Museum President Bob Kendrick joined us for a pre-show talk during LTAC’s theatrical run of August Wilson’s Fences, he wowed the audience with his multimedia presentation about the history of the Negro Baseball Leagues—how players got their start, how they were treated in the league, and how they integrated into major league baseball. Bob returns on Friday, September 13 at 7pm with more stories of how the Negro Leagues changed the game of baseball, and America. In The DogHouse Food Truck will be at the Arts Center at 5:30pm to add to the baseball experience!

About Bob Kendrick

Bob Kendrick was named President of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum (NLBM) in March 2011. Founded in 1990, the NLBM is the world’s only museum dedicated to preserving and celebrating the rich history of African-American baseball and its profound impact on the social advancement of America. His appointment as President marked a celebrated return to the NLBM after a 13-month departure. He became the museum’s first Director of Marketing in 1998 and was named Vice President of Marketing in 2009 before accepting the post as Executive Director of the National Sports Center for the Disabled-Kansas City in 2010. Kendrick is responsible for the museum’s day-to-day operations and the development and implementation of strategies to advance the mission of the 501 c3, not-for-profit organization. Since rejoining the NLBM in 2011, he has helped orchestrate a nearly $10 million turnaround that has helped the NLBM regain its vitality and financial stability. 

Kendrick began his association with the NLBM as a volunteer during his 10-year newspaper career with The Kansas City Star. As senior copywriter for The Star’s Promotions Department, he won, or was part of a creative team that won, numerous local and regional advertising and marketing awards. He developed the advertising concept and campaign that helped attract more 10,000 people (in less than 30 days) to see the debut of the Museum’s first traveling exhibit in the summer of 1993. The success of that promotion led to an appointment to the museum’s Board of Directors in the fall of ‘93.

In his nearly five years on the Museum’s board, Kendrick served as Secretary/Treasurer and chaired the Membership and Event Planning committees. He was co-chairman of the Museum’s grand-opening gala celebration that attracted nearly 2,000 people to Bartle Hall in November of 1997. The event raised more than $500,000 in support of the NLBM.

Kendrick has been responsible for the creation of several signature museum educational programs and events including the Legacy Awards, a national baseball awards ceremony that annually recognizes the best Major League baseball players, managers, and executives with awards in the name and spirit of Negro League legends such as Buck O’Neil, “Cool Papa” Bell, Bullet Rogan, and Josh Gibson. And, most recently, the museum’s new Hall of Game that honors former Major League greats who played the game in the spirit and signature style of the Negro Leagues.

And while he doesn’t fashion himself to be a historian, Kendrick has become one of the leading authorities on the topic of Negro Leagues Baseball history and its connection to issues relating to sports, race, and diversity. He has been a contributing writer for Ebony Magazine and the National Urban League’s Opportunity Magazine.

In 2006, the Greater Kansas City Black Chamber of Commerce awarded him the Mary Lona Diversity Award and he was named “Citizen of the Year” by the Omicron Xi Chapter of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. In 2009, The Kansas City Globe named Kendrick to the paper’s list of “100 Most Influential African-Americans in Greater Kansas City.” In January 2014, Kendrick was inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.

A native of Crawfordville, Ga., Kendrick received a basketball scholarship to attend Park College (Parkville, Mo.) in 1980 and earned a B.A. degree in Communications Arts in 1985.

About the Negro Leagues

African-Americans began to play baseball in the late 1800s on military teams, college teams, and company teams. They eventually found their way to professional teams with white players. Moses Fleetwood Walker and Bud Fowler were among the first to participate. However, racism and “Jim Crow” laws would force them from these teams by 1900. Thus, black players formed their own units, “barnstorming” around the country to play anyone who would challenge them.

In 1920, an organized league structure was formed under the guidance of Andrew “Rube” Foster—a former player, manager, and owner for the Chicago American Giants. In a meeting held at the Paseo YMCA in Kansas City, Mo., Foster and a few other Midwestern team owners joined to form the Negro National League. Soon, rival leagues formed in Eastern and Southern states, bringing the thrills and innovative play of black baseball to major urban centers and rural country sides in the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. The Leagues maintained a high level of professional skill and became centerpieces for economic development in many black communities.

 

Related Exhibit: They Were All Stars, LTAC Lobby (FREE)

September 3 – September 16

 

Developed by the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in conjunction with Kansas City’s hosting of Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game in 2012, this exhibit chronicles players from the Negro Leagues who became Major League All-Stars. From Jackie Robinson’s breaking of the color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, until 1959 when the Boston Red Sox became the last team to integrate, 20 players from the Negro Leagues transitioned into the Majors and became All-Stars. Today, only three of that illustrious group of 20 are still alive: Hank Aaron (Indianapolis Clowns), Willie Mays (Birmingham Black Barons), and George Altman (Kansas City Monarchs). The exhibit showcases rare photos, biographical sketches, and other interesting factoids designed to give fans a greater understanding of the immediate impact that the Negro Leagues had on Major League Baseball.

 

The History of the Negro Baseball Leagues with Bob Kendrick, President of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

Friday, September 13 at 7pm

Tickets: $15 adults; $12 students

 

Tickets may be purchased by calling 720-509-1000, Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm or at www.LoneTreeArtsCenter.org.

 

This presentation is made possible in part thanks to the Scientific & Cultural Facilities District, Colorado Creative Industries, and National Endowment for the Arts. This presentation is sponsored by US Bank. CBS4 Denver is the Media Sponsor.

 

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