Through the Community and Public Affairs Department, the Pirates seek to expand current and develop new community relationships with members of minority communities and with others that share the same commitment to those communities. Through philanthropic contributions and the personal involvement of our employees, we strive to support our communities and enhance the quality of life of all who live in Pittsburgh and its surrounding areas. We embrace the concepts of teamwork and partnership in all we do. As a committed partner with the community in which we reside, we recognize that our success is rooted in its economic, cultural and ethnic diversity.
The Pirates are proud to have organized a number of minority partnership events. The Pirates community service, corporate contributions, and involvement in community-wide programs are based on the recognition that our strength as an organization depends on the well-being of the communities in which we live.
The 2014 Pittsburgh Pirates African American Heritage Celebration at PNC Park was held on Friday, June 27 and Saturday, June 28.
This annual event captures the essence of the Pirates community efforts and highlights the contributions of African Americans in Pittsburgh.
The celebration included a weekend of promotions and special events that focused on honoring and recognizing African Americans in baseball while celebrating the African American culture in our community.
The Friday, June 27 game included an informational street fair on Federal Street with various African American organizations passing out information. The Pirates also presented the "Pittsburgh Pirates Community Champion Awards" in a pre-game ceremony.
During the Saturday, June 28 game, the Pirates wore the uniforms of the Negro League Pittsburgh Crawfords and the visiting Mets wore the Negro League Brooklyn Royal Giants team uniforms.
The Pirates and the Josh Gibson Foundation also awarded $2,000 continuing education student scholarships in a pre-game ceremony. The recipients, shown in the photos below, were Amber Ligget and Shelton Claybourn.
For more information about the Pirates African American Heritage Celebration, please contact Chaz Kellem at (412) 325-4731.
Throughout the Pittsburgh Pirates history, there have been many champions - on and off the field. Players like Andrew McCutchen, Willie Stargell and Roberto Clemente have thrilled Pirates fans with their baseball achievements. They also supported their communities in many ways by showing character and integrity in all aspects of their lives.
Nominations for the 2015 Pirates Community Champion Awards are now open. The award will be granted to six (6) local individuals who have had a positive impact on African-Americans in Pittsburgh by being a 'champion' in the community. This award is designed to recognize individuals who on a daily basis are impacting individuals or making a difference in the community.
The 2014 Community Champion Awards winners (from left to right in the photo below with Pirates President Frank Coonelly) are: Dr. Yinka Aganga-Williams, AJAPO; Phyllis Comer, Comer Educational Consulting Services; Larry V. Jones, Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania; Keith B. Key, KBK Enterprises; La'Tasha D. Mayes, New Voices Pittsburgh; Michael Anthony Morris, Camp Enrichment.
For more information about the Pirates Community Champion Awards, please contact Chaz Kellem at (412) 325-4731.
The Pittsburgh Pirates hosted their annual Diversity Networking Reception on February 3, 2015 at the Rivertowne Brewing Hall of Fame Club located at PNC Park. The event allowed for business professionals from the Greater Pittsburgh Area to not only network, but also learn how they can help one another with their business endeavors.
A variety of organizations were present at the reception, including Ford, the PPG Zoo and Aquarium, UPMC, PNC Bank and many others. Pittsburgh Pirates representatives were there as well, including the President of the organization, Frank Coonelly, who gave a brief speech on the team and diversity as a whole.
Throughout the event, guests were given the opportunity to interact with Pirates officials and the Pirate Parrot. Guests were also able to enjoy complimentary food and non-alcoholic beverages, as well as a cash bar. The evening was an overall success, ending with a Business Card Raffle, in which the Pirates gave away many prizes, including game tickets and player autographed items. The reception was an excellent opportunity for community members to interact with one another on a more casual level and work on succeeding in their career goals.
Highmark, Davis Vision Inc., United Concordia, Tickets for Kids and the Pittsburgh Pirates team up to provide free vision and dental screenings and complimentary Pirates game tickets to local youth. More than 120 local youth who do not currently have health insurance or have minimal insurance coverage received a FREE vision and dental screening at PNC Park on July 23, 2014.
Davis Vision eye-care professionals volunteer their time to bring this important service to the community, ensuring all children receive the vision and dental care they need. For children in need of follow-up services after the initial screening, a voucher is provided for a complimentary eye examination and a free pair of eyeglasses from Total Vision Care. In addition, dental and hygiene professionals will volunteer their time to provide dental check-ups and oral hygiene education.
One of the most significant moments in Major League Baseball history was when Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier on April 15, 1947. In celebration of the anniversary of this momentous event, the Pittsburgh Pirates hosted the annual Jackie Robinson Art, Essay and Poetry Contest. The contest, which is open to students in grades three through eight in the Pirates market area, challenges students to create an art piece, poem or essay about Robinson's nine values for success. The contest began in December 2014 and concluded in March 2015, with over 3,800 entries submitted.
The Pirates, the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Area Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the Pittsburgh Hispanic Development Corporation hosted an evening of Hispanic celebration in the Keystone Corner (Club level) at PNC Park on May 4, 2014. The night included Latin food, music and dancing as well as an opportunity to mingle with Pirates players, coaches, and front office executives. Attendees were asked to bring a new piece of baseball or softball equipment to be donated to the Roberto Clemente Sports Complex in Puerto Rico via the P-squared Project.
The Pittsburgh Pirates recognize the good business sense and added value gained by doing business with minority and women-owned business enterprises (MWBEs).
The directors of the Community Development and Purchasing Departments are dedicated to identifying qualified MWBEs who offer high-quality, cost-competitive goods and services, and matching them with the needs of the company. The Community Development Director actively seeks MWBEs through trade shows, advertising in local and national media, and working with business and advocacy groups.
The Pirates are an active corporate member of several organizations that are dedicated to fostering minority business development, including the Pittsburgh Regional Minority Purchasing Council, the African American Chamber of Commerce and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
Throughout the long history of baseball in America, the Pirates organization and its employees have formed powerful partnerships for positive change in the black baseball world that stretched from the Pacific to the Caribbean.
Pittsburgh in the past was headquarters for the Negro National League and the only city in the country with two Black Professional Teams, the Homestead Grays and the Pittsburgh Crawfords.
Pittsburgh fielded an array of stars -- Josh Gibson, Cool Papa Bell, Satchel Paige, Buck Leonard and others -- unrivaled in the city's rich sporting past, and the Pirates are committed to continuing to share the legacy of the Negro Leagues with Pirates fans of all ages and backgrounds.
The program has continued to grow. In 2007, Pirates Charities, in its first official act, partnered with the Roberto Clemente Foundation and the Baseball Tomorrow Fund to renovate a portion of the Shadyside Boys & Girls Club facility to build a home for Pittsburgh RBI. The Pirates Community Baseball Center was officially opened in February of 2007. It features indoor batting cages, pitching machines and meeting rooms that can be used by Pittsburgh RBI's volunteer coaches. ALL Pittsburgh RBI participants have free-of-charge access to the Pirates Community Baseball Center and can use the facility to work on their baseball skills year round.