University of Maryland Award Will Honor Sports Journalists Who Work for Racial Equality

Wendell Smith
Wendell Smith

The University of Maryland has announced the establishment of the Lacy-Smith Award. The honor will be bestowed upon a sports journalist or broadcaster who has “made significant contributions to racial and gender equality in sports.”

The award is named for Sam Lacy and Wendell Smith, two African American journalists who documented Jackie Robinson’s effort to racially integrate Major League Baseball. Sam Lacy wrote for the Baltimore Afro-American and Wendell Smith was a writer for the Pittsburgh Courier.

George Solomon, director of the Shirley Povich Center for Sports Journalism at the University of Maryland stated that Lacy and Smith “worked tirelessly over the years, writing, lobbying, and cajoling Major League Baseball owners, many of the resistant, into trying to see the importance of integration to the future of not only the sport of baseball but to the country.”

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