Recipients of the 2019 Yankees-Stonewall scholarships were announced on Wednesday, May 22nd at The Stonewall Inn. The initiative commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and celebrates the achievements of New York City Public School seniors who have demonstrated academic achievement and impactful support for the LGBTQ community.
“After this announcement, I am positive that LGBTQ folks—not just in the five boroughs, but, because of this historic partnership—all over the country will feel less isolated and more accepted,” Stacey Lentz, founder of the Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative and co-owner of the Stonewall Inn, said during the press event. “The fight that started here in this very place in 1969? It’s not over; it’s not done. But, what I can tell you, after having the privilege of meeting the 26 scholars and the finalists and hearing their stories—their struggles, their triumphs, their inspiration, and their aspirations—there is a younger, up-and-coming generation that is going to make sure that every LGBTQ person in every state, every country, and of every identity under the LGBTQIA rainbow umbrella has full equality.”
The announcement was made by a number of speakers, including Yankees President Randy Levine, Yankees Senior Vice President and General Manager Brian Cashman, Yankees Senior Vice President and Assistant General Manager Jean Afterman, Yankees Senior Vice President of Corporate/Community Relations Brian Smith, The Stonewall Inn Co-Owner and Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative CEO Stacy Lentz, Chancellor of the New York City Department of Education Richard Carranza, and First Lady of New York City Chirlane McCray.
The Yankees-Stonewall partnership provided $50,000 in scholarships, split between five $10,000 awards to be presented to one student from each New York City’s five boroughs. Nominations for the awards were initiated by the New York City Department of Education (DOE), with each high school able to submit one graduating senior for consideration.
The process for nominated students took about a month, beginning with panel review and ending with in-person interviews with the narrowed-down pool of applicants. Members of the review panel included representatives from the Yankees, the Office of the Mayor, the NYC Unity Project, the DOE, and The Stonewall Inn.
Recipients of the Yankees-Stonewall scholarship will also be highlighted at Yankee Stadium during a pregame commemoration on Tuesday, June 25th. The ceremony will recognize the impact and contributions of the LGBTQ community and shine a spotlight on the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising.