Senator Persaud Honors Jackie Robinson's 100th Birthday During Black History Month

Today, the New York State Senate commemorated the 100th birthday of Jackie Robinson during Black History Month with a resolution introduced by Senator Roxanne J. Persaud.

On Feb. 5, the Senate adopted Resolution J366, sponsored by Senator Persaud, which honors Robinson, professional baseball player for the Brooklyn Dodgers and the first African American to play in Major League Baseball, a week after the anniversary of his 100th birthday. He is best known for breaking the color barrier in the MLB and an exceptional career in baseball.

Robinson, born on Jan. 31, 1919, joined the Dodgers in 1947 and was soon named Rookie of the Year for his extraordinary ball playing. He went on to achieve All-Star status, become the first African American player to win the Most Valuable Player Award and helped the Dodgers win their first World Series championship in franchise history.

Although Robinson retired from baseball in 1957 and died in 1972, his legacy lives on. He was the first African American to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. Additionally, the MLB retired his uniform number, which was a first for a major American sports league, and named April 15 "Jackie Robinson Day," where every player on every team wears his signature No. 42.

Senator Persaud urged her colleagues to adopt the resolution to commend Robinson and individuals like him who have contributed to the historic richness and ethnic diversity of New York, which is also where he lived while playing for the Dodgers — at 5224 Tilden Ave in Brooklyn, known today as the Jackie Robinson House and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

“In New York, Jackie Robinson is a household name, yet his impact on equality stretched beyond baseball and across the state and country. He inspired us to believe in our own abilities and respect each other regardless," Senator Persaud said. "I am delighted to commemorate the 100th birthday of fellow Brooklynite Jackie Robinson with my colleagues and hopeful his legacy will continue to inspire generations to come."

In addition to this resolution, the Senate adopted several more that honor other historic African American figures during February, recognized nationally as Black History Month.