Congressman Cohen to Participate in Civil Rights Movement Roundtable at NCRM

March 26, 2007
Press Release

Memphis, TN -- Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-9) will join a group of past and present major league baseball pioneers as a panelist on the "Baseball and the Civil Rights Movement" roundtable, 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, March 30 at the National Civil Rights Museum, 450 Mulberry St. in Memphis.

The roundtable discussion is a part of the activities surrounding Major League Baseball’s inaugural Civil Rights Game between the World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals and the Cleveland Indians at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, March 31 at Memphis’ Autozone Park.

Moderated by Harvard Law School professor and race and justice expert Charles Ogletree, the other discussion panelists include Pete Gammons, Baseball Hall of Fame honoree and ESPN analyst; Lou Melendez, 25-year baseball veteran and vice-president of international baseball operations; Branch Rickey, III, president of the Pacific Coast League and grandson of baseball executive Branch Rickey who signed players Jackie Robinson and Roberto Clemente; Kenneth Shropshire, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania professor and author; Claire Smith, assistant sports editor for the Philadelphia Inquirer and former New York Times writer who was one of the first female baseball writers in the 1980s; Bill White, four-time major league baseball all-star, former National League president and first African-American major league broadcaster and African-American to hold a high-level executive position in professional sports; Ken Williams, Chicago White Sox general manager; and Dave Winfield, hall of fame outfielder and vice president of the San Diego Padres.

Congressman Cohen, a lifelong baseball fan, sponsored the recently-passed House Resolution 162 honoring Negro baseball leagues and their players. Congressman Cohen said, "It is only proper to recognize those who contributed so much to the sport but who were not permitted to play in the major leagues because of racial discrimination."

The "Baseball and the Civil Rights Movement" roundtable discussion is free and open to the public, but reservations are required. For reservations, please call the National Civil Rights Museum at (901) 521-9699.

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Marilyn Dillihay, Press Secretary, (202) 225-3265