Major League Soccer announced today that the organization Black Players for Change has been named the 2020 MLS Works Humanitarian of the Year.
Black Players for Change (BPC), founded on June 19 (Juneteenth), 2020, consists of more than 170 MLS players, coaches and staff, according to MLS's announcement. The organization strives to advance attention to human rights inequalities through initiatives that address systemic racism.
Portland Timbers forward Jeremy Ebobisse, a member of BPC's executive board, is joined by 2020 teammates Chris Duvall, Larrys Mabiala and Eryk Williamson as listed as members of BPC.
"BPC has made a significant impact in the soccer community and beyond," MLS said in today's statement. "Before kickoff of the MLS is Back Tournament opening match in July, BPC organized and led a peaceful demonstration for racial equality and human rights. During the moment of solidarity, the Black players of MLS wore custom designed (sic) T-shirts sporting the phrases 'Silence is Violence,' 'Black and Proud' and 'Black All The Time.'"
MLS also highlighted BPC's work to build 12 mini-pitches over the next year across the United States as well as the organization's initiatives around the November 3 election.
The full version of MLS's statement can be read here, on the league's web site.
Previous MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year Winners:
- 2020: Black Players for Change
- 2019: Matt Lampson (LA Galaxy)
- 2018: Matt Lampson (Minnesota United)
- 2017: Ryan Hollingshead (FC Dallas)
- 2016: Matt Lampson (Chicago Fire)
- 2015: Kei Kamara (Columbus Crew SC)
- 2014: A.J. DeLaGarza (LA Galaxy)
- 2013: Matt Reis (New England Revolution)
- 2012: Chris Seitz (FC Dallas)
- 2011: Zak Boggs (New England Revolution)
- 2010: Seth Stammler (New York Red Bulls)
- 2009: Jimmy Conrad (Kansas City Wizards); Logan Pause (Chicago Fire)
- 2008: Jose Burciaga Jr. (Colorado Rapids)
- 2007: Diego Gutierrez (Chicago Fire)
- 2006: Michael Parkhurst (New England Revolution)
- 2005: Brian Kamler (Real Salt Lake)
- 2004: Chris Henderson (Colorado Rapids)
- 2003: Ben Olsen (D.C. United)
- 2002: Steve Jolley (MetroStars)
- 2001: Tim Howard (MetroStars)
- 2000: Abdul Thompson Conteh (San Jose Earthquakes)