SOURCE: The Jackie Robinson Foundation

September 05, 2007 16:00 ET

The Jackie Robinson Foundation Second Annual Jazz on the Grass Set for September 15th

Lalah Hathaway, Patti Austin and Dave Koz Headline Star-Studded Bill; Proceeds to Benefit College Scholarships and Mentoring

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwire - September 5, 2007) - Decorated jazz artists Lalah Hathaway, Patti Austin and Dave Koz will perform at the second annual Jackie Robinson Foundation (JRF) benefit Jazz on the Grass on Saturday, September 15 in Sherman Oaks, Calif. The Jazz on the Grass benefit raises money for the Jackie Robinson Foundation Education and Leadership Development Program, which provides four-year college scholarships and mentoring to academically distinguished minority students.

The Jazz on the Grass benefit will take place from 1pm until 6pm at the home of Lynne and Oz Scott, renowned sculptor and famed director.

Sharon Robinson, JRF Vice Chair and Jackie Robinson's daughter, Dodgers legend "Sweet Lou" Johnson and JRF Los Angeles Advisory Committee Member and former Yankees and Dodgers pitcher Al Downing will co-host the event, featuring an all-star cast of performers including Patti Austin, Kathryn Bostic, Lalah Hathaway, Dave Koz, Clarence McDonald, Marcus Miller, Byron Motley, Kenny Rankin, Sylvester Rivers and Sonya & Phil Upchurch. The event is made possible by a group of sponsors who share the Foundation's commitment to "opportunity through education" including City National Bank, Disney, Hennessy, Alaska Airlines, Barefoot Wines, CBS Paramount, Nordstrom, Pepsi, Toyota, UCLA, Union Bank of California and Washington Mutual.

Jazz has played a significant and iconic role in Jackie Robinson's legacy. Inspired by the March on Washington, Jackie and Rachel Robinson organized a jazz concert in 1963 to raise bail money for jailed freedom fighters. The original concert series, set in the New York metropolitan area, became a signature JRF event, attracting some of the most recognizable jazz artists of the day including such venerable names as Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie. The Foundation unveiled the inaugural Jazz on the Grass last fall to bring the jazz tradition to Los Angeles.

Nicolette Robinson, a JRF Scholar attending UCLA and sponsored by the Los Angeles Dodgers, will perform. Robinson is an aspiring actress who has already landed starring roles on major shows including CBS' CSI. She performed "God Bless America" live at Dodgers Stadium for Jackie Robinson Day on April 15, 2007. The performance was broadcast on ESPN as part of the 60th anniversary commemorations of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in baseball.

Popular radio-host Pat Prescott of 94.7 The Wave will serve as mistress of ceremonies for a second consecutive year. Sylvester Rivers will return as the event's musical director. The event comes as the Foundation prepares to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Dodgers move to Los Angeles. For tickets or additional information, please call Nichol Whiteman in the Foundation's Los Angeles office at (213) 330-7711.

ABOUT THE JACKIE ROBINSON FOUNDATION

Established in 1973, the Jackie Robinson Foundation (JRF) is one of the nation's premier education and leadership development programs. It provides four-year college scholarships to minority students who demonstrate academic distinction, leadership capacity and financial need. Transcending financial assistance, the Foundation equips its scholarship recipients with a comprehensive set of support services including mentoring, career guidance and practical life skills, resulting in a 97% graduation rate, more than twice the national average for minority students. The nearly 1,200 JRF alumni are both leaders in their professional fields and consummate ambassadors of Jackie's legacy of public service. For more information, please visit www.jackierobinson.org.

Contact Information

  • Contacts:

    Primary:
    Gary Schueller
    (212) 290-8600
    (914) 907-2169

    Secondary:
    Marissa Medina
    (310) 444-7032