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Former N.O. councilman establishes scholarship in father’s name

27th August 2012   ·   0 Comments

Arnie D. Fielkow, twice elected as New Orleans Councilman-at-Large post-Katrina, recently paid a visit to his adopted hometown to launch the Jack Fielkow Memorial New Orleans Recreation Scholar­ship Fund in conjunction with Major League Baseball and New Orleans-based youth mentoring program Each One Save One. Fielkow and his family gathered in the Crescent City on Aug. 17 to announce details of a $40,000 scholarship program honoring his late father that will award two $2,000 college scholarships annually to youngsters that came up through the New Orleans recreation system, with ties to the New Orleans MLB Urban Youth Academy and/or Each One Save One annually.

After six years spent in public service helping rebuild New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Fielkow, a former member of the New Orleans Saints’ front office, returned to the business of sports when he accepted a Chicago-based position as Chief Executive Officer of the National Basketball Retired Players Assoc­iation (NBRPA). Fielkow began his position as CEO of the only retired players organization for NBA, ABA and Harlem Globe­trotters alumni in October of 2011. The recent scholarship launch coincided with the NBRPA’s Legends World Sports Conference, an annual networking event for former professional basketball players that was held in New Orleans from August 16-19.

“My father, the late Jack Fielkow, was my best friend and role model, and I am thrilled to announce this scholarship program that will memorialize his legacy for years to come,” said Fielkow, whose father died of cancer in 2011. “My dad played and loved sports, and had a special place in his heart for the passion and resiliency of New Orleanians. The entire Fielkow family is honored to bring this educational assistance program to New Orleans youth, and we couldn’t find two better youth-based programs in New Orleans than the new MLB Urban Youth Academy and Each One Save.”

“Education is an important element of the MLB Urban Youth Academies, so, we are pleased to be working closely with the Fielkow family and Each One Save One to help young men and women pursue their college degrees,” said Frank Robinson, Executive Vice President, Baseball Development, Major League Baseball. “The New Orleans MLB Urban Youth Academy will be a resource for youth in the area not only to enhance their skills as ballplayers, but also to achieve academic success.”

The Jack Fielkow Memorial New Orleans Recreation Scholarship Fund will be jointly administered annually by Major League Base­ball and Each One Save One. Scholarships will be awarded an­nually beginning in 2013 through applications evaluated by a committee that will include officials from Major League Baseball and Each One Save One.

“The Jack Fielkow Scholarship is an excellent vehicle to encourage excellence and assist financially in students’ educational achievement, which leads to career success,” said Cathy Harris, co-founder of Each One Save One. “Kudos to Arnie for his commitment to young people and for this thoughtful and generous contribution.”

The New Orleans MLB Urban Youth Academy is a $5.3 million facility located at Wesley Barrow Stadium in Pontchartrain Park that will provide free, year-round baseball and softball instruction, and additional educational programming, for underserved youth throughout Southern Louisiana. The complex includes three fields (baseball, softball and tee ball) complete with scoreboards, seating, dugouts, lights, four batting cages, an indoor facility, pitching mounds and other professional-caliber training facilities. The New Orleans facility will join Compton, Calif., Houston, Texas and Gurabo, Puerto Rico as the fourth operational MLB Urban Youth Academy.

Each One Save One, headquartered in New Orleans, La., is a non-profit organization dedicated to reversing the plight of children in the community. Founded in 1994, Each One Save One provides caring adults who commit to mentoring a child during the school year. Its mantra is simple: The Power Of One—One mentor, One child, One hour a week.

This article originally published in the August 27, 2012 print edition of The Louisiana Weekly newspaper.

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