Nichol Whiteman, Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation
For Nichol Whiteman, the mission behind what the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation does could not be more clear.
“Sports has the power to change lives,” said Whiteman, executive director of the club’s official charity. “The things we’re looking to do, they’re so much bigger than just baseball or just the Dodgers.”
And over the past half decade, the record of accomplishments for Whiteman and the Dodgers Foundation has reflected that. During that time, fundraising to the foundation has increased 1,000 percent. The organization recently broke ground on the 50th Dodgers Dreamfield, providing L.A.-area youth safe places to play, and earlier this year the foundation hit a milestone of reaching 10,000 kids through the Dodgers RBI Youth Development Program.
The foundation’s annual Blue Diamond Gala has also become one of the most star-studded events in Los Angeles each year. This year’s event in June, headlined by John Legend, raised more than $2.2 million.
“When you’re getting 3 million-plus in attendance every year and the kind of fan support we have, you have an incredible obligation and responsibility to give back to the community,” said Whiteman, whose connection to the Dodgers was forged when she was vice president and Western region officer for the Jackie Robinson Foundation.
“But what we’ve done through things like our 50/50 raffle and our various events is make support of the foundation and our community initiatives a fundamental part of the overall fan experience and synonymous with being a Dodgers fan,” she said.
— Eric Fisher