Diversity Committee Chair Kerrick Jackson added to ABCA Board of Directors

March 15, 2022

Kerrick JacksonKerrick Jackson, the Chair of the ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee, has been added to the Board of Directors of the American Baseball Coaches Association, effective immediately. The Board of Directors voted to amend the ABCA Constitution & By-Laws to include the Chair of the ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee as a voting member of the Board.

"I think this is one of the most significant changes to our Association in many years," said ABCA Executive Director Craig Keilitz. "Having Kerrick Jackson represent the Diversity Committee during the Executive Committee meetings and receptions during our Convention in Chicago provided such a valuable perspective and sparked new conversations in those meetings. Our Board of Directors didn't want another meeting to pass without having that perspective in the room."

Following the 2022 ABCA Convention in Chicago, the ABCA Standing Committee called for a special meeting to discuss adding the Chair of the ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee to the Board of Directors. ABCA President Rick Hitt put the motion forward, seconded by Tim Corbin, and the Board subsequently voted in favor of the amendment.

The Board of Directors, which establishes policies and governs the Association, meets twice during the College World Series in Omaha and twice during each ABCA Convention.

"This is a huge step for this organization," said Jackson. "From forming the Diversity in Baseball Committee as an official ABCA committee three years ago, to now having this appointment to the Board, this gives us a greater ability to generate interest and discussions about issues around diversity in our sport. It also gives minority coaches a new view of the organization, seeing someone who looks like them on the Board of Directors who is helping make decisions about the direction of our organization. It shows a pathway to active participation in the ABCA and being more involved in the direction of the sport."

The ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee started as a grassroots meeting during the 2019 ABCA Convention in Dallas and subsequently was formed as an official ABCA committee with two primary goals: (1) Professional Development and (2) Youth Baseball Education & Advancement. Jackson organized the initial meeting and has since served as Chair of the committee, which has held a meeting at each subsequent ABCA Convention.

The ABCA has made a concentrated effort in recent years to promote diversity among its membership. Some of those efforts include:

  • The Chair of the ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee was previously added as a position on the ABCA Executive Committee in 2021.
  • When committee positions are open, the ABCA staff ensures that minority candidates are considered, which has improved diversity among leadership positions within the ABCA.
  • The Board of Directors voted in 2020 to create a Minority Intern position at the ABCA National Office, with the goal to create an opportunity each year for a young person to gain experience within the baseball industry.
  • Now, the Board voted to amend the ABCA Constitution to add the Chair of the ABCA Diversity in Baseball Committee as a position on the Board of Directors.

Jackson has served as President of the MLB Draft League since 2020, following a three-year stint as head coach at Southern University, where he led the Jaguars from nine wins in 2018 to 32 wins and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2019. Jackson served as an assistant coach at multiple levels, including a five-year stretch at the University of Missouri where he was the first African American full-time baseball coach in both the Big XII and Southeastern Conferences (Missouri transitioned conferences during that time). He has also worked as a professional scout and player agent.

Founded in 1945, the American Baseball Coaches Association is the primary professional organization for baseball coaches at the amateur level. Its over 13,000 members represent all 50 states and 32 countries. Since its initial meeting of 27 college baseball coaches in June 1945, Association membership has broadened to NCAA Division I, II and III, NAIA, NJCAA, Pacific Association Division, High School, Youth and Travel Baseball.

 

ABCA Board of Directors

Full NameOrganizationPosition
Keith MadisonSCORE InternationalChair122272
Dave AltoppLee UniversityBoard Member121596
Duane BanksUniversity Of IowaBoard Member110734
Scott BerryMayville State UniversityBoard Member110267
Ed BlankmeyerSt. John's UniversityBoard Member109982
Jim CahillNorth Forsyth High School (GA)Board Member110694
John CaseyJohnson & Wales UniversityBoard Member110163
Tim CorbinVanderbilt UniversityBoard Member107773
Ed FlahertyUniversity Of Southern MaineBoard Member110162
Stu FritzHope CollegeBoard Member111103
Charlie GreeneMiami Dade CollegeBoard Member122260
Rob HahneWestfield High School (VA)Board Member120902
Danny HallGeorgia TechBoard Member109805
Bob HannahUniversity Of DelawareBoard Member121870
Rick HittSouth Florida State CollegeBoard Member111101
Bill HolowatyEastern Connecticut State UniversityBoard Member121601
Kerrick JacksonUniversity Of MemphisBoard Member116831
Mark JohnsonTexas A&M UniversityBoard Member111220
Dave KeilitzCentral Michigan UniversityBoard Member116755
John B. KolasinskiSiena Heights UniversityBoard Member111097
Scott LavertyChapman UniversityBoard Member121526
Rich MaloneyBall State UniversityBoard Member109816
Gene McArtorUniversity Of MissouriBoard Member121872
John McCormackFlorida Atlantic UniversityBoard Member109716
Dan McDonnellUniversity Of LouisvilleBoard Member109986
Pat McMahonNew York YankeesBoard Member121598
Tim MeadWalsh UniversityBoard Member110270
Jeff MesserSlippery Rock UniversityBoard Member111027
Matt NooneBabson CollegeBoard Member110756
Tom O'ConnellISG BaseballBoard Member109596
Tom PetroffUniversity Of Northern ColoradoBoard Member121873
Sonny PittaroRider UniversityBoard Member111057
Ron PolkMississippi State UniversityBoard Member116619
Gary PullinsBYUBoard Member121877
John SchalyAshland UniversityBoard Member110124
Jim SchlossnagleTexas A&M UniversityBoard Member109872
Kent ShelleyJohnson County Community CollegeBoard Member110000
Steve SmithDetroit TigersBoard Member109981
Bob WarnIndiana State UniversityBoard Member121878
Bob WhalenDartmouth CollegeBoard Member109854