Joe Maddon


Joe Maddon, manager of Major League Baseball’s 2016 World Series-winning Chicago Cubs, returned one year to his hometown of Hazleton, Pennsylvania, as he does every off-season, and “didn’t recognize the place.” Passage of a controversial immigration ordinance sparked rancorous demonstrations, dividing the local cultures and pitting whites against Hispanics. Maddon brought parents and kids together to integrate Hazleton’s Little League, turning the town into a baseball powerhouse. He and other community leaders founded the Hazleton Integration Project (HIP), where hundreds of kids are enrolled in activities from after-school study groups to basketball teams, martial arts instruction and debate clubs. His experience as the grandchild of Italian immigrants, the child of a hardworking coal-miner and his intuitive understanding of how sports teach people to work together across multiple divides, motivated him to give back to the hometown he loves.

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