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All-City Spirit Of Long Beach Award: Activist Athletes

As 2020 rapidly became a year for the history books, with a global pandemic eventually sharing the spotlight with civil unrest across the globe, sports was asked to take a back seat this year. Yet even with no games to play, Long Beach’s athletes didn’t fade into the background, but instead came forward in the community to speak out for change. We applaud the efforts of Long Beach’s sports figures to have their voices heard and honor them with the 2020 Spirit of Long Beach Award.

As protests for racial justice spread across the nation and eventually reached Long Beach, several athletes took to the streets while others took to social media to use their platform in a fight for change. Professional athletes like Jordan Bell, Iman Marshall, and Sherridan Atkinson were out on the streets of Long Beach, joining protesters and aiding in relief efforts following the looting across the city. 

In the weeks after the large-scale protests, athletes continued to get involved. Wilson junior cross country runner Trevor Davis-Dressner ran 24 miles in 24 hours to raise money for Black Lives Matter Los Angeles. The community involvement wasn’t just limited to protesting or fighting for racial justice, however. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, former Poly football players Raymond Graham and brothers Cameron and Nolan McDonald organized donations of food and supplies to members of the community in need, and plan to start a non-profit to continue those efforts.

Without sporting events taking place for a large portion of 2020, Long Beach’s athletes have shown that they are more than just athletes, and they care deeply about their community. That’s the spirit of Long Beach.’s All-City Athletes of the Year

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Tyler Hendrickson
Tyler Hendrickson was born and raised in Long Beach, and started covering sports in his hometown in 2010. After five years as a sportswriter, Tyler joined the athletic department at Long Beach State University in 2015. He spent more than four years in the athletic communications department, working primarily with the Dirtbags baseball program. Tyler also co-authored of The History of Long Beach Poly: Scholars & Champions.