Eli Lilly, Cannon Baller Foundation join forces

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 6, 2023

KANNAPOLIS — Eli Lilly will be the presenting sponsor of the Cannon Baller Foundation in efforts to give back to the community and foster improvements around Atrium Health Ballpark.

Among ways the foundation will help are health and wellness, military and first responders, education, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability. A key piece of the partnership will support education with the creation of a Cannon Ballers Scholarship Program, which will be a gift to a graduating Cabarrus or Rowan county resident who works with the Cannon Ballers. Lilly is also donating more than 1,500 meals to Title I students in both counties who attend one of the team’s three Education Games.

“The education pillar is fundamental to what we do as a ball club, because it’s our responsibility to help form and inspire the young people we count on as fans” said Vince Marcucci, chief revenue officer with Temerity Baseball, in a news release.

To support youth health and wellness, a free Community Youth Baseball Clinic will be hosted by Lilly and the Cannon Ballers.

The Cannon Ballers have hosted two “Dream Day” events on Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrating Dr. King’s legacy and celebrating the African American community.

“We’ve worked hard to make everyone feel welcome at our ballpark, and events like Dream Day and HBCU Night are two small ways we have tried to improve on that. I look forward to being pushed to do even more with our partners at Lilly,” said Cannon Ballers General Manager Matt Millward.

“The Cannon Baller Foundation could not have asked for a better organization to partner with as we look to continue our mission of making an impact on the lives of those in our community. As the construction carries on at the Lilly site in Concord, we are continually reminded of their commitment to the residents of our community. The Cannon Ballers are thankful to have the opportunity to collaborate and assist in facilitating the vision of Lilly’s community impact efforts,” said Marcucci.

Other organizations are also getting involved. Subaru Concord will be joining the Cannon Ballers in supporting the team’s compostable initiative. In 2022, the team made strides by purchasing all compostable food packaging containers and providing the composting bins throughout the ballpark. In addition to the packaging, over 29,000 pounds of food waste was composted throughout the season.

The Cannon Ballers will create the Break-A-Bat, Plant-A-Tree Program presented by Mid-Atlantic Structioneers. The program will focus on the continued replenishment of natural resources. The team will track how many bats are broken during home games and host a tree planting event in the fall to plant the same number of trees back into community parks.

“The best part of this partnership is that we can all encourage each other do to better as individuals and companies. We’re proud to be working not just with the Cannon Ballers, but alongside other dynamic local businesses, too,” said Bob Rosser, president of MASI.

If you are interested in supporting the Cannon Baller Foundation or partnering with the team on a community impact program, contact Marcucci or general manager Matt Millward at 704-932-3267.