Hip Hip Hooray, Harlem Lacrosse And New Heights 2022 Winners Of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Sports Award

June 8, 2022

Ten organizations have been selected as 2022 winners of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) Sports Award, including New York’s Harlem Lacrosse and New Heights. The winners will receive a $30,000 cash prize and be honored virtually on June 8, 2022.

Harlem Lacrosse provides opportunities, relationships, and experiences that activate the skills and traits to put youth on a path to success as students, athletes, and citizens.

“Harlem Lacrosse is honored to receive the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sports award alongside so many other incredible organizations. Harlem Lacrosse supports students by placing program directors in schools every day and integrating sports-based youth development with academic intervention. We believe that our participants deserve access to the best possible academic, enrichment and athletic experiences as a matter of equity and are so grateful to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for helping us provide healthy, empowering opportunities to more students with this award.” —Mike Levin, CEO


New Heights uses basketball as a “hook” to engage youth, help them access high-quality educational opportunities, and instill in them the values and life skills that will prepare them for success in life beyond sports.

“On behalf of our Board, staff, and especially our student-athletes, thank you to the RWJF for recognizing the important work we do at New Heights to help young people develop the academic and athletic skills to support physical and mental health throughout their lives. We are deeply honored to receive the RWJF Sports Award, which comes at a critical time as we expand our programs and our organization to ultimately reach thousands of additional youth and families in Brooklyn and throughout New York City.” —Ted Smith, executive director

Since 2015, this award has recognized professional sports teams, athletes, coaches, and community-based organizations that use sports to catalyze and sustain changes to make communities healthier places to live, learn, work, and play.


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RWJF lifts up organizations that bring a deep understanding of community needs and acknowledge the power of sports to connect us and make us healthier, no matter our race, gender, abilities, or economic background.

This award program will be coming to a close this year.

“We celebrate and honor all of the organizations that have been winners and finalists over the history of our award program recognizing the power of sports to improve health equity,” said Dr. Richard Besser, president and CEO of RWJF. “We take pride in the tremendous growth, accomplishments, and contributions to health made through sports.”

For a complete list of all of the 2022 winners, please click here.

Photo credit: Boys from HLL’s P.S. 149 Program warm-up before the Spring 2015 Harlem Bowl on Randall’s Island. Harlem Lacrosse. (photo by Louie Sawi).

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