On October 28th, a local community planning consortium composed of 88 C.H.U.M.P., Change Happens, Houston Society for Change, and the Jack Yates High School National Alumni Association (JYNAA) hosted an official Renaming Ceremony on the Jack Yates High School football field. The George Perry Floyd Jr Athletic Community Field will be on the campus of Jack Yates High School, which is located at3650 Alabama, in the heart of Houston’s historic Third Ward community.
Jack Yates High School is the epitome of history, culture, and pride of the African American community, and on September 9, 2021, the Houston Independent School District (HISD) Board of Education unanimously approved the recommendation by the Naming Committee at Jack Yates High School to name the field the George Perry Floyd Jr. Athletic Community Field.
The community planning consortium received a field valued at $1,250,000 donated by the Houston Texans, Harris County Sports & Convention Corporation-NRG Park, and Hellas Construction, Inc., $250,000 from the NFL Grassroots Foundation, and a $200,000 NFL Matching Grant through the Houston Texans to install the new synthetic sports turf surface.
Additionally, Commissioner Rodney Ellis was instrumental in the designation of Yates High School as the recipient of the field.
Helen Stagg, CEO of Change Happens stated, “What an extraordinary opportunity to say to the Third Ward community, here is one of our own who helped to change the world, and this field will carry his name forever more, reminding each of us how any one of us can make a difference.”
Stagg announced that the Planning Consortium is launching a Capital Campaign to raise $685,000 in additional funds needed to complete the field installation project, and it was also announced that donations were received from Invest in Others Charitable Foundation ($25,000) and Texas Southern University ($10,000).
“We are thrilled to recognize these donations that will serve as a trailblazer for the project,” said Carl Davis, President of Houston Society for Change. “The installation of this new field is intended not only to respond to the immediate shortage of playing fields, but also to build an infrastructure through partnerships and resident involvement that will sustain these open spaces for community use. Moreover, this project will serve as a model for how schools and community can work together to ensure positive youth and community development.”
George Floyd was killed by Minnesota police on May 25, 2020. His murder incited months of protests across the world and prompted calls for racial justice and equity. Floyd grew up in Houston, Texas and played football and basketball throughout high school at Jack Yates.
The Planning Consortium is a strategic alliance which represents community development, education, community engagement and social service organizations anchored in the neighborhood, shares the common goal of creating an athletic field that will offer local schools and the community opportunities for sports, recreation, education, and relaxation that contribute to the local quality of life.