Major League Soccer announced today that the 2021 MLS Works Humanitarian of the Year has been awarded to Toronto FC defender Justin Morrow.
Morrow, 34, who announced his retirement as a player after a 12-year MLS career, has played a major role off the pitch with his philanthropic work in the local community since coming to Toronto. Over the past year, Morrow supported MLSE Foundation’s Change The Game campaign, dedicated to raising funds and awareness to address systemic barriers preventing youth from reaching their potential. He was also integral in working to allocate fundraising dollars to Foundation For Black Communities, Canada’s first-ever philanthropic foundation dedicated to investing in Black Communities. This included funds raised during MLS’ Juneteenth-inspired auction ($3,890) and a donation on behalf of team partner BMO ($5,000)
Morrow is a member of the More Than A Vote coalition, which has taken tangible steps to encourage civic engagement and remove barriers to voting. He has been working to improve voter registration numbers among his MLS peers and has taken time to meet with league staff at all levels to discuss the initiatives he and the Black Players for Change (BPC) organization are working on.
In 2020, Morrow was named executive director of BPC following the organization’s launch on June 19, 2020. BPC has made a significant impact in the soccer community and was named the MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year award winner in December 2020.
Morrow spent the past eight seasons with Toronto FC. His 254 appearances across all competitions rank second all-time in club history. During his time with the club, Morrow has registered 18 goals and 20 assists, numbers which make him the most prolific attacking defender in club history. During TFC’s 2017 MLS Cup championship campaign, Morrow was voted to the MLS Best XI.
In recognition of Morrow’s humanitarian efforts, MLS WORKS will donate $5,000 to DeRo Foundation.
The finalists for MLS WORKS Humanitarian of the Year were determined by votes from current MLS players, technical staff and front offices and media members.