Marvin Miller was the first executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Association, holding that position from 1966 to 1982. During his tenure the game was changed forever through Miller's leadership of the union. Baseball's reserve clause was nullified in a ruling by arbitrator Peter Seitz and free agency was introduced in 1975. Baseball salaries have been going up ever since.
Miller died on Nov. 27, 2012 at the age of 95 still awaiting admission to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. He came up one vote short (11) to the 12 needed in 2010 when his candidacy was considered by the Expansion Era Committee. The Expansion Era committee will meet again this December for induction ceremonies in 2014. The committee is on a three-year cycle. The Baseball Writers' Association of America did not vote anyone into the Hall for this year - Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were among those on the ballot - because of performance enhancing drug concerns.
When Miller did not receive the necessary votes in 2010, MLBPA executive director Michael Weiner issued this statement: "On behalf of members past and present of the Major League Baseball Players Association, I express my frustration, disappointment and sadness that Marvin Miller today was again denied his rightful place in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Every person who has benefited in the past half century from baseball's prosperity -- player, owner, executive, manager, coach, or member of the media -- owes a debt to Marvin. Marvin's legacy is undiminished by this vote; the Hall, by contrast, once again squandered a chance to better itself as an institution." Miller also fell short of votes for induction in 2003 and 2007.
MLBPA will now host a Marvin Miller memorial celebration on Monday, Jan. 21 at 6 p.m. at the New York University Law School's Tishman Auditorium.
"The Major League Baseball Players Association is hosting an event to celebrate the life and accomplishments of Marvin Miller, the MLBPA’s first executive director, who passed away at the age of 95 on November 27, 2012," says a press release. "Guests will hear from those who knew him best, and join in celebrating the life of one of the most influential labor leaders and sports professionals of the 20th century."
It will be hosted by Weiner. Speakers will include Jim Bouton, Major Leaguer, 1962-78; Murray Chass, former National Baseball reporter for The New York Times; Tony Clark, MLBPA Director of Player Relations; Major Leaguer, 1995-2009; Don Fehr, Executive Director, NHLPA & former MLBPA Executive Director; Phil Garner, Major Leaguer, 1973-88; Dr. Charles Korr, Author & Professor Emeritus, University of Missouri—St. Louis; Buck Martinez, Major Leaguer, 1969-86; Joe Morgan, Major Leaguer, 1963-84; Dick Moss, Former MLBPA General Counsel; Steve Renko, Major Leaguer, 1969-83; Steve Rogers, MLBPA Special Assistant; Major Leaguer, 1973-85 and Rusty Staub, Major Leaguer, 1963-85
A limited number of seats will be made available to the general public on a first-come, first-served basis on the day of the event. Doors open at 5:30 P.M.