O'Malley, Walter F. (Walter Frank), 1903-1979

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Walter O'Malley (1903-1979) was President of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Brooklyn's professional baseball team. Born in the Bronx, N.Y., he graduated from Fordham University School of Law in Manhattan in 1930, and in 1932 was assigned to serve on the Board of Directors of the Brooklyn Dodgers as a representative of the financial interests of the Brooklyn Trust Company. O'Malley became the attorney for the Dodgers in 1943, and by 1947 was Vice President and General Counsel of the organization. He became majority owner and President of the Dodgers in 1950.

Beginning in 1955, shortly before the Dodgers' first World Series victory over the New York Yankees in October of that year, O'Malley began planning for the construction of a new domed stadium in Brooklyn to replace the Dodgers' aging home stadium, Ebbets Field. However, his plans for a new, privately-financed stadium met with consistent opposition from New York politicians. In October of 1957, after failing to come to an agreement for the building of a new stadium in Brooklyn, O'Malley announced he would be relocating the Dodgers to Los Angeles, CA beginning with the 1958 season.

As President of the Los Angeles Dodgers, O'Malley oversaw the construction of the Dodger's new home field, Dodger Stadium, which opened in April of 1962 and was the first privately-financed stadium since the opening of Yankee Stadium in 1923. The Dodgers also won three World Series championships during O'Malley's presidency in Los Angeles, including one in 1959 against the Chicago White Sox, one in 1963 against the New York Yankees, and one in 1965 against the Minnesota Twins.

O'Malley stepped down as President of the Dodgers in 1970 to become Chairman of the Board, appointing his son, Peter O'Malley, as President of the organization. In 1978, Walter O'Malley became the first recipient of the August Busch, Jr. Award, which acknowledges "meritorious service by a non-uniformed front office executive." O'Malley died on August 9, 1970, and was buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Los Angeles next to his wife of 47 years, Kay O'Malley. He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, N.Y. in 2007.

Sources: O'Malley Seidler Partners, LLC. "Walter O'Malley: Timeline of Achievements 1903-2003." Accessed October 21, 2011. http://www.walteromalley.com/biog_time_index.php

From the guide to the Walter O'Malley papers, 1946-1957, (Brooklyn Historical Society)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn [Player File : O'Malley, Walter Francis, 1950- / compiled by the National Baseball Hall of Fame Library, Cooperstown, N.Y.] National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, NBHOF
referencedIn Rickey, Branch, 1881-1965. Papers of Branch Rickey, 1890-1969 (bulk 1936-1965) Library of Congress
referencedIn R. Buckminster Fuller papers, ca. 1920-1983 Stanford University. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives.
creatorOf Hahn, Kenneth. Collection of Kenneth Hahn, circa 1945-1993. Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens
referencedIn Robinson, Jackie, 1919-1972. Jackie Robinson papers, 1934-2001 (bulk 1947-1987). Library of Congress
creatorOf Walter O'Malley papers, 1946-1957 Brooklyn Historical Society
referencedIn Rickey, Branch, 1881-1965. Branch Rickey papers, 1890-1969 (bulk 1936-1965) Library of Congress
referencedIn Branch Rickey Papers, 1890-1969, (bulk 1936-1965) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Jackie Robinson Papers, 1934-2001, (bulk 1947-1987) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn R. Buckminster Fuller papers, ca. 1920-1983 Stanford University. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives.
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Brooklyn Dodgers (Baseball team). corporateBody
associatedWith Fuller, R. Buckminster (Richard Buckminster), 1895-1983 person
associatedWith Hahn, Kenneth. person
associatedWith Moses, Robert, 1888-1981 person
correspondedWith Rickey, Branch, 1881-1965. person
correspondedWith Robinson, Jackie, 1919-1972. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Los Angeles (Calif.)
Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.) |x Social life and customs
Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.) |x Politics and government
Baseball fields--New York (State)--Kings County
Sports--New York (State)--Kings County
Baseball--New York (State)--Kings County
Baseball teams--New York (State)--Kings County
Baseball team owners--New York (State)--Kings County
Ebbets Field (New York, N.Y.)


Birth 1903-10-09

Death 1979-08-09


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