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Willie Horton

Special Assistant to the General Manager

The "hometown hero" and former Tigers great, who enjoys success in several outside ventures, returns to the Tigers as an executive advisor and special assistant to share in the future prosperity of a team and a game for which he carries an undying passion.

Was named as special assistant to the president in January 2002.

In July, 2015, announced as spokesperson for the U.S. Navy film titled "The Birth of a Ship in a City Reborn", a film about the USS Detroit (LCS 7), a United States Navy Littoral Combat Ship.

On June 20, 2015, awarded the "Hank Aaron Champion for Justice Award" by the Atlanta Braves and the National Center for Civil & Human Rights at the Braves third annual Heritage Weekend.

On October 15, 2014, PACE Academy in Southfield, MI opened the Willie Horton Library.

On April 12, 2013, Willie cast his hands in cement for the Detroit Historical Museum as a part of the Historical Society honoring legends who have always called Detroit "home." His hand cast with signature will be part of an outdoor exhibit in the museum's Legends Plaza.

Named the inaugural recipient of the Abner Doubleday Patriot Player Award on November 18, 2011...the award was presented by the National Infantry Foundation and honors a Major Leaguer who has made significant contributions in support of the military and their families.

Honored with The Order of Saint Maurice on June 14, 2006, the highest military honor to be given to civilians...he was the first athlete to receive the award.

Received testimonial resolution for community leadership from the Detroit City Council on October 13, 2004...was also honored with the Spirit of Detroit Award by the Detroit City Council on July 21, 2004.

Honored by Detroit Northwestern High School, his alma mater, when the school named the Willie Horton

Baseball and Softball Diamonds on August 6, 2004...the diamonds added a monument in his honor in 2005.

Had his birthday, October 18, permanently designated as "Willie Horton Day" in the state of Michigan when Governor Jennifer Granholm signed House Bill 5200 on April 7, 2004.

Named by Corp Magazine as one of Michigan's most influential African-American business leaders in 2003.

Named to the CATCH Hall of Fame on October 16, 2002 as a community leader.

Joined the Tigers front office on June 18, 2001 as part of a baseball committee created by then-owner Mike Ilitch.

Was honored by the Tigers in having his jersey number 23 retired and a Comerica Park statue in his likeness unveiled on July 15, 2000.

An 18-year Major League veteran as an outfielder and designated hitter, he played 14 seasons in Detroit after signing at age 18 in 1961 following an outstanding baseball career at Detroit Northwestern High School.

Produced nearly 2,000 hits, 325 home runs and maintained a .457 slugging percentage during his Major League career...finished with 1,163 RBI, a .273 lifetime average and 2,028 games played.

Voted as a starting outfielder for the 1965 All-Star Game...collected 104 RBI that season, second-most in the American League, and ranked sixth in the league with a .490 slugging percentage.

Struggled with an ankle injury in 1967, but returned to the All-Star Game in 1968...capped the season by batting .304 with a home run and three RBI in the World Series as the Tigers took the World Championship.

Threw out St. Louis' Lou Brock at home plate during the Tigers 5-3 win in Game Five of the 1968 World Series.

Tied a Major League record with 11 putouts in left field on July 18, 1969 at Cleveland.

Named to the All-Star squad again in 1970 and 1973, hitting .305 and .316, respectively, and tallying 17 home runs in each of those seasons...named to seven All-Star Teams in his career, but played in only four due to injury.

Received the 1975 American League "Outstanding Designated Hitter" award and was named the 1975 Tiger of the Year...hit .275 with 25 home runs in 1975, his first full season in the designated hitter role.

Also earned league Designated Hitter and Comeback Player honors in 1979.

Played for both Detroit and Texas in 1977, for Cleveland, Oakland and Toronto in 1978, and finished his professional career with Seattle in 1979-80...hit 29 home runs in 1979 and collected 106 RBI.

Became the 43rd player in Major League history to collect 300 career home runs when he went deep off Jack Morris in the Kingdome on June 6, 1979.

Hit 20-or-more homers in seven of his seasons and remains fifth on the Tigers all-time list with 262.

Named to the "Tigers Greatest" team as selected by fans in 1969.

Played for and managed Valencia in the 1978-79 Venezuelan Winter League, capturing the Caribbean Title.

Held coaching positions with the Tigers, Oakland Athletics, New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox.

Departed Tiger Stadium in uniform during 1967 in a desperate attempt to quell rioting in Northwest Detroit.

Served as second deputy chief and executive director chief for the Detroit Police Athletic League (PAL), and worked with the United Way, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, the Meals on Wheels Program and the Foundation Fighting Blindness...also served as an advisory committee member of the Skillman Foundation and was a J.C. Penney Golden Rule Award panel member.

Inducted into the Military Hall of Fame for his service as a guest speaker on many occasions in the U.S. and abroad...enshrined in both the Afro-American Hall of Fame (1992) and Michigan Sports Hall of Fame (1987).

He and wife, Gloria, have seven children, 19 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and two great-great grandchildren