GRAMBLING, LA – Grambling State University will award baseball legend Henry “Hank” Aaron with the honorary degree, Doctor of Business, during the 2015 Spring Commencement at 10 a.m. Friday, May 8 at the Frederick C. Hobdy Assembly Center.
Aaron, who is currently the senior vice president in the Atlanta Braves front office, will receive the university’s highest honor for his numerous contributions to professional baseball and society through his substantial charitable efforts.
Aaron played 21 seasons for the Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves in the National League and two seasons for the Milwaukee Brewers in the American League. In his 23-year Major League career, Aaron rewrote baseball’s record book. When he retired at the end of the 1976 season, he held more Major League batting records than any other player in the game’s history. His most famous home run came in Atlanta on April 8, 1974, when he hit his 715 home run, breaking Babe Ruth’s seemingly untouchable record. In 2007, Barry Bonds broke Aaron’s record for Most Home Runs, Lifetime (755).
Following his playing career, Aaron joined the Braves’ front office in 1976 for a 13-year tenure as vice president and director of player development. In that position, he oversaw the development of many players instrumental in the Braves’ 1982 National League West Division championship. Since December 1989, he has served as senior vice president for the Braves.
Since his retirement from professional baseball, Aaron has also given back to society for nearly 40 years. His Chasing the Dream Foundation was established in 2007 to help children between the ages of nine and 12 realize their dreams, as he realized his. In addition, the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Four-for-Four Scholarship program, begun in 2010, has endowed four-year scholarships for the benefit of deserving students who have chosen to pursue their dreams by attending college.
“Everyone knows about Grambling’s great tradition in football, but few know that GSU President Ralph Waldo Emerson Jones was also the head baseball coach. Grambling also has a reputation for producing baseball greats; and to have Mr. Henry ‘Hammering Hank’ Aaron visit our campus to be recognized for his outstanding contributions to baseball, business and society is an honor,” GSU Interim President Cynthia Warrick said.
GSU Media Relations