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 Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship

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PostSubject: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Fri Jan 11, 2008 12:13 am

01/10/2008 4:01 PM ET


Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship
Community event to be held at Holy Redeemer Church in southwest Detroit

DETROIT -- Magglio Ordoņez usually hits all of his home runs on a baseball field. However, this weekend, the reigning American League batting champion will begin touching all the bases to help deserving high school seniors attend college.

The Detroit Tigers Caravan will make a special stop at a community event in Southwest Detroit on Sunday, January 13 to formally announce the creation of the Ordoņez Family Scholarship.

The Ordoņez Family Scholarship is an endowed scholarship funded by a generous donation to the Detroit Tigers Foundation by Ordoņez and his family. Administered through the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, the Ordoņez Family Scholarship will award an annual $2,500 scholarship to a Southwest Detroit high school senior to attend college, renewable for up to four years (up to $10,000).

The announcement on Sunday will be part of a community event to be held at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church, 1721 Junction Avenue, and hosted by the Southwest Detroit Business Association. The event will begin at 10:30 a.m. and is open to the public. The scholarship announcement will take place from 11:15-11:45 a.m. with participants available to answer media questions for approximately 15 minutes following the event.

In addition to Ordoņez, also expected to participate in the program on Sunday are Jordan Field, manager of the Detroit Tigers Foundation, Robin Ferriby, Vice President Philanthropic Services, Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, and Kathy Wendler, Southwest Detroit Business Association President.

"We are proud to join Magglio and his family in making this commitment to the youth of Southwest Detroit," said Elaine Lewis, Vice President, Community and Public Affairs for the Tigers. "We look forward to celebrating and honoring the Ordoņez Family Scholarship winners at Comerica Park for years to come."

The first Ordoņez Family Scholarship will be awarded this spring. The application deadline for students interested in the scholarship is April 1, 2008. To be eligible, applicants must be a resident of Southwest Detroit and have attended a Southwest Detroit high school for their entire secondary education. Southwest Detroit is generally defined as the area south of I-94 and west of the I-75/I-96 interchange in the city of Detroit. Students can contact the Community Foundation or their high school guidance counselor for additional information or applications.

"This scholarship is another key investment made in our community by the Detroit Tigers organization and the Ordoņez family," Wendler said. "We look forward to working with them on creating many more opportunities for Southwest Detroit in the future."

The Detroit Tigers Foundation is committed to using the game of baseball to enhance the quality of life in its community with a focus on youth, education and recreation. It aids in the development and funding of innovative programs, including field renovation projects that reach the community with positive messages and promote the good citizenship embodied in the storied history of the Detroit Tigers.

The Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, founded in 1984, is a permanent community endowment built by gifts from thousands of individuals and organizations committed to the future of Southeast Michigan. The Community Foundation works to improve the region's quality of life by connecting those who care with causes that matter and supports a wide variety of activities benefiting education, arts and culture, health, human services, community development and civic affairs. The Community Foundation has assets of more than $670 million and, since its inception, has distributed more than $295 million through more than 29,000 grants to nonprofit organizations throughout Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Monroe, Washtenaw, St. Clair and Livingston counties.

The Southwest Detroit Business Association is an award-winning Community Development Corporation (CDC) committed to fostering innovation, drive and commitment in the community. Working with investors, entrepreneurs, customers and neighbors, it capitalizes on Southwest Detroit's competitive advantage, supporting the community's vision for a healthy, vibrant neighborhood.


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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Fri Jan 11, 2008 12:32 am

Great to see our man giving back!
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Fri Jan 11, 2008 2:10 am

Magglio Rules! Great to hear this!
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Fri Jan 11, 2008 4:56 pm

clap
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Fri Jan 11, 2008 5:14 pm

go team


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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Sun Jan 13, 2008 3:48 am

Yeah!
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Mon Jan 14, 2008 12:34 am

01/13/2008 8:21 PM ET
Ordonez creates scholarship fund
Tigers outfielder readily gives back to his adopted city
By Jason Beck / MLB.com

DETROIT -- Magglio Ordonez hopes to spend the rest of his career here. He hopes his impact in this city lasts longer.

To that end, Sunday was a pretty big hit for the reigning American League batting champ.

One kid after another came up to the podium during his Winter Caravan appearance at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church and asked him questions, from what his favorite food is (it's Mexican) to how fans in his native Venezuela receive him, to how he feels about the offseason moves. It was a nice moment, but Ordonez's focus was on their future.

With Sunday's appearance, the reigning American League batting champion and Tigers team MVP officially announced the Ordonez Family Scholarship. The $2,500-per-year scholarship will be awarded to one southwest Detroit area high school senior each year and renewable for up to four years.

It was his family's way of giving back to the city, by giving the opportunity he didn't really have.

"If you want to be somebody in your life, you have to have an education," Ordonez said Sunday. "For me, I didn't have the opportunity to go to college. I signed when I was 17 years old. The way that I can give something to the people here in Detroit is to help them out with a scholarship and also with the support of the Detroit Tigers."

The scholarship is more than a sign of how much Ordonez and his family value education. It's a sign of how much they've grown to value their baseball home.

This coming season will be Ordonez's fourth as a Tiger. He came to town with a lucrative free-agent contract prior to the 2005 season and a promise from team owner Mike Ilitch to build the team into a contender. He had been to the city as a visiting player with the White Sox for years, but didn't really know much about the place. Fans, in turn, knew Ordonez as a great hitter but didn't know what kind of person he was.

The relationship has blossomed on both sides, especially after Ordonez's walkoff home run to send the Tigers to the World Series two years ago.

"I have to give something back to the community," he said. "People here in Detroit, they've been really nice to me. They've supported me the last three years. It's a way I can do something for the fans and the people here in Detroit.

"I'm really happy. The more that I know the city, the more that I know the state of Michigan, I like it even more every year."

The fact that the scholarship will target southwest Detroit has significance. The area has a big Latino presence, including the Mexican Village neighborhood near Tiger Stadium. It's an area Ordonez had never seen before, and as he took a look around while he drove in for the ceremony, he saw kids outside playing. He transitioned easily between Spanish and English as he addressed the crowded parish hall, then talked to the Little Leaguers.

The Latino presence on the Tigers has grown. As Ordonez pointed out, the only prominent such players on the team when he signed were Ivan Rodriguez and Carlos Guillen.

"And now," Ordonez said, "we've got 15 Latino players [on the 40-man roster]."

Ordonez said he plans to talk to them about giving back.

Much as he might like to take all the credit for his effort, he readily calls his wife, Dagly, the "mastermind" behind the idea, along with the club. With a large donation from the Ordonez family to the Detroit Tigers Foundation, the team worked with the Southwest Detroit Business Association, which hosted Sunday's event, and the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, which will administer the scholarship and the selection process.

To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be a resident of southwest Detroit, generally recognized as the area of the city south of Interstate 94 and west of the I-75/I-96 interchange. They also must have attended a high school in southwest Detroit for their entire secondary education. Interested students who qualify can contact the Community Foundation or their high school guidance counselor.

The application deadline for the inaugural scholarship is April 1. If Ordonez plays out his entire Tigers contract, including the two option years, he could be around to see the first student graduate from a four-year college.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:55 am

M. Ordonez Metal
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Mon Jan 14, 2008 2:43 pm

I love how it says he was answering questions from kids, that must have been really cute!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Mon Jan 14, 2008 3:40 pm

It is nice to see guys giving back...way to go Mags!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Ordoņez set to announce Family Scholarship   Mon Jan 14, 2008 8:54 pm

Quote :
"I'm really happy. The more that I know the city, the more that I know the state of Michigan, I like it even more every year."

The detroit team and fans grow on a player and they WANT to be part of the dinamics involved! It also helps having DD and Leland, the players seem to love working for them!

Go Detroit! Yea.


Quote :
"And now," Ordonez said, "we've got 15 Latino players [on the 40-man roster]."

Ordonez said he plans to talk to them about giving back.

Much
as he might like to take all the credit for his effort, he readily
calls his wife, Dagly, the "mastermind" behind the idea, along with the
club. With a large donation from the Ordonez family to the Detroit
Tigers Foundation, the team worked with the Southwest Detroit Business
Association, which hosted Sunday's event, and the Community Foundation
for Southeast Michigan, which will administer the scholarship and the
selection process.

That is neat, he will lead the others to reach out and help the community!


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
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PostSubject: Ordonez happy planting his roots   Mon Jan 14, 2008 9:53 pm

Monday, January 14, 2008
Bob Wojnowski:
Ordonez happy planting his roots

DETROIT -- They crowded closer and closer to the stage as the time grew near. Kids in baseball uniforms, adults in Sunday clothes, coaches in jeans. And when Magglio Ordonez appeared, his casual smile lit the room, stirring shrieks and cheers.

But this is not your normal tale of a sports star greeting his fans. When Ordonez stepped into the large community center room at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in southwest Detroit on Sunday, he saw faces and heard voices exactly like his. He answered some questions in English, some in Spanish.

And by the time he finished speaking, after he had announced the formation of the Ordonez Family Scholarship Fund and answered questions from nervous kids, it was clear this wasn't only about baseball.

If athletes ever wonder how they can connect, how they can have an impact, they should have been in that church, the big brick structure in the middle of an old neighborhood dotted with Mexican restaurants and family owned markets.

This was Ordonez's first trip to the heart of Detroit's Latino community, and it should be the start of something special. No team has the capacity to connect with more people in this city right now than the Tigers. And here's the challenge to all of them: Connect in all the important ways, in all the important places.

"This is a great thing Magglio did," said Ish Ledesma, who has coached baseball in southwest Detroit since 1975. "He reinforced everything we've been preaching, that you've got to get your education. I've been telling kids that for years, but to hear Magglio say it, well, he just made my job a little easier."

A nice fit


Ordonez and his family, working with the Detroit Tigers Foundation, will make a student's life a little easier. Every year, a qualified high school senior from southwest Detroit will receive a $2,500 scholarship, renewable for four years if the grades stay good, up to $10,000.

On a larger scale, Ordonez reaffirmed what the Tigers have been showing on the field for the past few years -- that the Latino community is a tremendous resource, for athletic reasons and consumer reasons and basic family reasons.

Ordonez never went to college, signing into professional baseball in his native Venezuela at the age of 17. That's one reason, at the urging of his wife, Dagly, he wanted to push academics.

Ordonez also might be the Tigers' most-popular player, from his famous bundle of hair to his ever-present smile to his pennant-clinching home run. He's entrenched here, and it was time to plant roots.

"You can do a lot of things on the field, but you also want to be recognized off the field," said Ordonez, who turns 34 this month. "I'm really happy here and I want to give something back. The more I know the city and the more I know the state, I like it even more."

Oh, he loved it plenty two years ago, when the Tigers reached the World Series. Last season, Ordonez hit 363, becoming the first Tiger in 46 years to win the A.L. batting crown.

He says he feels better than ever. The Tigers look better than ever too, and you can bet the comfort level among the team's Latin players is a factor.

When Pudge Rodriguez and Carlos Guillen arrived in 2004, they became the Tigers' most-notable Latin players. This offseason, the Tigers traded for Miguel Cabrera and Edgar Renteria, and now the entire infield will be manned by Latin players.

You could argue the Tigers didn't get great until they tapped this segment of the baseball population. The average fan might not consider that important. Hey, if the guy can hit, who cares where he's from?

Fair enough.

'He cares about us'

The people in southwest Detroit care. Any swelling of pride in any minority community matters. It's why black athletes regularly return and invest in their neighborhoods.

It's why Ordonez made the trip Sunday and said he'd urge his Latin teammates to make similar commitments. It's why Bill Tyler, a longtime coach and teacher in southwest Detroit, was beaming.

"There was a time when all these ballfields around here were mostly empty," Tyler said. "The turnaround is amazing, and it's because kids see Magglio and Pudge and all those guys and they relate to them. They helped bring it back."

Every bit helps. Every investment -- in money or time or simple acknowledgement -- makes a difference. That's the message of this day.

I asked one of the little leaguers what it meant for Ordonez to come to his neighborhood. Jose Solis, 13, hesitated, then smiled.

"It was cool," he said. "He cares about us."

This was just one day, one star player, one terrific gesture, one profound impact. There is more, always more, to be done.

"Every year we get more fans and it's great, much different than when I played in Chicago," said Ordonez, in his fourth season in Detroit. "People here are nice. They like me and I like them. It's good. I want to be here the rest of my life."

Once you find your home and settle in, the next step is to make it better. That's the step Ordonez took Sunday. Over time, you hope more will reap the benefits, and more will follow.

You can reach Bob Wojnowski at bob.wojnowski@detnews.com.


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