Curtis Granderson is a former MLB All Star and philanthropist from Chicago, whose commitment to improving the lives of children and families from coast-to-coast has earned him recognition as one of baseball’s most influential leaders.
Curtis was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in 2002, and made his MLB debut with the team in 2004.
In 2003, Curtis graduated from the University of Illinois Chicago with a dual degree in Business Management and Marketing, earning elite status as one of less than 4% of MLB athletes to graduate from college.
In 2007, Curtis established the Grand Kids Foundation to create educational opportunities for inner city children, and introduce them to the great sport of baseball.
After an All Star 2009 season, Curtis was traded to the New York Yankees, where he spent four seasons in pinstripes. In 2013, he made the move across town to the New York Mets for four more years of New York ball.
While hosting inner city baseball clinics, Curtis identified a new thread of his philanthropic efforts, when he recognized that children couldn’t explore the fun of physical fitness or the excitement of educational opportunities without adequate nutrition. As a result, Grand Giving was established in 2011 to end hunger for good. To date, the initiative has raised more than 17.5 million meals for children and families in need across the country.
Granderson honored his alma mater UIC in 2015 with a donation of $5 million – the largest ever one-time donation from a professional athlete to their alma mater – to fund the construction of a state-of-the-art baseball and education facility on campus.
In 2016, Granderson was selected to receive the Roberto Clemente and Marvin Miller Man of the Year awards for his incredible commitment to excellence and leadership, on and off the field.
*As of 2019, Granderson was the first player to ever win the Marvin Miller Man of the Year Award four times.
In 2017, Curtis celebrated the 10th anniversary of his Grand Kids Foundation, his 300th career home run, and a trade to the L.A. Dodgers for the post season that helped them to successfully secure a spot in the 2017 World Series.
The three time MLB All Star wrapped up his sixteenth season in 2019. His journey included time with the Detroit Tigers, New York Yankees, New York Mets, Los Angeles Dodgers, Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers, and the Miami Marlins.
Curtis Granderson announced his retirement after a 16-year career in the major leagues. “As I close out this wonderful chapter in my life and step away from my days on the field, I know that my role in this game is only just getting started,” Granderson said.