Both spent their entire playing careers with the New York Yankees, winning numerous championships, individual awards, and becoming synonymous with the most iconic team in American sports. And while the on-field accomplishments of Joe DiMaggio and Derek Jeter are many, it’s the way they carried themselves away from the diamond – with style, class, and dignity – that continues to link them to this day.
Now, the baseball legends will have another point of commonality, as the children’s hospital foundation that bears the Yankee Clipper’s name presents Jeter with its 2018 Joe DiMaggio American Icon Award. The CEO of the Miami Marlins and founder of the Turn 2 Foundation, Jeter becomes the recipient of the fifth Icon award, following Bill Clinton, Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Pat Riley, and Emilio & Gloria Estefan. The award recognizes those whose values are consistent with what DiMaggio exemplified and whose contributions have influenced American society.
The former Yankee captain was honored at a fundraiser, held at the Diplomat Beach Resort in Hollywood, which raised more than $600,000 for programs, services, and facilities for kids and families at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.
“Derek capably carried on Joe’s legacy while wearing the Yankee pinstripes and has continued to be an impact player in retirement,” said Kevin Janser, who leads the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation for Memorial Healthcare System. “His dedication to children through the Turn 2 Foundation makes him a true American icon and ideal recipient of this award.”
Jeter’s foundation has awarded more than $27 million in grants to create and support programs that motivate young people to turn away from drugs and alcohol and “turn 2” healthy lifestyles. The nonprofit focuses on academic excellence, leadership development, positive behavior, healthy choices, and social change.
On the field, the longtime shortstop was a five-time World Series champion, 14-time All-Star, Rookie of the Year, Roberto Clemente Award winner, and member of the exclusive 3,000-hit club. Jeter was named “Sportsman of the Year” in 2009 by Sports Illustrated.