The school had previously been named for Nathan Bedford Forrest, a Confederate general who was active in the KKK.
Born and raised in Mobile, Alabama and nicknamed “Hammer” or “Hammerin’ Hank”, Aaron played right field for 23 seasons in the Major Leagues (1954 – 1976), 21 seasons with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Braves in the National League and two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers in the American League.
During his time in MLB, and especially during his run for the home run record, Aaron and his family endured extensive racist threats. His experiences influenced him to become active in the civil rights movement.
Following his playing career, Aaron joined the Braves front office in 1976 as Vice-President and Director of Player Development. He most recently was a Senior Vice President, a role he held since December 1989. In 1988, Aaron was inducted into the Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame. In 1999, MLB introduced the Hank Aaron Award to recognize the top offensive players in each league. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2002 and was named a 2010 Georgia Trustee by the Georgia Historical Society in recognition of accomplishments that reflect the ideals of Georgia’s founders.