Sept. 17, 2002
DETROIT -- Michael Ilitch, co-founder and chairman of Little Caesars, is the 381st wealthiest person in America, according to Forbes.
Forbes estimated Ilitch's net worth at $575 million in its prestigious "400 Richest People" list.
In the mid-'50s, Ilitch played shortstop for a Detroit Tigers farm team, but in 1959 he traded his ball glove for a pizza peel and launched Little Caesars with wife Marian. The company is now the fourth-largest pizza chain in the world.
Their company, Ilitch Holdings, Inc., manages the operation of the Detroit Tigers, the Detroit Red Wings and a handful of entertainment and service companies. Michael Ilitch is the Tigers' sole owner.