The highest honor ever received by Daniel from his hometown is without a doubt his appointment as a Busan City public relations ambassador. Daniel was selected through an event held by the city of Busan in April 2019 asking its citizens to recommend a celebrity that they think is most fitting to promote the city. A total of 2,037 nominees who were all homegrown talents from the city were considered. At the end of the recommendation period, Daniel was one of three public figures hailing from the city selected.[s]
On June 12, 2019, it was revealed that Daniel had given his consent to assume the honorary ambassadorship role and would actively and voluntarily promote the city through various public activities. It was also reported that the official appointment ceremony was scheduled for July 2019. Responding to this honor, Daniel commented through his agency, “I’ve always wanted to do something for Busan, the city I was born and raised in. I’m glad and feel a sense of responsibility to be named as [the city’s] promotional ambassador. Even though [Busan] is already a great city, I will try my best to be even a little bit of help for it to grow into becoming a better city.”[s] [soompi]
Further details regarding the official appointment ceremony was revealed on July 3, 2019. The date and venue for the ceremony were set for July 9 at Busan Sajik Baseball Stadium, the home stadium of the Lotte Giants team. In addition to receiving the official letter of appointment and plaque from Busan’s mayor Oh Geodon, Daniel also received the honor of throwing the first pitch at a KBO League baseball match between the Lotte Giants and NC Dinos. The live broadcast of the entire ceremony was provided by Busan City and Busan Tourism Organization through their official Facebook and YouTube accounts. The news came as a sweet surprise because in 2018 Daniel confided in a V LIVE that he wanted to perform the ceremonial first pitch for his hometown team Lotte Giants at Busan Sajik Baseball Stadium, and it eventually turned into reality exactly one year later. The fans’ reaction to the news was overwhelming, as the event would also mark Daniel’s first public appearance after his long hiatus. Tickets for the match scheduled for the ceremony date also became hot items, and the Lotte Giants website went down due to too many people trying to access its online ticketing system.