Willis Earns His Wings in Washington

10/01/2003 at 01:00 PM EDT

"Die Hard" star Bruce Willis has a soft side, PEOPLE reports from Washington, D.C.

Tuesday night in the nation's capital, Willis, 45, was honored as a 2003 Angel in Adoption at the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute's annual gala. Also honored: Muhammad and Lonnie Ali, the parents of a son they adopted 12 years ago.

"I have three children, and I love them to death," said Willis, who is father to Rumer, 15, Scout, 12, and Tallulah Belle, 9 (his kids with ex-wife Demi Moore). "It's one of the things that made me volunteer to come to Washington and ask President Bush if I could help somehow with the foster care program."

Willis, who attended the event with girlfriend Brooke Burns, said Bush "called me back a couple months later and said, 'I have a job for you.' I accepted that job." Last year, Bush named him National Spokesperson on Foster Care and Adoption.

He was joined by 160 other "angels" (many of them adoptive parents) at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, and Willis was cited for his work raising money and promoting adoption of foster children.

Among his duties, Willis has made a series of public service announcements promoting the year-old Web site AdoptUSKids.org. He also shot messages with First Lady Laura Bush and "Charlie's Angels" stars Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu and Drew Barrymore.

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