The following note was distributed by Bill O’Shaughnessy, Guardian Fund Chair of the Broadcasters Foundation of America, to media industry professionals. In the spirit of the holiday season, we are pleased to extend the distribution of this note.
As you can see, at left, the Broadcasters Foundation of America has a new logo.
It’s a new look! And … we also have a brand-new website (www.broadcastersfoundation.org).
Before you think all this is merely window dressing, please remember it’s for the essential national charity you know well.
Our altogether unique mission of helping our own fellow broadcasters when life turns sad and difficult remains the same.
The Foundation, which assists broadcasters – past and present – all across the country, remains our profession’s only real “safety net” and “Foul Weather Friend.”
Call it selfish if you will: We help only those who labor in our industry and are hurting and almost forgotten … those who have been laid low by unforeseen circumstances, natural disasters, and personal medical emergencies.
Behind the Scenes
Your yearly support enables the Foundation’s humanitarian assistance for those who appear before the microphone and in front of the camera, as well as their often unsung and under-appreciated back-office colleagues who keep the product of their genius available to our listeners and viewers.
We’re here for them as well.
Thanks to you, we’ve also been there for broadcasters whose lives and families have been devastated by hurricanes, tornados, wildfires, floods and all manner of natural disasters. For example, Hurricane Katrina and the Louisiana floods. Thanks to you, we were able to quickly dispense close to $100,000 in emergency grants to help families get back on their feet.
Be assured that every pleading and petition for assistance is carefully (we should say, relentlessly) vetted and verified by a hard-working pro bono Board of Directors, many of whom you know. They’re doing some of the best work of their lives for your foundation. They will gladly confirm for you just how many of our colleagues are in real distress as a result of life’s vicissitudes and unforeseen medical emergencies … often without sufficient insurance or government assistance of any kind.
We’ll mercifully spare you the tragic and heart-rending details of the affected individuals and families who rely on our work and on your generosity.
A Way to Give Back
We know you do a lot for so many in your own hometown and community. But, as you have been a great leader in our industry and are well-known in the profession you have distinguished for so long, we pray our unique charitable work and mission will resonate in your generous heart.
A Unique Mission
What is it about the Broadcasters Foundation that makes it so special and altogether unique? For one thing, we do have that clear and definite bias, and to that we plead guilty. We help only our own.
“Taking Care of Our Own” is our mantra, and is our theme. It’s what we do. It’s why we exist.
Many of our recipients were cut down in the prime of their lives by illness or sudden catastrophic episodes for which their families were ill-prepared.
Some were almost destitute.
We’ve assisted widows struggling to hold shattered families together following the untimely death of a spouse.
It’s all so sad.
There are “natural” disasters like hurricanes.
But, there are also “personal” disasters visited on families.
That’s the most urgent and poignant part of our work for the foundation you sustain.
One and Only
Again this year, as is our custom, we make only this one annual plea on their behalf.
In recent years, contributions to our all-important Guardian Fund have ranged from just a few much-appreciated dollars to well over $50,000 from several individuals.
While we realize not everyone is capable of such magnificent generosity, we acknowledge our hope that this year you will consider a substantial gift.
In Honor Of …
Many individuals in the past have designated their contributions as Memorial Tributes, in the name of past associates, family members and life-long friends. Among these individuals are the late Tony Malara, Ward Quaal, Ron Ruth, Rick Buckley and Stu Olds.
Unbidden Personal Chapters
And so, we beg your urgent support as our colleagues confront those awful personal chapters life sometimes bestows, unbidden, when we least expect it.
Expressing Our Gratitude
All major gifts to the Guardian Fund are gratefully acknowledged in our Annual Report, widely distributed to several thousand broadcasters, community and corporate leaders and media professionals all across the nation.
Individual and corporate contributions are fully deductible and may be made to the Guardian Fund of the Broadcasters Foundation of America, your profession’s officially certified and registered 501(c)3 national public charity.
Our Final Plea
This year please send whatever you can to our national office in New York, in care of President Jim Thompson.
The Broadcasters Foundation of America
125 West 55 Street
New York, NY 10019
With great gratitude.
Dan Mason, Chairman
Jim Thompson, President
Dick Foreman, Vice Chairman
Phil Lombardo, Chairman Emeritus
Ed McLaughlin, Chairman Emeritus
Bill O’Shaughnessy, Guardian Fund Chair