Category Archives: Connecting to Local Communities

WDIV Hosts “Help 4 Hurricane Relief” Telethon

(L-R) Local 4 Reporter Hank Winchester, WDIV Vice President and General Manager Marla Drutz, Jon Witz/ABE Foundation

In response to the widespread devastation caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Graham Media’s WDIV-TV (Detroit),  Art Van Furniture and the American Red Cross Michigan Region joined forces to air an all-day telethon “Help 4 Hurricane Relief, ” on September 12.

A total of $430,267 was raised, not counting additional donations that may have come through the station’s website.

Hosted at the downtown Detroit studios of WDIV-Local 4, with an additional phone bank at the Warren location of Art Van Furniture, the telethon featured firsthand accounts of Harvey’s impact on the nation’s fourth largest metropolitan area. WDIV-Local 4 reporter Nick Monacelli and a station crew have been reporting from the devastation in Houston for sister station KPRC since soon after Harvey began to flood neighborhoods.

WDIV Vice President and General Manager Marla Drutz had this to say after the telethon“Local TV has a profound impact on its community and we witnessed that again today. It took a lot of hard work and resources to plan and execute this initiative, but we knew it was it was important and desperately needed. There is nothing better than watching great people do great things and I saw that firsthand today.”

Money collected will be donated to the American Red Cross relief efforts for hurricane devastation in Texas and Florida.

In addition to the efforts of WDIV, shortly after Hurricane Harvey, Graham Media’s parent company, Graham Holdings, made a $100,000 contribution that was split between the Houston area Red Cross and the Houston Food Bank to help heal those communities.

Detroit Stations Team Up for Operation Backpack

During the week of August 21, WJBK-TV, WNIC-FM, and WKQI-FM teamed up with Kroger Food Stores to collect new backpacks and school supplies for children in need in the Detroit community.  WJKB-TV’s Sherry Margolis along with Jay Towers from both WJBK and WNIC-FM and Mojo from WKQI’s Mojo in the Morning assisted with the Operation Backpack effort.

With the support of Kroger, viewers and listeners were encouraged to visit a local Kroger store to purchase and donate a $7 school supply kit and drop it into the bin at the front of stores.

In addition, the three media outlets promoted a “Fill-the-School Bus” effort on August 25, each broadcasting live from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The event took place at a Kroger located in Royal Oak.

All supplies collected went to to Volunteers of America Michigan to be distributed to local children in need.

WKHM-FM & Baker College to Host Community Job Fair

Jackson Radio Works’ WKHM-FM (Jackson)(K-105.3) has teamed up with Baker College to host a job fair on September 12.

Employers and businesses in a variety of industries will be on hand to accept resumes, share information about jobs available and services they provide to those looking for a job or career change. This event is open to the public.

Thr job fair is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the Baker College Campus in Jackson.  As of this writing, the station has 29 participating vendors.

TEGNA Launches ‘Texas Cares’ Initiative to Raise Money for Hurricane Harvey Victims

Is your station or company doing something to help the hurricane victims in Texas?  Let us know about it! Email

On August 28, TEGNA Inc. launched Texas Cares, an initiative to support those in need following Hurricane Harvey. All money raised by TEGNA’s stations will be donated to the Red Cross Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. The TEGNA Foundation has matched the first $100,000 of donations.

TEGNA-owned WZZM-TV (Grand Rapids) is participating in the effort.

“Harvey’s devastation has shattered the lives of millions across Texas,” said Dave Lougee, president and CEO, TEGNA. “Our stations are coming together to serve the greater good of our communities and help those who need it most. Our stations in Texas are providing important, life-saving information and aid during this catastrophic storm. In Houston, while KHOU’s building was flooding, the station continued to provide vital coverage across platforms. I am incredibly proud of the work our stations are doing to keep their communities informed and safe while providing help and relief to those who need it most.”

All 46 TEGNA stations in 38 markets are reaching out in their communities to help raise money for those impacted by Hurricane Harvey. As part of the Texas Cares initiatives, all stations are running stories on-air and across social media informing viewers how they can help. All stations have a dedicated donation page on their website. Donations to the Texas Cares initiative are tax deductible and proceeds will go to the Red Cross Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund.

The company reported that in the first 24-hours of fundraising, over one million dollars has been raised.

WXYZ and WMYD Take Action for Texas

Is your station or company doing something to help the hurricane victims in Texas?  Let us know about it! Email

In the midst of the unprecedented destruction from Hurricane Harvey, WXYZ-TV and WMYD-TV in Detroit have taken action for Texas with a multi-platform relief effort that includes a special volunteer phone bank to assist in this time of great need.

WXYZ and WMYD partnered with the Red Cross of Michigan to staff a phone bank that gives viewers the opportunity to help. Phone lines were open this past Monday (August 28) for four hours and all day Tuesday (August 29) from 6 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Red Cross of Michigan volunteers joined WXYZ and WMYD employees to help Metro Detroiters who want to donate to the relief effort.

“Our team is passionate about helping those in need,” said WXYZ and WMYD vice president and general manager Mike Murri. “We believe we can be a catalyst to encourage Metro Detroiters to donate in support of this important relief effort. We know the generous people of this community are committed to helping make a difference in the lives of the people in Texas.”


Beasley Media Group Unveils Company-Wide Community of Caring Initiative

Beasley Media Group, Inc., a subsidiary of Beasley Broadcast Group, Inc. has announced the unveiling of a company-wide “Community of Caring” Public Service initiative that will run throughout the organization’s 63 radio stations.

The initiative will consist of several aspects. A rotating PSA series will be aimed at shining a spotlight on important issues impacting their communities. Topics will range from the on-going opioid epidemic and bullying to racism and mental health awareness. The public service announcements also will be supported via social
media campaigns.

In addition, Beasley Media Group will host specific “Day of Caring” events throughout the year in which teams, made up of employees from each market, will adopt non-profit organizations within the communities they serve and volunteer during company supported work hours over the course of the year in an effort to make a difference for those in need.

In Michigan, Beasley owns and operates WCSX-FM, WRIF-FM and WMGC-FM, all in Detroit.

“As a company, we take all of these issues very seriously,” said Caroline Beasley, Chief Executive Officer of Beasley Media Group. “The rotating PSA and social media campaigns, combined with our Day of Caring events across all of our markets, underscores our company’s strong commitment to making a difference in the
communities we serve.”

WQHH-FM Hosts Fourth Annual Backpack Giveaway

WQHH Program Director/Afternoon Air Personality Ricky Burns with a station fan!

On August 10, MacDonald Broadcasting’s WQHH-FM (Lansing) hosted its fourth annual school backpack giveaway at Waverly High School in Lansing.

The station gave away more than 1,000 backpacks to K-12 students to help them get started with the new school year.  The backpacks were stuffed with pens, pencils, notebooks and other school supplies.

WQHH-FM station personalities and other  staff members were on hand. In addition to the backpack giveaway, the station hosted fun activities like facepainting, a bounce house, a live DJ, food and more.

NAB Recognition: WCZY-FM (Mt. Pleasant)

This article originally appeared in a recent NAB Public Service mailer

Latitude Media’s WCZY-FM (Mt. Pleasant) provided critical coverage as eight inches of rain flooded its listening area from June 23 to 25, causing more than $100 million in damage.

WCZY provided information on the 130 roads that closed as pavement crumbled beneath the water, in addition to broadcasting updates from the head of the emergency management team.

On June 26, WCZY collected donations for the local American Red Cross chapter to assist people staying at a temporary shelter.

“Although our staff is small, they really shined big for our community during this unprecedented crisis,” Owner Bob Peters said . “This is why local radio is so important to the communities we serve and why my wife and I are so proud to be local broadcasters.”

The MAB would like to congratulate Bob & Laurie Peters and their staff for outstanding community service!

WOTV’s Maranda wraps Park Party season in Battle Creek!

WOTV-TV (Battle Creek) Maranda’s Park Parties
traveled to six communities across West Michigan, including an event at Northwestern Middle School in Battle Creek. Around 5,700 children and families turned out at the final Park Party of the summer on July 27, bringing this year’s total party-goers to an estimated 35,800 participants!

Maranda is WOTV “4 Women” kids and family expert. She hosts a weekday half-hour program, “Where You Live.”

“It has been an amazing summer visiting so many wonderful communities across West Michigan and impacting the lives of so many families across our area. We couldn’t do it without the amazing support of our great sponsors from WOOD TV8 and WOTV 4 Women and from the communities we visited. A huge thanks to everyone who joined for Park Party season 2017,” Maranda said.

This year’s Maranda Park Party season was full of free fun and lots of great giveaways! In a partnership with the Michigan Department of Education and local area school districts, more than 13,500 free lunches were provided to kids under the age of 18! Maranda’s generous partners also stepped up in a big way. Meijer gave out an estimated 25,000 packs of fruit snacks, Priority Health painted the park green- outfitting kids with more than 28,000 brightly colored backpacks and kids were able to keep cool thanks to 30,000 Country Fresh ice cream sandwiches and 40,000 bottles of Aquafina water provided by Pepsi.

Maranda and the team passed out 20,000 bags of Cheeze Kurls and nearly 2,500 prizes! It was a picture perfect forecast for the entire park party lineup resulting in almost 36,000 smiling faces! This season Maranda and the Park Party crew visited the following locations:

  • June 22 – Lamar Park, Wyoming
  • June 29 – Smith Ryerson Park, Muskegon
  • July 6 – Bronson Park, Kalamazoo
  • July 13 – East Kentwood High School, Kentwood
  • July 20 – Kollen Park, Holland
  • July 27 – Northwestern Middle School, Battle Creek

WKHM Raises Thousands for Area Charities

K-105.3 (WKHM-FM) and NewsTalk 970AM/101.5FM (WKHM-AM) (Jackson)
hosted their annual Live Radio Charity Auction on July 20 from 7:30 to 9 a.m.

A total of 31 area businesses and organizations participated by donating items for listeners to place bids on by calling in to the radio station.

Radio co-hosts Scott Clow & Mallory Sullivan of the K-105.3 Morning Show were joined in the studio by Greg O’Connor, host
of “AM Jackson” on NewsTalk, describing items on-air and taking bids from callers. The auction was simulcast on both

“It’s a complete flurry of chaos in the studio but so much fun. Easily one of my favorite events of the year,” said station Promotions
Director Ashley Smith.  A grand total of $3,175 was raised and will be split equally between two local charities:  American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life and the Salvation Army.