Category Archives: Connecting to Local Communities

WLNS News Crew Helps Clean Up Lansing

(L-R) WLNS' Emily Wahls, Sheri Jones and Chivon Kloepfer
(L-R) WLNS’ Emily Wahls, Sheri Jones and Chivon Kloepfer

On May 6, members of the WLNS-TV (Lansing) news staff helped Habitat for Humanity’s “Rock The Block” day in Lansing.

WLNS anchors Sheri Jones and Chivon Kloepfer, along with meteorologist Emily Wahls, joined other companies and organizations and offered a days worth of sweat to help clean up, paint, and repair homes and yards in Lansing’s Old Town area.

The project helps residents get their home redone, but in return those residents are encouraged to help others in their neighborhood.

Blarney Stone Broadcasting Holds Town Hall On Underage Drinking/RX Drug Abuse

WQONBlarney Stone Broadcasting (Grayling) joined forces with local leaders and law enforcement officials in hosting a town hall meeting to address the perils of underage drinking and substance abuse.

On May 13, the company’s WQON-FM committed its entire Northern Focus show to the Underage Drinking/RX Drug Abuse Town Hall Meeting at its Grayling studios. In partnership with Up North Prevention and Crawford County Partnership for Substance Abuse Awareness (CPSAA), WQON’s Dave Sherbert moderated the panel during his Friday morning talk show. The panel included Crawford County Prosecutor Everette (Trey) Ayers, Assistant Prosecutor Brendan Curran, Michigan State Police Trooper Grant Guzikowski, insurance representative Paul Hartman, substance abuse counselor Doug Pryor and guests who shared their personal testimonials.

With the program airing during the school day, the target audience was the parents of teens.  The program will be made available to students via a podcast at a later date.

Lynda Rutkowski, Designated Youth Tobacco Use Representative/Prevention Specialist for Up North Prevention said that their goal was to “heighten awareness of the underage drinking and prescription drug problems in the community, what’s currently happening, systems in place to curtail the problem, and words of wisdom for our youth and their parents.”

Sheryl Coyne, President of Blarney Stone Broadcasting, said her radio network is proud to serve as host of such an important event designed to raise awareness of a growing problem in today’s society.

“We believe in the young people in our listening community, and if we can arm them with the right information about alcohol and various illegal and prescription drugs then we’re confident they can make smarter and better decisions,” Coyne said. “We’re in the communications business, and we take that seriously. We believe passionately that to bring this important issue into focus is the best use of our airwaves.”

Related:  Read the Radio Ink interview here with Sheryl Coyne regarding the Town Hall Meeting and the company’s community service efforts.

WPBN/WTOM-TV Hosts Town Hall Meeting

WPBN_400On May 4, WPBN/WTOM-TV (Traverse City), along with Northern Michigan Regional entity and UpNorthLive.com, presented Finding a Solution, a Prescription Drug Abuse Town Hall Meeting at the Dennos Museum Center’s Milliken Auditorium in Traverse City.

The discussion focused on prevention and included use and misuse of prescription opiates, and the rising trend of illicit opiate use and overdoses.

WPBN/WTOM-TV News Anchors Marc Schollett and Kristen Lowe moderated the discussion and WGTU/WGTQ-TV (Traverse City) News Anchor Jamie Innis provided updates throughout the meeting on UpNorthLive’s Facebook and Twitter feeds.

WLEN-FM Hosts Auction to Raise Money for Local Lions Club

WLENOn April 23, Lenawee Broadcasting’s WLEN-FM (Adrian) will host and air an all-day radio auction for the Adrian Breakfast Lions Club.  Lions Club members will be auctioning off merchandise and services donated by businesses, individuals, and organizations. The merchandise and services will be described on-the-air and listeners will bid by telephone. Every business that donates will have its name mentioned along with the item.

In the past 19 years, the auction has raised over $211,000 to help citizens needing assistance in our community. They have provided over $120,000 in vision care, $22,000 in scholarships and classroom supplies for the visually impaired, $20,000 for supporting youth projects, and $19,000 for the Leader Dog program of Michigan.

NABEF Announces 2016 Service to America Award Winners; Michigan Broadcaster to be Honored

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On April 4, The National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation (NABEF) announced the winners of the 2016 Celebration of Service to America Awards, recognizing outstanding community service by local broadcasters. Winners will be honored at the Celebration of Service to America dinner, held Tuesday, June 21 at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium in Washington, D.C.

“Local broadcasters are an essential part of the fabric of their communities,” said NABEF President Marcellus Alexander. “The NAB Education Foundation proudly salutes the recipients of this years’ Service to America Awards for their unwavering commitment to making a positive local impact.”

Among the winners nationwide, CBS Radio’s WXYT-FM (Detroit) will receive the Service to Children Award (for radio).  These awards spotlight television and radio stations for outstanding programs, campaigns and public service announcements produced for the benefit of children.

Since 2012, WXYT’s Student Heart Check program has helped raise money and awareness for student athletes at risk of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy – an acute life threatening heart condition. The vital program saves lives every year, conducting quarterly student heart screenings at local high schools where physicians participate for free and students from across the state are invited to attend. In 2015, more than 1,600 students received screenings, resulting in 234 students being advised to stop playing sports immediately. Two students were diagnosed with the condition. Produced in partnership with Beaumont Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network, WXYT led and supported the program with multiple public service announcements, valued at $1.1 million. The informative PSAs requested $10 donations from listeners to help the program reach its ultimate goal of purchasing a mobile cardiac unit. In 2015, the campaign raised a respectable $30,000 in donations and additional sponsor outreach.

 

WZZM-TV Wins TEGNA Community Empowerment Award

WZZM_400WZZM-TV (Grand Rapids) has been awarded the Community Empowerment Award from its parent company, TEGNA Inc., during the annual TEGNA Employee Awards ceremony at TEGNA corporate headquarters in McLean, VA.

“We had a tremendous year with excellent work being done every day across our company,” said Gracia Martore, president and CEO, TEGNA. “It is always an honor to celebrate the creative, innovative and inspiring work that better serves our customers, clients and communities. Today’s award winners set the bar very high and I congratulate them for their outstanding performance and dedication to our company.”

“The team at WZZM really focuses on community empowerment and 2015 provided some wonderful opportunities to demonstrate that commitment,” said Catherine Behrendt, Programming and Community Director. “We have a couple of long-term projects we do every year, but we also make it a point to listen to our community and respond when the situation warrants. Ours is a strong example of collaboration, advocacy, passion and pride in a community we love.”

Some examples of WZZM’s Community Empowerment:

Warm a Heart, Heat a Home
Just Drive
Make a Difference Day-Bone Marrow Registration Drive
13 Food for Families
13 Friends for Life
Toys for Tots

WDIV-TV’s (Detroit) “Help Me Hank” Offers Free Tax Advice

WDIV-032816_500On March 22, WDIV-TV’s “Help Me Hank” consumer unit hosted a phone bank offering viewers free tax advice.

The Michigan Association of CPAs (MICPA) provided a team of experts to answer viewer questions.

According to the station, the MICPA has been around since 1901. It has more than 17,500 members and is considered the leading statewide professional organization dedicated to promoting the value of the CPA profession. Each member meets strict statutory and regulatory requirements. They embrace the highest standards of professional and ethical performance.

Telethon for Flint Raises Over $1.1 Million

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MAB President/CEO Karole White (back row, third from right) answers telephone calls during the Flint Telethon.

Last Tuesday (3/15), people from across Michigan opened up their hearts and wallets to help the children affected by the water crisis in Flint.

WDIV-TV (Detroit) and four other television stations across Michigan, WEYI-TV (Flint), WILX-TV (Lansing), WOOD-TV (Grand Rapids) and WWTV/WWUP-TV (Northern Michigan), joined for the day-long telethon: Flint Water Crisis: For Our Families.

With a matching donation from Detroit Pistons’ owner Tom Gores, a grand total of $1,133,964 was raised during the telethon.

All proceeds will go to the Flint Child Health and Development Fund to help with things like education, nutrition and medical intervention.

MAB President and CEO Karole White pitched in to answer phones during the event.

WWJ-AM Raises $1.5 Million for THAW

WWJThaw3_500On February 12, CBS Radio’s WWJ-AM Detroit raised $1.5 million in the 13th annual “Winter Survival Radiothon” for The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW) . The money was raised over a 14-hour period.  THAW provides emergency energy assistance to families in financial crisis due to job loss or serious illness.

THAW’s utility partners match every dollar raised.

Since 2004, WWJ’s Winter Survival Radiothon has raised more than $12 million in cash and utility match for THAW.  Photo credit: Marisa Fusinski/WWJ