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New York, New York - October 5, 2010 – Celebrities from film, sports, television and music have donated their time and talents to support the 2010 Thanks and Giving campaign, an annual holiday program to build awareness and raise funds for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. For the first time, Miami Heat great Dwyane Wade, Olympic gold medalist Shaun White, Univision’s Angelica Vale and comedian and late-night host George Lopez have joined the roster of prominent personalities who have lent their voices to ask consumers to "Give thanks for the healthy kids in your life, and give to those who are not" during the holiday shopping season by participating, alongside St. Jude patients, in national spots on television and in theatres. The announcement was made today by Marlo Thomas, national outreach director for St. Jude.
Jennifer Aniston, Robin Williams, Morgan Freeman and Luis Fonsi return this year to star with patients in the nationally televised campaign. The awareness and funds generated through Thanks and Giving are critical to support the lifesaving treatments being done at St. Jude to help children fighting cancer and other catastrophic diseases. The Thanks and Giving campaign begins Thanksgiving week and runs through the end of the year.
"I am so grateful for the generous spirit and compassion that we receive from our fabulous family of stars," said Marlo Thomas. "Everyone at St. Jude is so happy and proud to have their ongoing support. Their boundless commitment to St. Jude helps us raise the funds that bring hope to so many children and their moms and dads."
"It's a privilege each year to work on the St. Jude Thanks and Giving campaign with such strong, beautiful children like Jordyn who was in the TV spot with me this year," said Jennifer Aniston. "Their bravery as they face the fight of their young lives is truly inspiring. It's been an honor to be part of this team that is helping to save the lives of children in communities across America. Being a part of the St. Jude family is truly a rewarding gift in my life."
"I was honored that St. Jude asked me to join the Thanks and Giving campaign this year," said Dwyane Wade. "On the court, I deal with really tough opposition, but St. Jude patients Kaelyn and Cameron are among the most resilient people I've ever met. They don't let their disease get them down."
"I'm honored to be involved in the St. Jude Thanks and Giving campaign this year," said Shaun White. "I've been to the hospital several times meeting with the kids and their families. Each time I visit, I am amazed at the work being done by St. Jude and it means a lot to me to be involved."
GRAMMY® winners Lady Antebellum make their debut this year in the Thanks and Giving campaign. The group joins Keith Urban in recording national radio spots that can be heard on more than 200 stations across the country during the holiday season.
Luis Fonsi returns to the Thanks and Giving initiative, along with first time participant Angelica Vale, in televised spots that will run on Spanish-language stations in the United States. They have also recorded radio spots that will run in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
"It's an honor to be a part of the Thanks and Giving campaign for the second consecutive year and to help support the lifesaving work being done at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital," said Fonsi. "I hope to inspire the Hispanic community to help us in the battle against cancer by donating during this holiday season."
The campaign's television spots will air across broadcast, Hispanic and cable networks in English and Spanish, and a 60-second movie trailer will be featured on movie screens nationwide, as well as on American Airlines and Delta Air Lines flights. The St. Jude Thanks and Giving celebrities will also appear in online banner ads.
In addition to the stars in the television spots, Katharine McPhee, Julianne Hough, Jewel, Danny Gokey and Jo Dee Messina, will participate in the Thanks and Giving online campaign. The celebrities will provide content that will be shared on www.stjude.org, such as personal photos of themselves with patients and video footage at the hospital. Additionally, the celebrities will tweet updates about the campaign and utilize their own social networking sites to raise awareness and drive traffic to www.stjude.org. More celebrities are expected to be announced during the Thanks and Giving campaign launch in November.
The Thanks and Giving initiative was created in 2004 by Marlo Thomas and her siblings Terre and Tony Thomas, children of St. Jude founder Danny Thomas, to build awareness and raise funds for St. Jude during a season that exemplifies thanks and giving to so many. The funds raised by the campaign impact the lives of children in communities across the country. Consumers are asked to shop at companies where the St. Jude Thanks and Giving green magnifying glass logo is displayed; donate online at www.stjude.org, or purchase specialty merchandise created by the partners to support the campaign. A list of fundraising partners is available at www.stjude.org or call 1-800-4STJUDE (1-800-478-5833); or in Spanish by logging onto www.dargracias.org or calling 1-800-2STJUDE (1-800-278-5833).
About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital:
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases. St. Jude is the first and only pediatric cancer center to be designated as a Comprehensive Cancer Center by the National Cancer Institute. Founded by late entertainer Danny Thomas and based in Memphis, Tenn., St. Jude freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. St. Jude is the only pediatric cancer research center where families never pay for treatment not covered by insurance. No child is ever denied treatment because of the family's inability to pay. St. Jude is financially supported by ALSAC, its fundraising organization. In 2010, St. Jude was ranked the most trusted charity in the nation in a public survey conducted by Harris Interactive, a highly respected international polling and research firm. St. Jude was also named the nation's top children's cancer hospital in the 2010-11 Best Children's Hospitals rankings published by U.S. News & World Report. For more information, go to www.stjude.org and follow St. Jude on www.facebook.com/stjude and www.twitter.com/stjude.