Original Berkshire Hathaway Pennants on Sale to Benefit Douglas County Nebraska CASA

May 1, 2014

This is a big week for Business Wire as our team heads to our parent company, Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in Omaha, Nebraska. For the last seven years, Business Wire has used attendance at the annual conference as a platform to raise funds for CASA, a charitable organization that provides a voice for abused and neglected children within the court system via trained citizen volunteers.   This year is no different.

Berkshire Hathaway Sluggers baseball pennants

Berkshire Hathaway Sluggers baseball pennants

For 2014, Business Wire is raising money by selling original Berkshire Hathaway Sluggers baseball pennants, available for $7 each or two for $10.

“For seven years we have proudly participated at the Berkshire annual meeting while helping out with a worthy cause like CASA. In the spirit of this year’s baseball theme we will take our metaphorical seventh-inning stretch by contributing to charity,” said Cathy Baron Tamraz, chairwoman and chief executive officer of Business Wire.

Douglas County Nebraska CASA was established in 1998 at the urging of area judges. CASA was created under the premise that there must be an advocate for children within the court system–someone who will fight and keep the child’s best interests at heart. It is the CASA volunteer that helps judges make good decisions on behalf of these abused children.

“What a great opportunity to raise awareness while generating much-needed funds to support advocates for children within the court system. Every dollar that Business Wire raises ultimately helps transform a child’s future,” said Kimberly Thomas, Executive Director of CASA for Douglas County.

The pennants are available at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in Omaha or can be purchased online: http://bit.ly/BRKPennant

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Business Wire Boston Finds a Unique Way to Give Back – One Casual Day at a Time

December 23, 2013

By Tim Ragan, Client Services Representative, Business Wire Boston

With the holidays breathing down everyone’s neck, it is impossible not to feel beat down. Here in the Boston Office, we can feel the heat of the season just like everyone else. In order to alleviate some insanity, our team has thought of a way to both enjoy the comforts of the holiday as well as providing a chance to give back.

The introduction of our Holiday Casual Days is a great way to make both our office and others happy as well.

Meet Business Wire Boston

Most people enjoy the relaxation of Friday, so why not extend that the weeks entering the holidays? For December, any colleague was able to pay $1 for a casual day and everyone in Boston broke out the jeans for a more casual Business Wire office!

An additional benefit from all of this fun, the money we collected has been donated in order to purchase numerous Disney princess items for a Kindergartener who has never experienced a Christmas morning. With this relaxing strategy, our colleagues were able to come together and do something rewarding during this season.

Donations from BW Boston

What holiday plans are in store for your office this year?


Business Wire Gives Back with Contribution to Journalism Scholarship

June 24, 2013
by Matt Allinson, International Media Relations Supervisor
Matthew Allinson

Matt Allinson

At the 2013 Western Washington chapter of the Society of Professional Journalist’s annual awards gala, Pacific Lutheran University journalism student Leah Traxel picked up a scholarship and recognition as an up-and-comer in the world of journalism. Business Wire was there and was honored to have the opportunity to contribute to the scholarship awarded to Ms. Traxel.

Ms. Traxel, a third year student, currently works part-time for The News Tribune (Tacoma) and is also the Journalism Team Leader for MediaLab, an on-campus multimedia agency and applied internship program. Upon completion of her degree at PLU, Ms. Traxel hopes to pursue post-graduate studies in digital media and would one day like to teach.

I had a chance to catch up with Ms. Traxel after the event and she was gracious enough to answer a few questions for us.

International Media Relations Supervisor Matt Allinson and scholarship winner Leah Traxel

International Media Relations Supervisor Matt Allinson and scholarship winner Leah Traxel

1) Who or what inspired you to study journalism and pursue it as a career?

I had no idea I wanted to be a journalist until I took a class from Robert Wells, a former journalist who saw my writing and asked if I had considered the field. I hadn’t, but I’ve always been a successful writer, and I knew I didn’t want to get stuck doing one thing over and over again as a career, so journalism seemed like a good option. Rob hooked me up with a couple of local weekly papers, and I started freelancing the fall of my sophomore year.

2) How can you and your generation help the journalism industry successfully transition into the digital world?

I really believe Marc Prensky hit the mark with his comparison of digital “natives” and “immigrants”. My generation is definitely one of natives, and as with any skill, it’s our responsibility to share it with previous generations. 

I think my generation can help journalism transition by working as an example of how citizens and journalists can work together to produce the best coverage. Citizen journalists on their own can be irresponsible, but journalists on their own are slowly becoming obsolete. I think the best course of action would be to utilize the strengths of both practices, and create relevant, accurate, and useful content for the public.

3) What will you be doing this summer?

This summer I am interning at The News Tribune and at PLU’s University Communications.

4) Where would you like to be seven years from now?

Seven years from now, I would like to be reporting on technology, and maybe using my background in math and computer science to do some technical writing.

5) If you were somehow able to capture the first verified photo of a Sasquatch while on a hike, where would you publish it first?

If I had the first photo of Sasquatch, I would probably publish it in National Geographic. However, I would only do that if it was determined that s/he could be a threat to public safety or if publication could prevent him/her from coming to harm. If s/he has gone to that much trouble to stay hidden for this long, it wouldn’t feel right to exploit him/her for personal gain or notoriety.

We wish Ms. Traxel the very best in her future endeavors and feel confident, with people like her in the profession, that journalism is in good hands moving forward.


Business Wire Gives Back: Charlotte Staffers Support Library through Rock & Read 5K Run

November 15, 2011

Established in 1982, the Friends of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, its collections, programs and services. Recent budget difficulties have highlighted the need for the community to come together in assisting local government to maintain traditional levels of service throughout the library system.

The Friends’ mission is to support the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library as a vocal advocate before elected officials, community leaders and citizens at large and to raise funds to help achieve a level of excellence. The Friends’ 2nd Annual Rock & Read 5K Run/Walk is a fun community initiative to help raise awareness and funds for the community libraries. Katie McKiever, new (and former) CH editor, is on the Friends of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library board and was co-chair on the planning committee for the 5K.

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This year’s event had 300 runners and raised $20,000 that will be used specifically towards supplementing the library’s book collections. The Rock & Read 5K utilized dozens of volunteers from the area who were vital in helping make the event a success.

Cedric Tillman, CH newsroom supervisor, was one of those volunteers. The event was fun for all ages. The race started and finished in front of Charlotte’s Scaleybark library branch. Rufus, the Charlotte Bobcats NBA mascot, and Chubby, the Charlotte Checkers Hockey team mascot were in attendance along with a number of food vendors and the U.S. National Whitewater Rafting Center.

Find out more: http://cmlibraryfriends.org/

Photos courtesy of Bryan Bazemore Photography (http://bryanbazemorephotography.blogspot.com/)


Business Wire Gives Back: Texas Butterfly Fan Uses Social Media as Monarch Butterfly Ambassador

October 17, 2011

I’m lucky that my job as Vice President of New Media for Business Wire has allowed me to apply the useful skills  learned in my professional life to a passion for butterflies.   For the past several years I’ve blogged about butterflies at www.texasbutterflyranch.com, provided updates on the Monarch butterfly migration as

Tagged Monarch Butterfly, September 2011

Tagged Monarch Butterfly, September 2011

@butterflybeat on Twitter, and used my Powerpoint prowess to share the daily miracle of metamorphosis with children, gardeners, seniors and others.  I’ve also raised caterpillars (butterflies-to-be) in my kitchen and brought them to work when they’re about to “go chrysalis” on me, much to my colleagues’ amusement.

Recently I had another amazing opportunity to spread the butterfly gospel, thanks to Business Wire’s generous BW Gives Back program.  Organizers of the Amazing Butterflies Exhibit at the San Antonio Botanical Garden (SABOT) invited me to lead a butterfly hunt, demonstrate how to tag a Monarch butterfly, and share the beloved insects’ remarkable migration story.

SABOT’s educational exhibit, which runs through January 8, leads participants through a garden maze in which they can simulate life as a caterpillar, then a butterfly, gaining insight about the life cycle along the way.

About 30 nature lovers attended the talk, admiring Monarch eggs and caterpillars collected along the Llano River in the Texas Hill Country.  Prior, we netted a Monarch butterfly in SABOT’s lovely butterfly garden and finished up the presentation with a tagging demonstration.

Monika Maeckle at San Antonio Botanical Gardens

At the San Antonio Botanical Garden: Let's go tag some Monarch Butterflies! --photo by Mary Fisher

For those unaware, Monarch butterflies make an amazing migratory journey from  Michoacan, Mexico each year, starting in April and flying north to Canada.  Over the course of multiple generations, the resilient creatures traverse the eastern United States to Canada in the Spring, their great great grandchildren returning in the Fall to their ancestral winter roosts in Mexico.  April and October are primetime for Monarch butterfly fans in Texas, which is the “funnel” for all Monarch traffic, north and southbound.

Metamorphosis, mediamorphisis–when you think about it, the two have much in common: constant change, endless fascination, reflections of ourselves.    Thanks to Business Wire for allowing me the opportunity to marry the two passions that most consume my time at work and after hours.


Business Wire Gives Back: BW Staff Helps Grow Miracle Gardens on Chicago’s South Side

September 16, 2011
 
by Abbie Sullivan, Client Services Representative
 
Eight Business Wire Chicago employees volunteered recently to help create an edible landscape  located at the Gary Comer Youth Center (GCYC) in the Grand Crossing neighborhood on Chicago’s south side.   The effort was made on behalf of the Make Miracles Grow Youth Garden and was associated with Business Wire 50th Anniversary Give Back program.
 
Chicago office members Matt Blouin, Global Media Relations Manager Raschanda Hall, Editors Christina Jahnke, Colin MacLaughlin and Arunas Statkus, Senior Editor Yvonne Moy, Regional Manager Elaine Stiles, and CSR Abbie Sullivan spent time turning dirt, planting apple trees, harvesting cucumbers and tomatoes and completing gardening chores like mulching, watering and fertilizing.
 
 

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The gardening investment will pay off in fresh fruits and vegetables for the neighborhood, which is considered one of the city’s “Food Deserts.”  Grand Crossing’s 2,500 residents must travel .81 mile to buy fresh produce from a small grocer, yet only .32 mile to a fast food outlet. Located within the community and adjacent to GCYC, the Make Miracles Grow Foundation is working in partnership with GCYC to redevelop two acres of a vacant former industrial property into an urban farm.
 
The Make Miracles Grow Foundation is dedicated to urban agriculture and youth education on Chicago’s south side. The Make Miracles Grow Youth Garden will serve as a model for sustainable urban farming methods, youth career and education development, economic development and job and food security improvement for the community. The foundation and garden provide residents in the community with a sustainable, green economy that is youth-led and maintained. The youth garden also teaches local sustainability through growing food, culinary arts and community outreach.
 
Find out more about the Gary Comer Youth Center.

In honor of its 50th Anniversary, Business Wire is giving back by providing each of its 500+ employees up to 12 hours of paid time off in 2011 to volunteer with the nonprofit of their choice. Read more about what BW employees are doing to give back.

 
 

BW Gives Back: The Borough of Ramsey 9/11 Remembrance

September 13, 2011

by Alan Asarch, Manager, Licensing and Content Development, Business Wire

Located in Bergen County New Jersey, The Ramsey Wind Symphony is one of the region’s most established wind groups.  Celebrating its 26th Season, the Symphony consists of volunteer participants from all walks of life who love to play and perform music.  Every year, the Symphony holds several concerts for the community, and is invited to participate in seasonal community events.

Since the events of September 11, 2001, the Borough of Ramsey conducts memorial services for the three local residents whose lives were lost on that tragic day.  The Ramsey Wind Symphony provides patriotic and solemn musical interludes as part of the 9/11 Memorial Services, as community leaders speak and those we lost on that tragic day are remembered.

Borough of Ramsey 9/11 Remembrance

Local police and firefighters attend the Borough of Ramsey 9/11 memorial service

On the 10th anniversary of September 11, Ramsey held its memorial ceremony in a remote, peaceful, tree-lined area of Finch Park, which will soon include a beautiful, permanent memorial in remembrance of the 3 residents.  The families who lost loved ones were invited back to participate in the groundbreaking of the memorial.  Only two of the three came.

Also in attendance were the mayor and councilman of Ramsey, and many members of the Police and Fire Departments of Ramsey. In front of one of the firefighters stood a bell, which would ring three times, once for each person the town lost on that fateful day.

Prior to the groundbreaking, the Symphony played patriotic interludes in a somber, rather than celebratory, tone.  The families were invited to light candles in remembrance of their loved ones.

For the first time, I saw with my own eyes families of the victims of that fateful day:  A mother and father who lost a son, and a wife and her children who lost a husband and father.  We all watch the 9/11 ceremonies on television and hear the roll call of names of loved ones who were lost.  Seeing it on television does not have the same impact as observing it in person.  I looked into their eyes as they sat in the front row, stood for the playing of The Star Spangled Banner, and walked to light their candles.  In their eyes, I see straight through to the holes in their hearts that will never be filled and the pain that will never completely heal.  My eyes fill with tears desperately wanting to be shed.

As the ceremony reached its conclusion, the Mayor thanked the Symphony for participating in the service.  The applause was warm, yet unnecessary.  More surprisingly, the families honored on this late Summer day stood for us as they applauded.  It should be the other way around–the Symphony stands for those families,  applauds them, and honors them for their strength and courage.

Memorials for Ramsey, NJ 9/11 victims

Memorials for the three Ramsey residents who lost their lives on 9/11

I walked to the banner that displays the design of the new memorial.  I wanted to speak to the families and look closer into their eyes, offer a simple, thoughtful handshake, and let them know that I share their sadness, even though I was fortunate enough to not lose a loved one on September 11, 2001.  I saw them stare at the model of the memorial, envisioning the names of their loved ones on it, which will be permanently displayed for everyone to see and never forget.  And they deserved to spend this time alone in thought.

Even though I did not speak with the families, I know that the Ramsey Wind Symphony’s participation in the ceremony gave them solace from unimaginable sorrow.  I am honored and grateful to be a part of an organization that gives back so much to its community.

In honor of its 50th Anniversary, Business Wire is giving back by providing each of its 500+ employees up to 12 hours of paid time off in 2011 to volunteer with the nonprofit of their choice. Read more about what BW employees are doing to give back.


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