Skip to comments.MDA Primetime Telethon Achieves $61.5 Million (included a tribute to Jerry Lewis at the beginning)
Posted on 09/05/2011 5:29:51 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
LAS VEGAS, Sept. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The new era of primetime Muscular Dystrophy Association Telethons has started. In six primetime hours last night, the organization leading the fight against progressive muscle diseases delivered on its promise of an outstanding 46th annual MDA Labor Day Telethon. MDA today announced that its 2011 Telethon raised $61,491,393 -- up from the $58,919,838 achieved during the prior year's 21.5-hour Telethon.
This is the biggest Telethon achievement since 2008, when the global recession began. Contributions can still be made online at mda.org or by calling 800-FIGHTMD (800-344-4863).
"We're so grateful to everyone who made this amazing outcome possible," said MDA President & CEO Gerald C. Weinberg. "Kudos must go to our four outstanding Telethon co-hosts, to the entertainment icons performing and making persuasive appeals, to our incredible cause-marketing partners, to more than 150 television stations comprising the 'Love Network,' and to generous Americans in every community. Together, we've confirmed that primetime is where our Telethon can achieve the most for the families we serve."
The landmark primetime benefit opened with inspiring remarks about Jerry Lewis by the Telethon's four co-hosts. Later in the first hour, Celine Dion, also saluted her "dear friend Jerry Lewis," and then sang "Open Arms."
The fast-paced show featured Billboard chart toppers including Lady Antebellum, Boyz II Men, Darius Rucker, Richie Sambora, Martina McBride and Jordin Sparks. Their masterful performances and many more, along with special appeals by Ryan Seacrest, Jennifer Lopez, Steven Tyler, Randy Jackson, Barbara Walters, Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, Sherri Shepherd, Elisabeth Hasselbeck, NBA great Dwight Howard, as well as NFL stars Reggie Bush and Kurt Warner helped galvanize America into action for MDA.
R. Rodney Howell, M.D., Chairman of the MDA Board of Directors said, "The tremendous success of the Telethon, even in a tough economy where some communities are also being challenged by natural disasters, shows that America understands and appreciates the truly rapid progress being made by MDA-funded researchers worldwide.
More and more clinical trials are underway, testing potential therapeutics, so now truly is the time to invest even more in lifesaving research. Together, we can speed treatments and cures for progressive muscle diseases."
The MDA Labor Day Telethon originated for the sixth year from the South Point Hotel in Las Vegas. Co-hosts for the incredibly successful network show watched by tens of millions viewers were Nigel Lythgoe (American Idol + So You Think You Can Dance), Nancy O'Dell (Entertainment Tonight), Alison Sweeney (NBC's The Biggest Loser and author of The Mommy Diet), and Jann Carl (Emmy-winning journalist and independent producer). The New York City telecast was hosted by Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Ace Young, and the Chicago telecast was co-hosted by Olympic Gold medalists Nadia Comaneci and Bart Conner.
People in more than 20 countries also watched the Telethon stream at www.mda.org, where behind the scenes moments, bonus performance tracks, and Telethon highlights can still be seen on demand.
The family of MDA sponsors includes: Acosta, Augie's Quest, Bally Total Fitness, Burger King, CITGO, Clear Channel Radio, ClubCorp, ERA, DECA, Dr. Pepper/Seven Up, Harley-Davidson Motor Co., International Association of Fire Fighters, Jiffy Lube, Kappa Alpha Order, Lowe's Home Improvement, National Beta Club, National Association of Letter Carriers, National Coalition of Associations of 7-Eleven Franchisees, Popeye's Louisiana Kitchen, 7-Eleven of Oklahoma, Safeway, Tall Cedars of Lebanon of North America, Universal Cheerleaders Association, Valero Energy Corporation, and Walgreen's.
See here also:
they only had about 6 hours of TV coverage this year...have no idea how they pulled in all the $$$..
It appears they did better this year without Jerry than they did last year with him. Apparently, the petty comedian didn’t bother to show up for a filming of a tribute to him.
Nice to see that they made a killing in just 6 hours without Jerry. Now I don’t feel so bad about not donating this year.
They raise money all year not just during the telethon. They just tabulate all that they have raised during the telecast. I know there are MDA events here all the time not just around Labor Day.
Perhaps they combined the corporate money with the viewer call ins. That was not how Jerry Lewis counted it.
Historically the tote-board never included the checks handed to Jerry from fire fighters, Exxon, Seven Eleven and other corps. Corporation money was at least as much as the separate tote-board total of the call ins from people like you and me.
After the telethon on the news you would get the grand total of the tote-board total plus the corporation total and it exceeded well over $100 million.
I think the anti-corporation liberals have taken over the Telethon. Jerry Lewis never had a problem with corporations coming on live national TV and plugging their own company as long as they were handing him a check for the cause.
I did not watch the telethon but I suspect all the corporation appearances were cut from this year's telethon.
If I am correct and this $61.5 million is THE grand total. They did badly.
wasn’t it usually four times that amount?? just don’t understand why they cut the TV time so much...
You may be correct. I knew it was at least as much as the tote-board amount possibly double but it could also have been four times that.
I have a hunch the new guy at the MDA (the one Jerry Lewis has had some heated discussions with lately) is one of those anti-corporation Phil Donahue types.
Much of the telethon time with Jerry would be corporation reps coming on stage and handing him checks
I don’t believe for a second they surpassed any telethon in the last 10 years.
I did know that they would claim to, using accounting tricks.
Obama will want to check this out.....I gave $5.
20 years ao and still get asked every year ...but they
get some real big dough because they work on the big donors
for weeks and months until they sqeeze a big $$$$$$$$$ from
them. Have they ever released an audit? never seen it
and I wonder where my $5. ended up? JK
As I watched the final MDA video tribute to Jerry Lewis again, I realized what was missing. Over the years, Jerry joined his guests on stage, interacted with them, acted silly with them and interacted with the kids showing his love and concern. That did not happen this year. I saw only bits and pieces but felt something missing. If they retired Jerry they should retire his telethon and find a new updated way to raise money for this worthy cause in this next century.
If they continue, they should start now to find a new host. Someone personable like (maybe) Jack Black, or some other comedian (Jim Carrey??) to add some life, spunk, and interaction. The victims of this disease deserve better, just as Jerry did.
Jim Carrey would be the closest to a Jerry Lewis we have today (the style of comedy).
I'm sure you can get that info online. I will say that in the past (I can't speak for post Jerry Lewis MDA) the MDA was one organization that got the most bang for the buck. In other words, most of the money went directly to the cause with not as much administrative money coming out in comparison with other charity organizations.
George Bush, Ronald Reagan and other past Presidents have also noted this.
That number is the amount collected all year. It is not posible to raise that much money through pledges within a 24hr period.
This was revealed msany years ago. The show with the tension of time ticking was all an act. They knew their number with whatever pledges came through during the telethon.
Not many people know that, but in 1977 Jerry Lewis was Nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, by US Representative Les Aspin.
Aspin noted that in 11 years, the MDA Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon had raised more than $95 million for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (he has of course, raised several orders of a magnitude more than that since the nomination).
While Jerry still has breath within him, I believe it would be appropriate for him to win a Nobel Peace Prize.
Hey, if the terrorist Yaser Arafat, the bloviator Al Gore and Barack Obama (who essentially won for nothing) can win that prize, why not Jerry Lewis? At least it would be more deserving...
Only problem... maybe two.
Jerry Lewis is Jewish. I don’t think they give those to jews these days. Furthermore, Jerry Lewis is no fan of the United Nations and so those that give out those prizes probably would not share the same opinions.
I guess you need to be a globalist, pro-UN, anti-American, pro-islamic radical to get those things these days
I think you will find that this year they combined the Corporate donations with the call-ins from viewers to get that grand total.
The total they are quoting from last year was ONLY viewer call-ins (people like you and me) who call and give $5, $10 or $20.
Add Jerry's grand total (viewer call ins + corp money) and you'll get over $200 million as a grand total.
The new MDA may also be adding the whole year's worth of online donations to that total as well.
Fuzzy numbers if you ask me.
Next time MS has their 3 or 4 hour telethon watch the total. The last time I watched I think it was something like $3 million.
Not even Justin Beiber could pull in 61 million in 6 hours.
Fuzzy numbers. I think the liberal democrats have taken over the MDA telethon.
No donations will come from our household. MDA is done.
After telling him that he wasn’t wanted, they had the nerve to trade on his name?
The Cash or the Cure.
Thats right - they sh*t-canned Jerry, then tried to make things "right" by claiming that he would sing "You'll Never Walk Alone" [live or on-tape, I don't know] at the finale.
That was a BOGUS claim according to Jerry's press agent. He NEVER agreed to do it - although MDA DID post on its web site that he would do the song.
They raise money for a good cause - but I got NO RESPECT for those rat bastards that 86'd Jerry like yesterday's shoes. Nice move, treating the guy who has raised over $2 BILLION for you like that ...
On Jerry's part, he said that he supported and would always support MDA [refusing to bad-mouth them over their treatment of him - when he had the chance in an interview]. Jerry's a CLASS ACT - too bad we can't say the same of the MDA Board ...
They get commitments throughout the year. They probably knew an approx amt before it began.
Though Jerry never collected a wage or stipend I speculate that he charged all of his “business” costs to MDA.
To save embarrassment the MDA said Jerry retired from the telethon. i do not believe that for a minute.