Long Island Broadcasters Honored for Public Service

We have been highlighting stations that received “Serving New York” Awards at our recent luncheons around the State.  This week we will focus on the stations on Long Island.  As Long Islanders know, “The Island” has its own community issues that are distinct from New York City. The following stations were honored recently at a luncheon held at the famous Blackstone Steakhouse in Melville.

WBAB (Cox Media Group) – Breast Cancer Patient Services at Stony Brook Cancer Center

On Sunday, July 17th, WBAB Afternoon Host, “Fingers” and thousands of Long Island motorcycle enthusiasts took to the streets of Long Island for the 10th Annual WBAB STICKY FINGER RUN, a tribute and fundraiser for Long Islanders fighting Breast Cancer.  Thousands of Long Island Motorcycle Enthusiasts rode in the 10th Annual “WBAB Sticky Finger Run” and raised over $18,400 and awareness for the Breast Cancer Patient Services at Stony Brook Cancer Center.

The run started at Stony Brook Cancer Center and concluded at Shorefront Park in Patchogue where the annual Great South Bay Music Festival was in full swing.  Upon arrival, riders were greeted by a special tribute from the main stage and treated to live music by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee Graham Nash and more.  One hundred percent of net proceeds benefited the Breast Cancer Patient Services at Stony Brook Cancer Center, providing state-of-the-art breast healthcare in surroundings that offer a sense of comfort, privacy, and the assurance that each patient’s individual needs will be met.  Terry Quinn and Ket Kaming accepted the award for the Stonybrook Cancer Center.   Noted DJ “Fingers” along with John Shea, V.P. and General Manager of the Cox Radio Group Long Island (WBLI/WBAB/WHFM) accepted the award for the station.

WBLI (Cox Media Group Long Island) – The Ronald McDonald House of Long Island

Upon the stations first visit to the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island, the team was struck by the immense amount of caring and love that permeated the facility.  This was more than a “house”, this is a place where the healing process begins by removing the obstacles that stand in the way when a family’s life is turned upside down by illness or injury.

Since the station’s first visit, WBLI has felt compelled to assist in the mission of the selfless individuals who dedicate their lives to improving the lives of others.  Ronald McDonald House of Long Island was the official charity for WBLI’s Spring Touch-A-Truck event at Eisenhower Park in May 2016.  Attendees were encouraged to donate items from the “Wish List”, including household supplies, toys and other items.  At the conclusion of the event, the staff delivered a truckload of items to the House, including paper towels and toilet paper, hand soap, non-perishable food and other essentials.

Executive Director Matt Campo and his team, along with a family who was currently staying at the House, were invited to the WBLI Studios to record the station’s “Plugged Into Long Island” public affairs program.  The timing of the broadcast was intended to support their “Walk Of Love 5K Walk/Run” fundraiser, which took place in May 2016.  The show also focused on the emotional toll that grips families when dealing with a sick child and personal stories about how the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island removes some of the fear and financial burden.

Ronald McDonald House of Long Island was selected as one of two featured charities for WBLI’s “Christmas in July” Toy Drive at Adventureland Amusement Park in July 2016.  Thousands of toys were collected during the month and were delivered directly to residents of the House by DJs from BLI, along with Adventureland’s mascot “Alfie Claus” and the members of the staff and ownership of Adventureland.

WBLI’s Digital Video Team visited Ronald McDonald House of Long Island and conducted on-camera interviews with families who stayed at the House.  Parents and children took part in the emotional vignettes, which were shown at their Gala event in September 2016, which was attended by members of the CMGLI team.

The mission of The Ronald McDonald House of Long Island is to give comfort and shelter to families experiencing the pain of having a sick child in local hospital facilities.  A “home away from home”, the House provides the parents and siblings of these children with a temporary haven in a secure and comfortable environment among other families sharing a similar burden. Located on the campus of the Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York, the House accommodates families in a warm and supportive environment.  Since opening in 1986, approximately 18,000 families from the United States and more than 80 countries around the world have been served.  Many of the families are from Long Island and other parts of the Metropolitan area.  Matthew Campo, President of the Ronald McDonald House Long Island, and Deepika Thadhani from the Ronald McDonald House, accepted the award.

WALK 97.5 (Connoisseur Media Long Island) –  Men’s Health Cancer Awareness – “Movember Foundation”

“Movember” is a campaign to leave an everlasting impact on the face of men’s health. Men experience worse longer-term health than women and die on average six years earlier.  Prostate cancer rates will double in the next 15 years.  Testicular cancer rates have already doubles in the last 50.  Three quarters of suicides are men.  Poor mental health leads to half a million men taking their own life every year.  Our fathers, partners, brothers and friends are facing this health crisis and it’s not being talked about.  We can’t afford to stay silent.

Connoisseur Media Long Island (CMLI)  and the “Movember Foundation” focus on three key areas; prostate cancer, testicular cancer and mental health/suicide prevention. CMLI is hosting a five week multimedia campaign to celebrate “Movember” – beginning October 24th and ending November 30th.  The program includes on-air profiles of iconic moustaches and the men who wore them, online contesting to guess the celebrity stash and in-field marketing with an oversized stash for fun and silly photos.  Morning show host, Mark Daniels is encouraging people to join the movement, grow hair and donate the funds you would have used for grooming to your favorite cancer charity!  Jim Condron, Sr. Vice President Connoisseur Media attended the luncheon.  Alica Marti, Marketing Director for Connoisseur Media Long Island, accepted the award for the station.

The Shark 94.3 (Connoisseur Media Long Island) – Clean Lake Ronkonkoma 

Morning show host, Brian Orlando (aka “Orlando”) is working with the Lake Ronkonkoma Improvement Group (LRIG) to clean up Lake Ronkonkoma.  The Lake has been neglected for over 30 years, including the roads and retaining walls around the Lake and it’s been used for public dumping.  Orlando got a call from a listener, who knew Brian was a Ronkonkoma guy and invited him to a meeting at the firehouse with the Lake Ronkonkoma Improvement Group to talk about an action plan on how to clean up the Lake.  Orlando took action immediately and has been able to work with the Lake Ronkonkoma Improvement Group to assemble a weekly group who go to the lake and get dirty while cleaning it up.  They have been picking up trash, moving busted pieces of retaining wall back to clear a path for joggers, removing dead and dying trees and they are going into the Lake to pull debris and garbage out of the water.  To ensure the project is on-going, Orlando and the LRIG created a weekly neighborhood watch to prevent future public dumping and destruction of this land and water.

Orlando’s involvement has turned the effort from talk to action because of his “let’s get it done” attitude.  Plus the exposure he gives it on-air has found new volunteers and resources to expand on what the group is doing.  Because of Orlando and his efforts with the LRIG, Suffolk County Executive, Steve Bellone, got involved to provide county aid and help navigate around challenging obstacles that have been preventing the project from happening.  His office has also helped advance timelines for things to happen sooner than later.    Brian Orlando from Connoisseur Media’s “The Shark 94.3” accepted the award for the station.

WJKY K98.3 and The Shark 94.3 – Giving Pets a Home – “K-9 Corner” and “Save a Pet” Programs 

WJKY 98.3 and 94.3 The Shark host weekly pet adoption features to find homes for dogs, cats, puppies and kittens.  K-98.3 works with both the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter and North Shore Animal League America by featuring pets available for adoption.  The pets are talked about on-air, posted online and shared on the station’s social channels.  The Town of Hempstead reports that they have successfully found homes for 100% of the pets they feature and NSALA have had an increase in adoptions because of their partnership.

The Shark 94.3 hosts a feature, twice per month (on average) with adoptable dogs and puppies in the studio.  Morning Show host, Orlando, talks about them on-air and posts them on The Shark’s Facebook page.  At times, he even does a Facebook live bit with the dogs and puppies.  The shelters he works with include: The Save-A-Pet Animal Shelter in Port Jefferson Station, The Little Shelter in Huntington, Last Hope Animal Shelter in Wantagh and North Shore Animal League America.  Alica Marti, Marketing Director, Connoisseur Media Long Island, accepted the award for the station.

Connoisseur Media Long Island – Emergency Preparedness with the United Way

Connoisseur Media Long Island (CMLI) has been called a community hero for using their air waves to keep people connected when they need it most.  That’s why they helped United Way of Long Island launch BeReadyLI.org.  The start of hurricane preparedness season, United Way of Long Island received a grant from PSEG Long Island to collaborate on a resource to help Long Islanders navigate through hurricane disasters and other weather events.  They created BeReadyLI.org.  The BeReadyLI initiative is a collaboration between PSEG Long Island, United Way of Long Island and 2-1-1 Long Island.  The initiative is designed to help Long Islanders be prepared before, during and after a disaster.  By following a few simple steps, you can help protect your entire family in the case of an emergency (weather related or otherwise).  Other partners include: The American Red Cross, Island Harvest and HWCLI (Health and Welfare Council of Long Island).  This website includes news and alerts, education and resources for before, during and after disaster strikes.  CMLI ran on-air time, blasted it out to their complete database (11% open rate to over 150,000 Long Islanders).  They continue to run time for them as the season demands.  Alica Marti, Marketing Director for Connoisseur Media Long Island, accepted the award for the station.

K 98.3, 103.1 Max FM, 94.3 The Shark and WHLI (Connoisseur Media Long Island) – Helping the Hungry with Pumpkin Park and the Helping Hands Foundation

Pumpkin Park and the Helping Hands Foundation – Long Island’s largest safe trick or treat – helps people who are hungry.  Helping Hands Foundation is the charitable arm of Long Island’s premiere amusement park, Adventureland.

This year, the stations hosted their annual safe trick or treat event called Pumpkin Park and asked guests to bring non-perishable food donations or monetary donations for the Town of Babylon Food Pantry in Amityville.  While the event is an attraction full of free candy and fun, Pumpkin Park is also a community initiative to help people in need.

In one day, and after seeing approximately 12,000 guests, The Helping Hands Foundation was able to assemble 100 baskets for Thanksgiving meals.  CMLI was with Adventureland on November 18th to deliver all the baskets to the pantry in Amityville.  Alica Marti, Marketing Director for Connoisseur Media Long Island, accepted the award for the station.

WVVH-TV – Clamshell Foundation’s Annual East Hampton Sandcastle Contest

This is WVVH-TV’s 20th year as their broadcast TV station, promoting and broadcasting coverage of the event.  One hundred percent of all money generated is donated to the people, programs and projects in the Town of East Hampton.  They are proud of their local focus to directly help the community.

Since the first Sand Castle Contest in 1992, funds have been raised to support the people, programs, and projects of the East End of Long Island.  In 1996, The Clamshell Foundation was formed as a 501c3 not-for-profit Corporation. They are all volunteers and grants are made locally to the people, programs and projects here on the East End.

Contributions to The Clamshell Foundation not only ensure that the SandCastle Contest will continue, but help support the station’s endeavors to foster and protect the very reason we live here.  Through the efforts of the annual East Hampton SandCastle contest they have been fortunate enough to support the following programs:

  • East Hampton High School Environmental Scholarships
  • Holiday Turkeys to Church Food Banks
  • The Odie Fund
  • The Olman Sanabria Humanitarian Award
  • Coast Guard Auxiliary Boating Safety Week
  • E. H. Trustees Shell fish Seeding Program
  • E. H. Trustees Puffer fish Grow out
  • The Dory Rescue Squad
  • Guild Hall Community Arts Program
  • Nature Conservancy Shellfish Seeding Program
  • Toys for Tots
  • T-Shirts to the Red Cross
  • Camp Good Grief – East End Hospice program
  • E. H. Town Trustees Rysum Fund
  • E. H. High School Science Class
  • East Hampton Historical Society
  • Springs Fire Dept. Holiday Meals for Seniors
  • Junior Lifeguard Program
  • Boys Scouts of America Troop 298

WVVH has taken on the support assistance for other worthy community based projects such as: The Olman Sanabria Humanitarian Award; College Scholarships and Church Food Banks.