Thursday, November 19, 2009

Tina Fey, Muhtar Kent Celebrate Public Service at Ad Council Dinner

On Wednesday night, thousands of people gathered at New York's Waldorf Astoria to celebrate the achievements of the Ad Council, the leading organization of public service announcements for over 60 years. Ad Council aired PSAs by organizations ranging from Autism Speaks to Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America to That's Not Cool, a foundation that helps teens recognize relationship abuse via text message.

The evening raised a staggering $2.5 million.

"Now is the time to shed what is wasteful, what is unproductive, and continue communicating with your consumers and investing in your brands," said Coca-Cola Company Chairman & CEO Muhtar Kent.

Kent was presented with the 56th Annual Public Service Award Wednesday night, and used his acceptance speech to address the many challenges the advertising world is facing.

"Keep the faith," he told the audience, which included executives from sponsors Time Warner and Yahoo. "These tough days are going to pass."

Seven-time Emmy Award winner and Saturday Night Live veteran Tina Fey served as Master of Ceremonies, echoing Kent's sentiments on the importance of PSAs.

"Nancy Reagan said don't do drugs," she recalled, from her childhood. "So I didn't."

"By show of hands, how many people in the room can say that?" she asked, drawing a laugh.

Fey peppered the evening with hilarious monologues - including everything from a Sarah Palin impression ("I'm gonna be doing that til I'm dead," she noted) to a confession about her NBC show 30 Rock: " I work on a show that you may have heard of called 30 Rock," she told the audience. "I say you may have heard of it because I know from the ratings that you have not seen it."

Be sure to visit the Ad Council website to learn more about their contributions.

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