Without a formal announcement, company joins other networks in making major donations
CBS is making a $1 million dollar donation to Hurricane Sandy recovery as part of a wider effort that includes PSAs and matching employee contributions through the end of the year, TheWrap has learned.
CEO Les Moonves announced the company's Red Cross donation in a letter to employees obtained by TheWrap, in which he thanks CBS staff working in hurricane-stricken parts of the Northeast and details its charitable plans.
Other networks are pitching in as well: ABC is devoting its programming day Monday to fundraising, and its corporate parent, Disney, has donated $2 million. Fox's parent, News Corp., has donated $1 million. And NBC is holding a telethon tonight. All of the networks are also making viewers aware of the recovery efforts through means ranging from crawls to PSAs.
Moonves singled out employees from all corners of the company who worked through tough conditions to keep its television and radio stations going.
"I am announcing today that November, the month of Thanksgiving, will be dedicated at all our operations to supporting the Hurricane Sandy relief efforts of the American Red Cross, with whom CBS has a long partnership in times of crisis," he wrote. "Our local TV and radio stations, and their online counterparts, will work both individually and together… to employ our unique resources to lend additional support to those relief efforts through telethons, phone banks and comprehensive PSA campaigns. Those efforts have already begun, and are expanding as you read this."
CBS, he noted, is producing special PSAs featuring its stars. The first, with Gary Sinise, aired during "The Big Bang Theory" on Thursday. More will air during football over the weekend.
Additionally, "Entertainment Tonight" is enlisting stars to appear in PSAs that will run in syndication on affiliates of all networks airing the show. CBS will also dedicate billboards to the relief effort.
"There will not be one division of our company that does not contribute to this effort, each in its own way, and in ways to be determined by each," Moonves wrote.
"As a cornerstone of this month-long drive, CBS Corporation will make a $1 million contribution to the American Red Cross," he added. "In addition, we are also making a commitment to match your individual contributions to any Sandy-related relief efforts by making corresponding additional gifts to the American Red Cross. The match will apply to contributions that may have already been made as well as to new donations through the end of the year."