Medical advertising shops raise $100K for Haiti relief

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The compassion and goodwill of the medical advertising agency community has turned what started as a single donation to the Haitian earthquake relief effort into a collaborative, non-partisan effort spanning numerous organizations, and raising more than $100,000 to date for the beleaguered Caribbean republic.

It started when Louisa Holland, co-CEO, The Americas, Sudler & Hennessey, made a donation to the not-for-profit Doctors Without Borders (DWB). “When disaster struck in Haiti, it took only moments to realize that this was a time to act fast, so S&H cut a check within days.”

“But the size of the disaster was so big, and the needs so great,” she said, “that I felt there must be a way to do more. I wondered if colleagues from the healthcare communications industry—S&H's competitors, in effect—might rise to a ‘challenge' from Sudler & Hennessey, to match our donation and collectively show the support of our industry.”

Initially, she approached the Medical Advertising Hall of Fame (MAHF) to support an organized effort among further agencies. But because the MAHF's mission does not extend to facilitating such programs, Scott Cotherman, CEO of Corbett Accel Healthcare Group—and chairman of the MAHF—took it upon himself to carry the mantle and challenge other agency leaders within the Omnicom organization to match Holland's donation. (Cotherman had already made a donation on behalf of Corbett.) Holland agreed to do the same within WPP. And if they were successful, they agreed they would take it further afield.The response was immediate and overwhelmingly positive. “Clearly this tragedy has opened a lot of hearts,” said Holland, “and I believe the donations have underscored some of the core values of our industry.”

To date the following agencies and networks have, collectively, donated more than $100,000: AbelsonTaylor, Adelphi, The CementWorks, CommonHealth, Corbett Accel Healthcare Group, DDB Health, Euro RSCG Life, Flashpoint Medica, Goble & Associates, Harrison & Star, InVentiv, Ogilvy Healthworld, Sudler & Hennessey and Topin & Associates.
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