Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

Feeding America’s six degrees of separation

March 17, 2009

While the six degrees game is tied to Kevin Bacon, connections to other celebrities are helping a major charity.

Feeding America, formerly known as America’s Second Harvest, has several celebrities on its entertainment council, including chairman David Arquette.

The actor, who volunteers at a Venice, California, food pantry twice a week, and wife Courteney Cox Arquette introduced Feeding America to Ben Silverman, the co-chairman of NBC Entertainment and NBC Universal Television Studio, President and CEO Vicki Escarra said at the Reuters Food and Agriculture Summit.
 
One large way Feeding America has gotten its name out over the past few months is through its mentions on NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” weight loss television show.
    
Escarra said Feeding America met last week with Silverman “to see if there’s a way that Feeding America can really be more involved in the properties of NBC.”
 
She said Silverman is now considering the idea.

Among many campaigns from corporations that highlight Feeding America is one that caught even Escarra by surprise. 
 
“We now have a really nice piece that I didn’t even know we had. I was watching TV Sunday night and I saw this really beautiful Visa commercial,” she said.
 
Escarra also spoke about some upcoming campaigns.  The Arquettes will appear in 40 magazines and on signs in U.S. post offices in April and May promoting the Letter Carriers’ food drive. Last year, the drive collected 73 million pounds of food, according to Feeding America.
 
And for Easter, along with the egg producers, Feeding America is doing an event in Hollywood. For every egg decorated by celebrities and their children, a tractor trailer full of eggs will go to a food bank. 

(Reuters photo)

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