24 April 2008
Alabama Lead Singer & JSU Trustee Randy Owen
to Receive Prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor
in NYC Ceremony
Nashville, Tennessee...A Wonderful Honor for Randy - April 21, 2008 - Randy Owen, lead singer of the legendary group Alabama has
been chosen to receive the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor in a ceremony
to be held in New York City on Saturday, May 10, 2008.
The Ellis Island Medal of Honor was established in 1986 to pay tribute to the immigrant
experience and individual achievement. Each year since 1986, NECO has sponsored the Ellis Island Medals of
Honor. The Medals are presented on Ellis Island, in a dramatic ceremony, to
American citizens of diverse origins for their outstanding contributions to
their communities, their nation and the world. (See video: www.neco.org/video.htm.
The Honor is recognized by the United States House of Representatives
and the Senate, and as such the names of all winners are listed in the
Membership in the Society is reserved exclusively for
Ellis Island Medal of Honor recipients. This elite group is an American "Who's Who" of politics,
industry, finance, sports, technology, education, entertainment and the
arts. Past Ellis Island Medal of Honor recipients include
six Presidents of the United States, Nobel Prize winners, athletes, leaders
of industry, artists and others whose work has made a lasting impact on
"This is one of the most memorable things to happen to
my family and me," said Randy. "I am so proud to be able to represent a whole
lot of my family. This just shows you as a kid growing up in poverty, with a lot
of love and determination, you can do a lot in this great country."
lead singer and principal songwriter of Alabama, Randy Owen received over 150
industry awards including eight Country Music Association honors for
"Entertainer of the Year," two Grammys, two People's Choice Awards and their
very own star on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame." They were named the "Artist of
the Decade" by the Academy of Country Music and "Country Group of the Century"
by the Recording Industry Association of America. In November 2005 Randy and his
Alabama band mates received Country Music's highest honor, being inducted into
The Country Music Hall of Fame. Alabama is one of the 20 best-selling acts of
all time racking up 21 gold, platinum and multi-platinum albums, 42 number one
singles and more than 73 million records sold.
Randy Owen has played a part
in many different causes and charitable events throughout the years. His passion
for helping others is evident through the types of causes he chooses to support.
He has played an integral role in raising millions of dollars for schools,
public service organizations, hospitals, youth ranches and scholarships through
a myriad of events. But perhaps nothing touches his heart quite like his 19-year
commitment to the kids of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
In 1989 Randy
was asked to address the Country Radio Seminar in Nashville following the death
of Danny Thomas who was to be the seminar's keynote speaker. Inspired by the
dreams and determination Thomas, who founded St. Jude Children's Research
Hospital, Randy offered a challenge to those in attendance to accept Danny's
dream of eradicating childhood cancers and other catastrophic diseases. Randy
delivered the message well. Country radio accepted the challenge, and "Country
Cares for St. Jude Kids" was born. The national radiothon program is embraced by
hundreds of radio stations all over America, having raised over $315 million to
Last summer, Tony Thomas, son of Danny, presented Randy with the
Founder's Award - an honor that Danny only bestowed on very special occasions.
In June, Randy will be on hand to accept an award at the 10th annual NAB
Education Foundation's Celebration of Service to America Awards on behalf of
Country Cares for St. Jude Kids. In addition, The Friends of the National
Library of Medicine organization have chosen him to receive the Paul G. Rogers
Public Service Award for his many years of work with St. Jude at a ceremony in
Washington, DC on May 13, 2008.
Randy recently recorded his debut solo
project, One On One, which will hit stores later this year. He performs
regularly with his new band and will hit the road on a nationwide tour beginning
About NECO: NECO was created in 1984 on the conviction of its
founder, William Denis Fugazy, that the diversity of the American people is what
makes this nation great. NECO's mission is simple-to honor our diverse Past, to
advocate for positive change in the Present, and to build strong leaders for the
Future. We do this with one goal in mind. To help create the world of the future
today. NECO is a non profit 501(C) (3) organization with strategic alliances
that allow us to support a range of diverse programs and insure that every
dollar we spend goes to creating a better world in the future for us all.
NECO builds strong leaders for the future. NECO provides significant resources to programs and organizations
that have proven their effectiveness in developing today's young people into
tomorrow's leaders. NECO's work today
helps ensure that the world of tomorrow will be a world without
Visit Randy Owen's Website at www.randyowen.com.
Source: NECO/Randy Owen
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