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AIDS Walk New York and Gay Men's Health Crisis Announce Record Corporate Sponsorship Levels


NEW YORK, March 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As news of the economic crisis persists, Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) and AIDS Walk New York (AWNY) proudly announced today outstanding results in corporate sponsorship for this year's AIDS Walk, the world's largest HIV/AIDS fundraising event benefiting GMHC and other HIV/AIDS organizations. "In spite of the recession, today's announcement demonstrates that the New York business community remains committed to helping those struggling with HIV/AIDS and preventing new infections here in the tri-state area," said Marjorie J. Hill, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of GMHC, the world's first AIDS organization. "It's wonderful to see public and private institutions demonstrate their leadership and compassion for those living with HIV/AIDS, especially in these tough economic times," added Hill.

"These businesses recognize both the social importance of contributing to the AIDS Walk as well as the positive effect that being a sponsor of this event brings to their businesses," said Craig R. Miller, Founder/Producer of AWNY and President of MZA Events. Corporate support for the event comes in the form of major sponsorship and employee team fundraising. This year, an estimated 45,000 will participate in the 24th annual 10-kilometer walkathon beginning and ending in Central Park on Sunday, May 17. More than half of the participants will walk with nearly 700 corporate teams. "Over the years, many companies have come to recognize that HIV/AIDS directly affects employees, customers, and stakeholders. Participating in the AIDS Walk is a way of acknowledging this reality while fortifying the bond with these groups -- many of whom bring their own individual passion and determination to fighting this battle every day," added Miller.

New York's CBS 2 will also be joining AWNY this year as the exclusive broadcast media television sponsor. "We look forward to doing everything we can to help raise the bar in terms of increasing the number of participants in this year's event and raising money to support HIV/AIDS programs in and around New York," said WCBS-TV President and General Manager, Peter Dunn. CBS 2 will be airing several daily celebrity-driven public service announcements focusing on the AIDS crisis in the tri-state area and encouraging viewers to register for the event.

Leading the corporate roster of returning Premier Sponsors are Bristol-Myers Squibb and Delta Airlines. As the only uniquely New York drug store chain, Duane Reade doubled its support from last year and newly joins the Premier Sponsor lineup. "As an iconic New York institution committed to improving the health and wellness of New Yorkers, Duane Reade is proud to be part of this year's AIDS Walk. Raising AIDS awareness enables us to give back to the community in a meaningful way that will improve the quality of life for our New York residents," said Jim Scarfone, Senior Vice President Human Resources & Administration for Duane Reade and a Trustee of the Duane Reade Charitable Foundation. Other notable increases in support this year come from Grand Sponsor Charles Cohen's Decoration & Design Building, Bloomberg, L.P., which doubled its contribution to become a Grand Sponsor; and Barclays Capital, which acquired former AIDS Walk sponsor Lehman Bros. last fall. Barclays enhanced its support by signing on as a Principal Sponsor, more than tripling the combined Barclays/Lehman support last year. "These leading businesses have made a loud and clear statement that efforts to overcome AIDS must continue, even in difficult times," said Miller. Other Grand Sponsors are WCBS-TV, Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Gap Inc. Principal Sponsors also include Fiona and Stanley Drunkenmiller, New York Daily News, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Zipcar. NYSE Euronext will host the AIDS Walk Closing Bell Ceremony on Thursday, May 7, 2009.

For more information about corporate sponsorship, please contact Brent Colby, MZA's sponsorship manager at (213) 201-9255.

About Gay Men's Health Crisis: Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) is a not-for-profit, volunteer-supported and community-based organization committed to national leadership in the fight against AIDS. We provide prevention and care services to more than 15,000 men, women and families that are living with, or affected by, HIV/AIDS in New York City, and advocate for scientific, evidence-based public health solutions for hundreds of thousands worldwide. Our Mission: GMHC fights to end the AIDS epidemic and uplift the lives of all affected. For more information, please visit

About AIDS Walk New York: Since 1996, AIDS Walk New York has raised more than $100 million for HIV programs and services in the tri-state area, and has grown into the largest AIDS fundraising event in the entire world. In 2008 alone, 45,000 participants, many of whom were members of 2,400 corporate and community teams, raised a record sum of more than $7.3 million for Gay Men's Health Crisis (GMHC) and 50 other tri-state area AIDS service organizations. For more information, please visit,

About MZA Events: AIDS Walk New York was founded in 1986 by Craig R. Miller and his organization of activists, MZA Events. Miller is the originator of the AIDS Walk fundraising model and has raised more than $350 million for leading AIDS charities nationwide. For more information, please visit

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