Contact: Carrie Blewitt
Television Personality Ed McMahon Honored by the Horatio Alger Association
Association Awards Lifetime Member for Two Decades of Contributions
Washington, DC – (April 1, 2008) –The Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans announced today that it will honor television personality Ed McMahon with a special tribute and award for his outstanding service and dedication to the Association for more than 20 years. McMahon will be recognized during the 2008 Horatio Alger Awards ceremonies in Washington, DC, April 3-5, 2008.
"I am so proud to recognize the dedication, energy and talent that Ed has bestowed on the Association for two decades," said Chairman Dennis R. Washington. "His charm, wit and luminous spirit have shined upon the Horatio Alger awards ceremonies, not only as emcee and producer, but as a role model. He has provided a real star quality to our organization."
McMahon became a member of the Horatio Alger Association in 1984 and has served on the Board of Directors since 1996. He has also served as the event's executive producer since 2002. In 2003, McMahon received the Norman Vincent Peale Award, which honors exceptional Horatio Alger members for their ongoing involvement in Association activities, their humanitarian contributions to society, and their service as role models of courage, tenacity, and integrity in the face of great challenges.
McMahon's own Horatio Alger story is a significant one. In his youth, his family moved from town to town, and by the time he settled permanently with his grandparents in Lowell, Massachusetts, he had attended 15 different schools. He sold pots and pans door to door to make a living. He became entranced with radio, and by age 11 he was practicing his announcer techniques by reading Time magazine aloud into a flashlight. After working on the sound truck for a traveling carnival, he landed his first job at age 17, as a radio announcer with a local station.
McMahon defended our country in both World War II and the Korean War, in which he earned six air medals. His determination to have a career in communications earned him his degree at Catholic University. He soon became "Mr. Television" while he hosted, wrote and produced more than a dozen television shows. He went on to become the host of Who Do You Trust? starring Johnny Carson, and four years later hosted Carson's The Tonight Show, which lasted 30 years and 5,000 episodes. The show earned four Emmys.
About The Horatio Alger Association
Founded in 1947, the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans continues to fulfill its mission of honoring the achievements of outstanding individuals in our society who have succeeded in spite of adversity and of encouraging young people to pursue their dreams through higher education. The Horatio Alger Association offers scholarships through three annual programs: the National Scholarship Program, State Scholarship Programs for high school seniors and the Horatio Alger Military Veterans Scholarship Program for U.S. veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts. The Association now awards more than $12 million annually in college scholarships, totaling $52 million in recent years. For more information about the scholarships, please visit www.horatioalger.org.
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