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COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD

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The Memphis Sound Companies continually strive to give back to our community, donating more than $100,000 in services ANNUALLY to charity events in and around Memphis, throughout the region, and nationally. In 2013 we produced and donated services to more than 100 charity fundraisers and events, including stages, sound, lights, power, talent, and ancillary services. In addition, we hire and train Military Veterans (Thank You for your service!) and the less-than-fortunate citizens in our community in order to help rehabilitate them and provide the skills and opportunities they might not have otherwise.

To that end, we established the MEMPHIS SOUND COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD for any of our Administration members, Staff, or Crew-members who give back. There are 3 Awards given, which include a trophy, certificates, and original artwork by children of many of the mid-South's most worthy causes. Each award also comes with a cash prize, ranging from $250 to $1000. One winner, and two others, are recognized by a vote of the management and staff.

For the 12th consecutive year, the MEMPHIS SOUND COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD goes to:

WOODY DEGAN

CONGRATULATIONS WOODY!


For nearly 20 years, Woody has worked tirelessly for local charities. In 2013 alone, he produced more than 100 non-profit events. These events run the gamut in size and structure, from small neighborhood inner city events to church programs, large multi-stage festivals, major concerts, and everything in between. His efforts assisted more than 30 local charities in raising more than $700,000 in 2013. St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital (5 events), Porter Leath Children's Center (3 events), Ronald McDonald House (3 events), Celebrate Children (2 events), the Memphis Literacy Foundation, the Heart Association, the Sickle Cell Foundation (2 events), the Autism Foundation, Face the Music, Juior League, The Memphis Redbirds (27 events), Relay for Life (3 all-night events), colleges and universities, local church events (27), the National Black Student Union (3 events), and many more.

In addition, Woody hires and trains his crew-members from two very distinct and different groups: U.S. Military Veterans and those who are economically impoverished and working toward rehabilitation. For his military staff, Woody provides additional income and a flexible schedule, which often allows them to make ends meet without distruption to their responsibilities. For his underpriveled/rehabilitating crew-members, Woody - on his own time and often at his own expense - provides the necessary instruction and training in order to provide them with a wide range of fundamental skills, including forklift/heavy equipment operation, stage and audio set-up/operation, warehousing, event planning, logistics, and power. He also assists many of these crew-members in obtaining proper identification, bank accounts, shelter, and the basic necessities of life. He says the leadership and example of his military members "makes for good influence" on those who are in the midst of putting their lives back together. He often drives 50 miles round trip in order to pick up and drop off his crews in order to make sure they are going where they are supposed to go. He encourages and assists those who need a rehab program to enlist, stay the course, and finish. After rehab, he makes them accountable to the other crew-members, which gives them a responsibility to someone other than thenselves, which he says is the "key to rehabilitation."

In 2013, Woody assisted 3 homeless crew-members in getting their identifications, financial accounts/debit cards, housing, computer skills, and getting them into - an finishing - rehab. For some of them, that means two or three attempts until they can successfully complete the program. Sometimes this means getting up in the middle of the night to retrieve someone out of a bad environment, take someone to the hospital, re-deliver someone to rehab, or posting bail, but Woody calls it all "part of giving back."

And finally, Woody also mentors aspiring young artists, engineers, and producers on the entertainment industry. He teaches University classes by Skype, and often makes his own classes in conjunction with local retailers in order to provide the next generation with the skills necessary to compete in the open market.

We at Memphis Sound are humbled and proud to have Woody on our team. We know he often foregoes financial or personal benefit to assist his crews. "If you don't do, you don't stay" is his constant message to his crews, but they all love him and respect him, often going the extra mile with that extra effort for us, too.

WOODY, ONCE AGAIN THE MANAGEMENT AND STAFF OF MEMPHIS SOUND ENTERTAINMENT ARE PROUD TO BESTOW OUR COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD ON YOU. THANK YOU FOR YOUR EFFORTS, YOUR CONCERN, & YOUR EXAMPLE.




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