April 2, 2010
Contact: Josh Golin (617-896-9369; josh<at>commercialfreechildhood.org)
For Immediate Release
CCFC Honors Annie Leonard with Fred Rogers Integrity Award
BOSTON – April 2 - The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) is proud to announce that Annie Leonard – creator and host of the Internet film sensation The Story of Stuff – has been selected to receive the fourth Fred Rogers Integrity Award. The award, named in honor of the beloved host of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, is given by CCFC to the public figure whose efforts to protect children from harmful marketing best embody Fred Rogers’ long-standing commitment to nurturing the health and well-being of America’s children. The award will be presented to Leonard on Thursday, April Eighth at 7:30 PM at the Wheelock College’s Brookline Campus. The event is free and open to the public.
CCFC is honoring Leonard for encouraging millions of young people to explore the links between consumerism and environmental degradation and inspiring activism. The New York Times called The Story of Stuff "a sleeper hit in classrooms across the country.” Teachers all over the world are using the film to spark debate, encourage critical thinking, and spur students to consider their own consumer habits.
“With humor and charm, The Story of Stuff challenges the primary messages of marketing -- that the things we buy will make us happy, and that who we are is what we own,” said CCFC’s director Dr. Susan Linn. “By exploring the creation and disposal of consumer goods, Annie Leonard invites young people to examine and change their own relationship with what—and how much—they buy.”
Since the release of The Story of Stuff – which has been viewed more than 10 million times in more than 70 countries – Leonard has continued to expose the hidden environmental and social costs of our current systems of production and consumption. She recently released the film The Story of Bottled Water, and her just-published book The Story of Stuff: How Our Obsession with Stuff Is Trashing the Planet, Our Communities, and Our Health-and a Vision for Change (Free Press) is already garnering rave reviews.
“As a mother and activist, I am so very honored to receive the Fred Rogers Integrity Award from the Campaign for Commercial Free Childhood,” said Leonard. “Given the incredible legacy of Mister Rogers and the great work of CCFC, I could not be in better company in the work to create a healthy, safe, commercial-free future for all children.”
Fred Rogers once said, "We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility. It's easy to say ‘It's not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.’ Then there are those who see the need and respond. I consider those people my heroes.”
“We honor Annie Leonard for helping children understand that that it is their world, and for motivating them to take action to preserve it,” said Dr. Linn.
The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is a national coalition of health care professionals, educators, advocacy groups and concerned parents who counter the harmful effects of marketing to children through action, advocacy, education, research, and collaboration. CCFC is privileged to have permission from Joanne Rogers and Family Communications, Inc. to give the Fred Rogers Integrity Award. The award was given to Senator Tom Harkin in 2005; Raffi Cavoukian, the beloved children's troubadour, in 2006; and Morgan Spurlock, director and star of Super Size Me in 2008.