“The first time I saw the video of the Georgia Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) boy and girl of the year, it put me to tears,” says Jim Franklyn, vice president of sales and marketing for Winder, Georgia-based Inkhead Promotional Products (UPIC: Inkhead). He’s referring to a video that was shown at last year’s gala event in Atlanta, Georgia. “When you saw how sick these children had been and how close they were to dying, then to see them come on stage and they are healthy and beaming with life, it really moved me.”
This race to find a cure for cancer is a personal mission for Franklyn. Between him and his wife, they have lost 12 family members to the disease. In 2010, Inkhead was a sponsor for the Gala Event for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and since then, Franklyn has led a personal mission to continue Inkhead’s support and to get other industry leaders involved in the cause.
“In 2011, I was one of six men nominated in Georgia based on my family history and standing in the business community for the LLS Man of the Year fundraising competition,” says Franklyn. He was nominated by the Georgia Leukemia & Lymphoma Society campaign manager, Tracy Manning.
During the month of April, Inkhead will be supporting Franklyn’s fundraising efforts by contributing up to five percent of every sale to the Georgia Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. “We also went to our supplier partners,” says Franklyn, “and many of them have agreed to donate a portion of sales, as well as monetary donations and items for a silent auction. Many thanks to Broder, Hit, Prime Line, Lanco, Hub Pen, Huffermen, Admints, SnugZ and Evans for donating part of their April sales to the cause and to SanMar for donating an Ogio golf bag and $50 gift certificate. Employees from Bag Makers and Aakron Rule also have made direct donations to the cause as well as InkHead employees.”
Franklyn’s goal is to help LLS in Georgia by raising $50,000 toward the association’s overall goal of $300,000during a 10-week period.
In 2009, the Georgia Leukemia & Lymphoma Society started the 10-week race for the cure where six men and six women are nominated for Man and Woman of the year, respectfully. Candidates are nominated based on their family history, standing in the business community and desire to help raise awareness and money for the deadly blood cancer diseases.
The fundraising competition runs until Saturday, June 4, with a gala celebration and silent auction at the luxurious Loews Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition to the support of InkHead and its key business partners and top suppliers, Frankyln’s family members across the country have also pledged their support and plan to hold fundraising events of their own.
You can learn more about Franklyn’s passion for this cause and his fundraising efforts during a special 15-minute local television segment on a show called Talk Of The Town, which airs this week at the following times EST: 7:15 pm; 11:15 pm and 7:15 am all week. Next week it will be on at 1:15 pm EST all week. Click here to for a live stream of this channel.
If you are interested in making a tax-deductible donation to Franklyn’s campaign, click here.