Introducing the Donald E. Wildmon American Family Endowment
March 2008 – For thirty years, Donald E. Wildmon has carried the mantle as one of America’s original, and most formidable, culture warriors. He surfaced on the cultural landscape in 1977 when, as a United Methodist minister who had seen enough sex, violence and profanity portrayed on network television, he called on members of his small congregation to simply register their protest by turning off their televisions for a week. Little did Don know that his small attempt to do what he could for the families in his congregation would gain national media attention and catapult him into the public spotlight.
Today, after almost countless appearances on shows like Meet the Press, McNeil-Lehrer Report, Good Morning America, The Tomorrow Show, The Today Show, Nightline, The 700 Club, and features in scores of publications like Time, Newsweek, People, TV Guide, Christianity Today, USA Today, and The Wall Street Journal, Don Wildmon is still doing what he can for families all over America.
From that unassuming beginning, Don has tirelessly built one of the most effective grassroots pro-family organizations in America, challenging giant corporate sponsors like 7-Eleven, K-mart, Disney, Ford and many others to be more family-friendly. Ron Alridge, a television columnist for the Chicago Tribune wrote, “What Wildmon’s opponents fail to grasp is that he is surviving, thriving and gaining influence because he is (a) sincere, (b) smart, (c) more than a little bit right!”
Although perhaps an unlikely culture warrior of national reputation, it is hard to overlook the providential success of this unassuming man. Steve Beard of Good News Magazine sums him up well in these lines: “In some ways, Don Wildmon is an unlikely national celebrity. He is not a charismatic leader, per se. He does not turn heads when you walk with him into a restaurant. He does not wear Armani suits, and his shirts do not have stitched monograms, let alone cuff links. He does not turn up the charm when he talks to the press. Wildmon is thoroughly unpretentious. He would much rather be making life miserable for some television executive (or Michael Eisner, the ACLU or People for the American Way) than singing his own praises. He is too busy to toot his own horn. Besides, there is a culture war going on. He seems to be saying, ‘Don’t you see it? Can you hear it?’”
It is the singleness of purpose and unwavering commitment of this good man to the American family that motivated the AFA Foundation to propose and establish the Donald E. Wildmon American Family Endowment to celebrate thirty years of tireless service on behalf of families all over the nation.
An endowment is a fund that is made up of gifts and bequests that are subject to a requirement that the principal be maintained intact and invested to create a source of income to AFA for many years to come. It is a way for friends and supporters of AFA to assure that AFA continues to battle for the American family long after Don Wildmon has gone to his reward.
Revenue from the endowment fund can eventually be invested in the many ministries of AFA and used to establish new family-friendly efforts. Such endowments are the way left-leaning organizations have been funded for years.
The AFA Foundation is the organization that communicates with AFA friends and supporters and raises funds for the sole purpose of funding the group’s mission and ministry.
The Foundation has established the Donald E. Wildmon American Family Endowment as a fitting tribute and 30-year celebration gift to Don and his wife, Lynda, for their devotion and service to AFA and its mission. The Wildmons seek no personal gifts or fame. The greatest gift that can be given them is the continuation of AFA’s defense of the family well into the future. The endowment is a means to that end.
If you would like to contribute gifts and/or bequests of any kind and amount to the endowment fund, you may do so by sending your gift to AFA and designating it for the Wildmon Endowment Fund. If you would like to speak with someone about how you might make a gift or bequest, you may contact Diane O’Neal, director of donor relations at the AFA Foundation, directly by calling 662-680-3886 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
In the words of Don Wildmon, “I’m not profound; I’m a fighter.” Please consider how you might join friends and supporters this year in showing your deep appreciation for his fight on behalf of the American family, and in the process, assure that the fight will continue for generations to come.
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