CNN Press Releases 2009


MAY 4, 2009
CNN Signs Ford, McDonald's® and State Farm® to Sponsor Black in America 2

CNN's Signature Documentary Series to Return this July

CNN Ad Sales has signed returning sponsor McDonald's USA, and new sponsors Ford and State Farm, to Black in America 2, the second installment of the network's award-winning documentary series that examines the African-American experience.  The trio of advertising partners was announced today by Greg D'Alba, executive vice-president and chief operating officer of CNN Ad Sales and Marketing.

"CNN's brand of trusted journalism creates quality content that attracts diverse audiences," said D'Alba.  "Our advertising partners seek out our multi-platform programming like Black in America 2 because our unmatched content is so relevant and speaks to the engaged, emotionally-connected audiences they're trying to reach."
"Joining on as a sponsor of this program allows us to share the great news about Ford products via multiple media platforms and continue our long-standing commitment to the African American community," said Crystal Worthem, multicultural marketing manager, Ford Motor Company.

"This sponsorship of Black in America is a natural for McDonald's, where we're able to communicate our support of issues that are important to the African American community.  This is why we've been committed to this venture since the beginning," said Marty Gillis, the McDonald's Owner/Operator who leads McDonald's African American Marketing Committee.

"Exploring the experiences and innovation within the black community is a compelling story," said Pam El, Marketing Vice President for State Farm. "We are proud to help raise the public's awareness by sponsoring Black in America 2."

Ford, McDonald's, and State Farm will be featured as presenting sponsors of Black in America 2 with billboards surrounding all on-air features and documentary specials; Ford and State Farm will also sponsor's extensive online coverage.  Additionally, Ford will extend their partnership to Essence magazine for print and on-the-ground marketing efforts in association with this initiative.   McDonald's is a returning sponsor who is expanding their sponsorship package for 2009.

Reported by CNN anchor and special correspondent Soledad O'Brien, CNN's Black in America 2 will build upon its acclaimed 2008 initiative through branded Black in America reporting throughout the month of July, culminating in a two-night primetime documentary and a special co-produced with Essence magazine.  The series will focus on successful innovators who are working to make improvements within African American communities and around the country.  Black in America: Today's Pioneers debuts on Wednesday, July 22; Black in America: Tomorrow's Leaders will debut on Thursday, July 23.  The co-production with Essence magazine, featuring leaders and community organizers, CNN & Essence: Reclaiming the Dream, will be filmed in New Orleans at the Essence Music Festival in July and premiere on CNN on Saturday, August 1. Black in America 2 will also be reported with extensive online coverage including articles and commentary presenting community-related issues such as black leadership, the subprime mortgage crisis and strong black families. Interactive features from iReport submissions and interactive polls, to photo galleries and podcasts complete CNN and's 360-degree coverage of issues facing America's black communities.

In October, CNN will explore the experience of Latino Americans, focusing on cultural identity, language, education, and citizenship.  Latino in America, also reported by Soledad O'Brien, will take an intimate look at the diverse lives of America's largest minority with a two-night documentary event on-air and extensive supporting online features.

About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 205,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company's automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford's products, please visit

About McDonald's
McDonald's USA, LLC, is the leading foodservice provider in the United States serving a variety of wholesome foods made from quality ingredients to millions of customers every day. More than 80 percent of McDonald's 14,000 U.S. restaurants are independently owned and operated by local franchisees. For more information on McDonald's visit or log on at any of the 10,000 Wi-Fi enabled McDonald's U.S. restaurants.

About State Farm
State Farm insures more cars and homes than any other insurer in the U.S., is the leading insurer of watercraft and is also a leading insurer in Canada. State Farm's 17,700 agents and 68,600 employees serve, 81 million policies and accounts - more than 78.7 million auto, fire, life and health policies in the United States and Canada, and more than 1.9 million bank accounts. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 31 on the Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit® or in Canada®.

About CNN
CNN Worldwide, a division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner Company, is the most trusted source for news and information. Its reach extends to nine cable and satellite television networks; one private place-based network; two radio networks; wireless devices around the world; CNN Digital Network, the No. 1 network of news Web sites in the United States; CNN Newsource, the world's most extensively syndicated news service; and strategic international partnerships within both television and the digital media.