Comcast NBCUniversal and City Year to be Honored at 36th Annual Walter Kaitz Foundation Fundraising Dinner

Annual event raises funds to support media and entertainment diversity groups

WASHINGTON, DC – Comcast NBCUniversal, the global media and technology company whose primary businesses include Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal, and Sky, will be honored as the 2019 Diversity Champion at the 36th Annual Walter Kaitz Foundation (WKF) Fundraising Dinner this September. City Year will be presented with the Diversity Advocate award. In 350 schools across the country, diverse teams of City Year AmeriCorps members provide support to students, classrooms and the whole school, helping ensure students in systemically under-resourced schools receive a high-quality education that prepares them with the skills and mindsets to thrive and contribute in their communities.

The 36th Annual Walter Kaitz Foundation Fundraising Dinner takes place on Wednesday, September 18, 2019, at the New York Marriott Marquis under the theme “We Are All IN.” This annual event focused on diversity, equity and inclusion is the highlight of Diversity Week activities in the internet and television industry.

Proceeds from the event support the four key industry organizations funded by WKF and include the Emma L. Bowen Foundation, the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), the T. Howard Foundation, and Women in Cable Telecommunications (WICT). Each year, the event brings together media and entertainment leaders committed to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion across the industry and raises nearly $2 million in support of the programs and initiatives of these key organizations.

2019 Diversity Champion – Comcast NBCUniversal
The Diversity Champion award is given annually to organizations that act as catalysts for diversity throughout the media and entertainment industries. Diversity Champions motivate the industry to embrace and value inclusion by serving as role models, inspiring and encouraging excellence, removing barriers that hinder progress, and empowering others with opportunities. The Diversity Champion’s advocacy for diversity, equity, and inclusion extends to its supplier diversity programs, corporate philanthropy, recruitment and retention, and programming content.

Founded more than 55 years ago, Comcast has remained true to one of its core values of creating a diverse and inclusive company where its employees and partners are valued for their unique contributions and differences that create a more innovative and successful company. Comcast NBCUniversal’s approach to diversity and inclusion is centered on five key focus areas: governance, workforce, supplier diversity, programming, and community impact. At the end of 2018, 62 percent of Comcast NBCUniversal’s employees were women or people of color, it spent over $18 billion with diverse Tier I Suppliers since 2010, and it carried more than 100 diverse networks on its Xfinity platform.

2019 Diversity Advocate – City Year
The Diversity Advocate Award is presented annually to an organization or individual outside of the cable industry who has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Through visionary leadership, awardees directly or indirectly foster a more embracing and inclusive environment where diversity and equity thrive.

Founded in 1988, City Year is an educational nonprofit that partners with schools in communities challenged by persistent inequity within the education system to create learning environments where all students can build on their strengths and fully engage in their learning. City Year AmeriCorps members serve in schools full time and focus on reducing “early warning indicators” that place students at increased risk for dropping out of school including low attendance, poor behavior and/or course failure in English and math. Through their work in schools and communities, City Year AmeriCorps members not only make a difference in the lives of students they serve but also acquire valuable skills that prepare them to become the next generation of civically engaged leaders.

“The Walter Kaitz Foundation is excited to honor both Comcast NBCUniversal and City Year at our 36th Annual Fundraising Dinner. The two organizations have been supporting diversity and inclusion initiatives for decades and it is fitting that they are being recognized together,” said Michelle Ray, Executive Director of the Walter Kaitz Foundation. “Both organizations share a belief in, and demonstrate a commitment to enhancing diversity, equity and inclusion in their respective realm and we are proud to recognize their groundbreaking achievements.”

36th Annual Walter Kaitz Foundation Fundraising Dinner
This year’s Annual Fundraising Dinner is being spearheaded by a distinguished committee of industry leaders co-chaired by Alfred Liggins, III, CEO, Urban One and John Pascarelli, Executive Vice President, Operations, Mediacom Communications Corporation. “The Dinner Committee is what makes the Kaitz Dinner such an exceptional event and experience. These leaders not only support our efforts around diversity, equity and inclusion throughout the year, but help to further the Foundation’s cause through their advocacy and financial commitment,” added Michelle Ray. Rounding out this year’s committee are Robert Bakish, President & CEO, Viacom, Inc., Paul Buccieri, President, A+E Networks Group, Jeffrey S. DeMond, President & CEO, Vyve Broadband, John D. Evans, Chairman & CEO, Evans Telecommunications Company.

Tables and tickets for the dinner are still available for purchase. For information on sponsorship opportunities or for questions about the dinner, contact the Walter Kaitz Foundation at (202) 222-2490 or email Additional information about the dinner can also be found at

About the Walter Kaitz Foundation
The Walter Kaitz Foundation advances diversity, equity, and inclusion in the media and entertainment industries. The Foundation provides targeted grants to organizations, supports vital industry research that promote diversity and inclusion in the workforce and collaborates with key stakeholders on the curation and presentation of diverse content. The Foundation also develops unique programs and initiatives designed to educate and facilitate collaboration between partners and benefactors that align with our mission. Over the past 15 years, WKF has distributed over $19.5 M in grants in support of diverse programs and initiatives.

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