NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Thursday is a big day for the News 8 family. June 17 is Founder’s Day for News 8’s parent company, Nexstar Media Group, founded 25-years-ago.
Every year, Nexstar celebrates its founding with “Founder’s Day of Caring,” giving back to the community by completing community service projects. Nexstar owns 199 TV stations around the country, and each one is helping out in its own way.
For Nexstar’s silver anniversary, News 8 will be working with the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven. Many of our News 8 anchors, reporters, and staff will be on-site to help out.
“I am just so thrilled and absolutely ecstatic about you all being here,” said Barbara Chesler, the interim Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of New Haven.
Check out the photo gallery below. See any familiar faces?
Nexstar Chairman and CEO Perry Sook said, “It’s very locally oriented where the stations decide what charities, communities or non-profits they want to support, form their own teams, and then go do their service work. So it’s a very bottom-up approach to say thank you to our local communities.”
Sook founded Nexstar on this day in 1996 with just one station in Pennsylvania. Now, Nexstar is the largest owner of TV stations in the nation.
“There’s so many things that we do throughout the year, but we just all agreed that the Boys and Girls Club of New Haven was something we could all get our arms around, so we’re happy to be here today,” said News8 General Manager Richard Graziano.
The News 8 crew is sprucing up the front garden, which doubles as day camp space during the summer months, adding a picnic table and raised flower beds. Inside, they are working on a new coat of paint where dozens of kids spent so much time during the pandemic when school was remote and parents had to work.
“Everybody’s been saying, ‘Can we brighten this place up?’” Chesler said. “So having you here and bringing us some nice, new, fresh paint will be fantastic.”
The New Haven club is celebrating 150 years – the most of any Boys and Girls Club. Meanwhile, Nexstar is celebrating 25 years since the founding, with a Day of Caring every year.
“It’s such an important day to give back, and it’s a simple way to make a really big difference,” said Connie Fitch, News 8’s Senior Marketing and Community Relations Manager.
The Day of Caring allows employees to take paid time off to do these good works. Around the country, some 4,000 employees are going to be taking part, helping out 260 different charities.
“Well, the Boys and Girls Club of New Haven offers a lot of great programs for the kids, and I just feel it’s a great way to give back,” said News 8 marketing consultant Aixa Ramos.