HOUSTON --- CITGO Petroleum Corporation and its Venezuelan parent company, Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., celebrate 20 years of participation in the annual Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon this weekend by presenting checks totaling $8 million to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). The funds will be used in the continuing quest for a cure for neuromuscular diseases.
This year’s Telethon will include appeals for relief to help the victims of hurricane Katrina. CITGO earlier this week pledged one million dollars to assist with relief efforts, and its parent company has offered further assistance in the form of fuel supplies, if required.
CITGO’s employees, marketers and business associates conduct and participate in scores of fundraising events throughout the year in an effort to contribute to the fight against neuromuscular disease.
“Over the past 20 years, the efforts of our employees, marketers and business associates have raised more than $70 million for the fight against these diseases. The presentation of these checks is the culmination of this year’s efforts,” said CITGO Petroleum Corporation President and CEO Félix Rodríguez.
Recently, the paint scheme on the CITGO Pontiac Crawford Daytona Prototype race car was changed to salute MDA and the 20th anniversary of CITGO’s fundraising efforts on behalf of the charity. The special red, white and blue paint scheme features 2005 MDA National Goodwill Ambassador Morgan Fritz of St. Peters, Mo., along with CITGO’s “Energy to Care” slogan.
Additionally, at the last three Rolex Grand Am races, the CITGO Racing Team and Howard-Boss Motorsports hosted children diagnosed with neuromuscular disease and their families. Katherine Shelton, Nicholas Patte and Bailey Dull were able to attend the races in Birmingham, Ala., Watkins Glen. N.Y. and Lexington, Ohio. These special guests spent time with drivers Milka Duno, Jan Lammers, Tony Stewart and Andy Wallace, along with members of the race team.
“If we can do something for kids like this, it’s great,” said Duno. “Everyone should make a contribution to something like MDA. They need us.”
“What we are doing is just a sport and the situation with MDA puts things in perspective,” added Wallace. “No matter what sort of bad day you might be having in racing or in your private lives, there are people who have struggled and survived through some pretty horrific things. It has been wonderful to meet these people.”
Rodríguez, along with CITGO employees and business partner representatives, will join Jerry Lewis in Los Angeles this weekend for the 20th annual MDA Labor Day Telethon, beginning Sept. 4.
CITGO, based in Houston, is a refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals, refined waxes, asphalt and other industrial products. The company is owned by PDV America, Inc., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.