THE WAIT IS OVER: ROBERT LINCE ELEMENTARY NAMED U.S. CELLULAR CALLING ALL COMMUNITIES $100,000 CHAMPION
Selah, Wash., February 16, 2010 – After enduring more than a month of suspense, the close-knit community of Selah, Wash., finally exhaled today. During a surprise school assembly, U.S. Cellular officials announced Robert Lince Elementary School as the fourth $100,000 champion in the company's Calling All Communities campaign.
"Oh my word! This is so awesome," said an ecstatic Robert Lince Principal Susan Petterson when notified of the school's victory only days ago. "We are a small community, so we just pulled together, worked hard and hoped it would pay off."
Posing as a guest speaker, Kim Sebastian, director of sales for U.S. Cellular in Washington, delivered the exciting news to a packed gymnasium of faculty, students, parents and community members. The announcement brought screams of excitement from the pre-kindergarten through fourth-grade students as 70 U.S. Cellular associates stormed in launching confetti while tossing T-shirts into the crowd.
"Not only is this a victory for Robert Lince Elementary School, it's a victory for Selah," Selah Mayor Bob Jones said. "This accomplishment proves that hard work can yield great rewards."
This is the second year that U.S. Cellular has awarded $1 million to 10 schools to spend however they choose. Voter participation more than tripled last year's campaign with 430,000 votes cast for 6,800-plus schools nationwide. Selah's community of just over 7,000 residents helped land Robert Lince in the winner's circle alongside nine other Calling All Communities 2010 champions.
"We are thrilled to have a winner in Washington for the first time since the inception of the program," Sebastian said. "The community support was unbelievable, and their campaign was so visible with flyers, billboards, events â€“ you name it."
Petterson said parents also played a critical role in the success of the campaign by organizing book giveaways, voter drives in malls and restaurants and posting flyers all over town. Perhaps the most creative tactic came from a local radio station whose catchy jingles about voting for Robert Lince Elementary School proved to be a big hit with listeners.
U.S. Cellular associates will make spontaneous visits to the six remaining schools throughout February. Three other schools in Tennessee, Illinois and Iowa were announced as $100,000 winners last week. To view winning school results, visit uscellular.com/callingallcommunities or U.S. Cellular's Facebook page.
About U.S. Cellular
The 9,000 associates of U.S. Cellular believe a wireless phone enhances people's lives and a wireless company should be in the business of bringing people together. U.S. Cellular has a wide range of monthly plans, including those with unlimited nationwide calling, unlimited free incoming calls and options to prepay. The company made the commitment to invest more than $5 million in teachers and schools during 2009 and 2010. Based in Chicago, U.S. Cellular is the nation's fifth-largest full-service wireless carrier, serving 6.2 million customers across the country. To learn more about the company visit one of its retail stores or uscellular.com.