Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today declared March 2003 American Red Cross Month in Michigan. Granholm presented John Cauley, Executive Director of the American Red Cross Mid-Michigan Chapter, with an official signed proclamation recognizing the valiant efforts of the American Red Cross. To launch Red Cross Month, Granholm was joined by members of the Michigan Legislature to give blood at a day-long "Give Life Capitol Kick-Off" blood drive.
"Giving blood is among the easiest ways to give back to your community," said Granholm. "It's literally a way to give a little bit of yourself to help another. In these uncertain times, it is imperative that we continue to support the Red Cross' efforts to protect and save the lives of our friends and families."
The "Give Life Capitol Kick-Off" blood drive was sponsored by Governor Granholm, First Man Daniel G. Mulhern, Lt. Governor John Cherry Jr., Attorney General Mike Cox, Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema, Senate Minority Leader Bob Emerson, Speaker of the House Rick Johnson, and House Democratic Leader Dianne Byrum.
More than 100 employees from the sponsors' offices were expected to donate blood during the six-hour drive. Numerous Republican and Democratic state lawmakers were on hand to support the proclamation. House Democratic Leader Dianne Byrum (D-Onondaga), State Representative Scott Hummel (R-DeWitt), Speaker Pro Tempore Larry Julian (R-Lennon), Joe Hune (R-Fowlerville), Kathleen Law (D-Gibraltar), Aldo Vagnozzi (D-Farmington Hills), and Daniel Paletko (D-Dearborn Heights) joined the Governor to encourage Michigan citizens to give blood.
"This year, we wanted to come together not as individual parties, but as one united group that understands the necessity and importance of supporting the Red Cross," said Granholm.
The Capitol blood drive was previously known as the Legislative Blood Challenge, a competitive blood drive between Republicans and Democrats.