How LOUD #SecurityServes Communities By Putting the “Fun” in Fundraising
As the winter holidays draw close, we have so much to be thankful for, including the many ways our members are contributing to their communities. We want to take a moment to show how ESA Member, LOUD Security Systems Inc. and its president, John Loud made a difference in difficult times.
If there’s one thing the folks at LOUD Security know, it is how to GET LOUD and give big. In one encounter with President John Loud, and you’ll find a man whose heart for serving others is just as big as his fun-loving and off-the-wall personality.
So, when the company gets an opportunity to give back to the community, they know there’s no better man to lead the charge than John himself. John Bennett, LOUD’s Director of Marketing says:
We found that when you give John the freedom to act as zany as he wants and hand him a microphone, he’ll definitely GET LOUD and make a lot of folks smile.
Or as John Loud says, “Massive laughs lead to massive fundraising.”
Among the many opportunities LOUD has for raising funds and awareness, the ones that take precedence are certainly those that touch the lives of children and the less fortunate.
One example is the Strand Theater’s annual Adult Spelling Bee
This event is a humorous twist on the traditional spelling bee, and proceeds go to “Communities in Schools,” an organization that helps at-risk children stay in school and achieve in life. The “Bee” is a night of laughs and some on-stage antics, as costumed teams offer funny attempts at spelling difficult words.
LOUD supports the event through sponsorship, while John Loud emcees, dressed in quirky outfits. One such outfit was Waldo from the popular children’s book, “Where’s Waldo.”
John does his best to make the events memorable, often recruiting well-known friends like former Atlanta Braves players Brian Jordan, Otis Nixon, and John Rocker to join in the fun.
“Having John support the ‘Communities in Schools’ of Georgia in Marietta/Cobb’s Annual Adult Spelling Bee has transformed our event.” says Natalie Rutledge, the charity’s Executive Director. “He attended the second year and immediately afterwards committed to helping the next year, and that was four years ago.”
Since then, he has emceed twice, and served as Honorary Chair. During our “gap year” because of COVID restrictions, he volunteered to be one of our Jail & Bail designees and helped raise almost $20,000. “We appreciate John’s friendship, support, and investment of time, talent, and resources to help kids,” added Rutledge.
As much as John loves to make people laugh, he never forgets the reason behind it all. “The struggles that many in our community are facing are more apparent now than ever.” Loud said.
We can’t fix them all. But we can do our part to shine the light on them and give others the opportunity to make a difference.
With that in mind, in 2020, John assumed the voluntary role of Chairman of the Board for the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce, and stayed for an unprecedented two years to help the Chamber’s many businesses navigate through some of the most difficult times of economic uncertainty. “This is what the chamber is for. Businesses helping businesses.”
LOUD Security sponsored chamber events, and John himself went right to work, recruiting VIPs for the chamber’s monthly breakfasts, and overseeing a record-breaking $1 million year for the membership campaign, while personally raising over $200,000 for the organization’s top fundraiser during his term. Sharon Mason praises John Loud’s efforts:
John has been the top producer of the Membership Campaign for years, taking it to record heights and helping more companies take advantage of the many resources and member benefits of the Cobb Chamber.
Another event led by LOUD’s fun loving leader was Red, White, and YOU, a nonprofit fundraiser designed to raise money for the Georgia National Guard Family Support Foundation, an organization that supports the families of Georgia’s Airmen and Guardsmen.
LOUD Security gave generously, both in sponsoring the event and volunteering. And once again, John Loud emceed the auction, dressed hilariously, this time as Buddy the Elf.
“John has set a tremendous example. Not only through fundraising but also by rallying support in crisis at the beginning of the pandemic,” noted Adjutant Major General Tom Cardon, responsible for Georgia’s Army and Air National Guards.
Loud and others were able to secure many unique experiences to be auctioned, including special donations from area celebrities. The event proved to be a huge success, with numerous generals and area city mayors present while raising over $113,000 in donations.
One more giving opportunity located close to the LOUD offices and even closer to John’s heart is MUST Ministries, a multifaceted nonprofit organization that serves homeless and low-income individuals and families by providing food, clothing, housing, job placement, and other services.
LOUD Security not only provides top notch security for MUST’s facilities but lends a hand in raising much-needed funds.
Recently, the organization was preparing to present its annual GALA and auction, and needed a host. Once again, the choice was obvious. “John Loud and his support for others in the Cobb Community is legendary…as a matter of fact, there is no one else quite like him!” remarks Ike Reighard, MUST President and CEO. “John can MC an event like a true professional and raise money for charitable causes in way that energizes a crowd instantaneously!”
True to his LOUD nature, John led the festivities and auctioned off an array of donated prizes, all while dressed in full costume as characters such as Billy Mays, the eccentric late-night TV salesperson, or as Harry Carey, the booming and endearing voice of the Chicago Cubs.
Psychology tells us that people are more likely to offer help to those they can relate to. The popular comedian and pianist Victor Borge once quipped that “Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.”
No one knows this better than John Loud. For John and LOUD Security, fundraising always begins with fun. It’s hard to deny that when you GET LOUD for a great cause, great things can happen.
A huge thank you to LOUD Security Inc. for joining ESA’s #SecurityServes campaign and for giving back to the community in so many ways.