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Successful fundraising depends upon the behind-the-scenes work of people we may never know about. One of these is Byron Glore, the executive producer of the Lou Rawls Parade of Stars Telethon for UNCF. While Melvin Shaw was the show’s creator, producer for UNCF, and the director of the associated fundraising campaigns, Byron was the show’s executive producer. Here’s their story and our tribute to Byron Glore.

Byron Glore and Mel Shaw worked together for years to bring the Lou Rawls Parade of Stars Telethon for UNCF to an international television audience. Mel had tested the concept in Texas, and UNCF had begun producing the show nationally, but – believe it or not – it was not initially produced by Black people and did not feature Black performers. In fact, most of the artists were white country and western stars. Both Byron and Mel knew this wasn’t right. It was Bryon who was able to bring about a change because of his deep commitment to Black people, relationships across corporate America, and his business and financial acumen.

Byron Glore

Here are Mel’s words, “Byron was the executive producer of the show – the man handling the money. I was the co-producer. We were partners and collaborators. With a project of that magnitude and the challenges involved, you need a person you can trust and respect for who they are and what they bring to the table.”

Byron was uniquely able to make the case for the telethon and UNCF to the corporate and business community. His sensitivity was born out of his experience as a Morehouse man, an outstanding athlete, a brilliant student, and as a corporate employee with access to some of the best business minds of his time. He was a super-marketeer and salesperson. A skilled collaborator and team builder, he was superbly talented at bringing together corporate representatives and UNCF team members. Byron was a man of vision, the ultimate achiever, who demanded high quality and the best from all he worked with. He knew how the corporate game was played and used that knowledge to the mutual benefit of UNCF and our corporate partners. He knew what each party needed and was shrewd enough to use that understanding to create a win for each party. He shunned the limelight and was a behind-the-scenes game-changer. He battled in the business sphere of his life and simultaneously demonstrated the deepest kindness and love for his daughter, Gabrielle Glore.

Click on the photo to download and view Byron’s video testimonial

Byron was a consistent champion of UNCF and the HBCUs that comprised its membership. Without Byron playing the role that he did we would not have enjoyed the success and longevity of the telethon. This is especially true of the relationship between Anheuser-Busch, the telethon’s lead corporate sponsor, and UNCF. Today, when we talk with nonprofits about engaging a corporate partner and creating win-win scenarios we are sharing what we learned from Byron. Rest in peace.

Full obituary available at  Click here for a video tribute by Gabrielle Glore.

Here are a few more stories about the people behind Lou Rawls Parade of Stars Telethon for UNCF:
  1. Making the needle move: the birth of the UNCF telethon
  2. Ed McMahon and Black History
  3. National Fundraising — The Power and Impact of Local Volunteers

Copyright 2024 – Mel and Pearl Shaw of Saad&Shaw – Comprehensive Fund Development Services. Let us help you plan for 2024! Video and phone conferencing services are always available. Call us at (901) 522-8727.

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