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The Real Man Behind the Success of the Ice Bucket Challenge

Who's responsible for the success of the Ice Bucket Challenge? My pick is Jerry Lewis. While others are responsible for the launch and promotion of this very successful fundraiser, Jerry Lewis put muscular dystrophy - of which ALS is one form - on the map.

Lewis' annual MDA Telethon raised BILLIONS over four decades. But, more importantly, Jerry's efforts elevated public awareness of an obscure and rare disease. The organizations that are benefiting from the Ice Bucket Challenge - like the ALS Association - wouldn't be in business if it wasn't for the groundwork Lewis laid.

In addition to putting muscular dystrophy in the public eye, Jerry and the Muscular Dystrophy Association were early practitioners of cause marketing.

This 2010 post from my blog highlights just how forward-thinking Lewis and MDA were. To date, the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised $22 million. Impressive, for sure. Jerry Lewis raised $2.5 billion for people with muscular dystrophy.

Jerry has a thing or two to teach you about fundraising!