Brand expert, advertising guru, commentator and South African industry 'elder', Andy Rice has become 'patron of the ABF (Advertising Benevolent Fund)'. He is the first ever patron of the 43-year-old fund that is the vital support system behind the advertising, media and marketing industries.
"Andy has long been a loyal supporter of the ABF, both as an individual and in his professional circles," says Giles Shepherd, executive committee member and past president of the ABF. "He has a deep understanding of the organisation, its goals, as well as sympathy for the challenges it faces, especially in tough economic climates. As patron we can further rely on his insights and wise counsel."
The ABF has faced an extremely challenging few years, seeing income drop to record lows, whilst having to rescue a steadily increasing number of people in the industry that are in financial crisis - whether from retrenchment, accident, illness or a host of other causes. A re-think of the structure and strategy of the fund took place, and the intent of the new approach is to drive it back to its former glory.
"In its heyday of the 1980's and 1990's, the ABF was an imperative for every employee within the ad industry to be a member, attend all the events, and certainly for every agency to support the fund vigorously," says Andy.
Alexander Leibner, president of the ABF, says that having a personality as knowledgeable and high-profile as Rice as patron is an excellent step, in keeping with the new strategy. "A combination of energetic, talented and fresh young thinkers who are willing to give of their time and abilities to operate the fund, and seasoned 'elders' who are on hand to temper, advise and guide. And it's high time that the ABF got back to having some of those big names publicly supporting it!"
Andy Rice will be playing in the ABF Presidents Fourball this coming Thursday, 31 May 2012 for the ABF Presidents Cup Golf Day 2012, held at CCJ Woodmead.
About the ABF
Founded in 1969, the ABF is a non-profit vital support fund in aid of those in the South African advertising, marketing and media industry that have fallen on hard times.