Press Releases

7.06.06 Gov. Henry receives wildfire donation from country star Blake Shelton

(Oklahoma City) Country star and Warner Brothers recording artist Blake Shelton on Thursday presented Gov. Brad Henry, Insurance Commissioner Kim Holland and Project Rebuild with a $108,000 check for Oklahoma wildfire victims in a State Capitol ceremony Thursday.

Shelton recently hosted the charity concert Rain Dance in his hometown of Ada to raise money for Oklahomans who were displaced by the historic wildfire season. He is donating the proceeds to Project Rebuild, a public-private partnership of state officials, faith-based organizations and trade associations that is building new homes for a number of wildfire victims.

“I am very proud of my fellow Oklahomans who helped to make Rain Dance a success and raise needed funding and awareness for the victims of the wildfires,” said Shelton. “Without the help of the many volunteers in my hometown of Ada we couldn’t have accomplished all of this. I’m also grateful to all of my friends in the entertainment and sporting industries who volunteered their time. It gives me great pleasure to present this money to Project Rebuild.”

Gov. Henry and Commissioner Holland echoed Shelton’s comments.

“When it comes to helping the people who need it most, Oklahomans have the biggest hearts in the world. Oklahoma’s own Blake Shelton and the Project Rebuild volunteers are a perfect example of that spirit of giving,” said Gov. Henry.

“In Oklahoma, we believe in helping one another in our greatest time of need; and I am so pleased by the generosity of so many people and organizations partnering together to help some of our state's neediest families begin rebuilding not only their homes - but their lives," said Commissioner Holland.

Since November 1, wildfires have scorched more than 550,000 acres across the state, destroying more than 300 structures and leaving a number of families homeless.

Gov. Henry, Commissioner Holland and Shelton were joined at the check presentation by Sharilyn Young, executive vice-president of the Oklahoma Lumberman’s Association. Young and the OLA played a key role in organizing the Project Rebuild effort.

Launched in 1999 to help tornado victims, Project Rebuild is designed to assist those Oklahomans who either had no insurance or were underinsured and are having difficult replacing or finding a new home. Organizers want Project Rebuild to be a continuing effort that helps Oklahomans who are affected by future disasters.