NASHVILLE, Tenn. (April 7, 2000)—Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. has gone to cyberspace to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Firestone brand and the legacy of its founder, Harvey S. Firestone.
The Web site (www.firestone100.com) takes a look at the history of the Akron-based Firestone Tire & Rubber Co., which Bridgestone Corp. purchased in 1988.
It also takes a look forward, according to BFS, with a project called "100 Who Serve"—a national contest to identify 100 people who have served others in their communities.
"The concept of launching a centennial Web site was to educate the world on the contributions made by Harvey S. Firestone, one of the 20th century´s greatest entrepreneurs," said BFS President Kenji Shibata in a press release.
BFS said visitors to the Web site can nominate individuals who have committed themselves to helping others on a local, state or national level. Later this year, BFS´s Trust Fund will make a $2,000 contribution to the qualified organization or charity named by each of the 100 winning nominees
BFS will contribute an additional $15,000, $10,000 or $5,000 to the designated charities of the top three honorees.
"I´ve had some folks (as nominees) who have been unbelievably selfless in some of the stuff they´ve done," said Christine Karbowiak, BFS vice president of public affairs.
Ms. Karbowiak said judging of the nominees will be administered by an independent company, to verify information about the nominees and the charitable organizations with which they are affiliated.
Shortly before nominations close on June 15, BFS will announce the members of a "blue ribbon" panel that will select the 100 winners. These contest judges will be people who are, "fairly prominent in the whole volunteer arena," Ms. Karbowiak said.
In addition to the Web site, this contest is being advertised in USA Today and People and Forbes magazines, she said.
The Web site also contains a timeline featuring events in the history of Firestone and a gallery of archival photographs, including photos of Mr. Firestone with prominent historical figures like Thomas Edison and Henry Ford.
There also is a test visitors can take to determine their knowledge of automobiles, a poll about driving trends and other activities.
Ms. Karbowiak said the Web site will "change on a monthly basis," to include elements like an interactive section on "great rides of the country," driving vacations and a consumer contest.
This centennial Web site was developed by Laughlin/Constable Inc. of Chicago and Milwaukee, which also redesigned the BFS corporate Web site last fall. &Copy;