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Meet Our Oscar! Red Cross rolls out red carpet for one of its own


WASHINGTON — As the world prepares for the most watched awards show on television, the American Red Cross proudly presents our “Oscar”.

Oscar Barnes, Executive Director of the West Alabama Chapter in Tuscaloosa. He began his career at Red Cross eleven years ago in Vicksburg (MS). During his tenure with Red Cross, Oscar has been in the spotlight for some very dramatic roles.

During the 2005 storm season Oscar was the Executive Director of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter. “Of all the disasters I have been involved with, and all the people I have been allowed to serve, I will never forget the faces of the victims, or the dedication and commitment of the volunteers who served during Hurricane Katrina, that’s Red Cross, and I have never been more proud of being a part of something, looking back it still brings tears to my eyes.”

Oscar is famed for his morning greeting to the hundreds of Katrina volunteers as they checked in at Disaster Headquarters. At the beginning of each day Oscar stood with his microphone motivating and uplifting the volunteers for another day of service. “Good Morning, it’s a great day to be working with the Red Cross; it’s a great day to be helping people!”

Oscar praises the generosity of the American public. “Sometimes people refer to random acts of kindness,” Barnes said “It’s not random. People choose to help one another; people choose to make a difference. I have the privilege of watching ordinary people become extraordinary, I see next door neighbors become heroes simply by holding out their hands and touching lives. At the end of the day it doesn’t get any better than that.”

Oscar steps off the Red Carpet for the streets of Tuscaloosa, and is often surrounded by press and paparazzi covering the good deeds of the local Red Cross chapter. He is fashion forward and his signature line is a simple but poignant one – the Red Cross is here to help all people in need. You can get Oscar’s exclusive vintage look by visiting our Red Cross boutique store at

The Best Picture one can imagine is seeing the American Red Cross emblem on the scene to help those in need. Earlier this month, the Red Cross fed and sheltered thousands of people whose homes and businesses were without power from the massive winter storm that pummeled its way across the eastern half of the country and left almost 1.7 million customers in the dark from Oklahoma to Pennsylvania.

The Red Cross congratulates all the films up for Best Picture:

1. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button – from the cradle to the grave, the American Red Cross classes touch everyone’s life. Training from Infant Child CPR to babysitting and aquatics courses to Estate Planning - the Red Cross is your one-stop-shop to learn lifesaving skills. Visit to learn more!
2. Frost/Nixon – did you know since 1913 the President of the United States has been the Honorary Chairman of the American Red Cross…and that’s the truth and we swear by our oath to serve!
3. MILK – Got Red Cross? The Red Cross does the body good. Get involved and volunteer with this great organization. We welcome a diverse crowd headed by our new Diversity Officer, Floyd Pitts. Learn more at
4. SlumDog Millionaire – Who wants to be a millionaire? The Red Cross does. Help us raise $100 million for the Disaster Relief Fund. Your generous donations to the Disaster Relief Fund, depleted as a result of an active year of disasters, allow the Red Cross to mobilize volunteers who provide food, shelter and counseling to people who need it, whenever and wherever disasters occur. To lend a hand, please visit
5. The Reader – Read between the lines - there is no greater love story than saving someone’s life. Visit to sign up for a CPR/AED course!

If you would like to appear in a supporting role for the Red Cross, you can donate to the Disaster Relief Fund by visiting to make your donation. Enter to win a grand prize personal phone call from our own Red Cross celebrity – Oscar Barnes!

That’s a wrap!

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and counsels victims of disasters; provides nearly half of the nation’s blood supply; teaches lifesaving skills; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its humanitarian mission. For more information, please visit or join our blog at


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