STONY BROOK, N.Y. – Alan Alda has almost become synonymous with the iconic television series, M*A*S*H, in which he played an Army doctor during the Korean War. Since then, he has had supporting roles in The West Wing and The Aviator and is currently a visiting Professor at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. However, he also has a passion for charity work that extends beyond his acting credentials.
As an activist, Alan Alda has been an avid supporter of feminism and he was active in garnering support for the Equal Rights Amendment. He also took part in a critically acclaimed children’s record album entitled Free to Be You and Me in 1972, that encouraged gender neutrality, tolerance and accepting one’s identity.
In the early 1990’s, Alda and his wife created the Jenjo Foundation, an organization dedicated to providing assistance to low-income women and children. The Jenjo Foundation focused on youth development and violence prevention. In 2005, Alda also helped narrate a one-hour TV special called Fighting for Life for St. Jude Children’s Hospital. The special featured six patients being treated for childhood cancer at the hospital.
Alan Alda has also been active in advancing the study of science and making it more accessible to the general public. He participated in the BBC coverage of the opening of the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest and highest energy particle accelerator, at the European Organization for Nuclear Research in Geneva in 2008. And he also sits on the Advisory Board of the Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University.
Along with these major charitable pursuits, Alda has also been involved with other organizations including Feeding America, Clothes Off Our Back, Help USA and Mentoring USA. It is clear that Alan Alda is not only a talented actor, but a dedicated philanthropist and humanitarian as well and perhaps one of the most humanitarian celebrities of all time.
Sources: Look To The Stars: The World of Celebrity Giving, BBC, TV Guide