FACT: Every 26 seconds, a student drops out of high school in America. That adds up to more than 1.1 million students per year. [America’s Promise Alliance, 2008]
As Vice President of Community Affairs at WABC-TV, Saundra Thomas manages all on-air public service announcements, community outreach and station community projects. Thomas acts as a liaison between the public and the station and recommends news and programming coverage of important topics. She is responsible for philanthropic endeavors on behalf of the television station.
Prior to this role, Ms. Thomas held the position of writer-producer in WABC-TV’s Creative Services Department where she wrote, produced and edited on-air topical promotion for Eyewitness News, and award-winning ABC7 special programs.
An active board member, Ms. Thomas voluntarily supports numerous organizations. She is the current board chair of both Dancewave and Council for Unity and a member of Jazz Reach and the New York Women in Communications Foundation board. Thomas also sits on the advisory boards of The Grace Institute and Services for the Underserved.
Thomas is a recent recipient of an honorary doctorate in humane letters from St. Francis College (Brooklyn), the New York University College of Dentistry Dr. Harry Strusser Memorial Award for contributions of improved public health and was recently honored by Brooklyn Community Housing and Services for her work with WABC-TV on public service awareness in local communities. Thomas has also been a recipient of the Black Achievers in Industry award from the Harlem YMCA and various corporate honors.
A native of Boston, Ms. Thomas holds a B.A. in Journalism from Rutgers University and an M.A. in Media Studies from the New School. She resides with her family in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn.