FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 15, 2008
G3 & Associates
Amy Hale, Director of Communications
SEATTLE – The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) recently recognized Moneytree Inc. founder and CEO
Dennis Bassford for his philanthropic contributions at its 23rd annual Ambassadorial Reception and Awards Dinner
held on January 21, 2008.
Held at the New York Sheraton Hotel and Towers, more than 2,000 people attended the awards dinner, making it
one of the nation’s largest events honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Organized by CORE, a national civil rights
organization, the annual dinner received broad support from leaders in the business, diplomatic, civic, religious,
entertainment and philanthropic communities.
“I am humbled and honored to be recognized by CORE,” stated Mr. Bassford. “CORE is an important and historic
champion of equality in America and its work is as relevant and crucial today as when they first took up the cause
In addition to his personal and professional philanthropic contributions, Mr. Bassford was recognized as a pioneer
in the financial services industry and for the vital role his industry has played in bringing real access, as well asincreased choices and financial services to people from all walks of life.
“Mr. Bassford’s personal commitment to giving back is part of his company’s corporate mission,” said CORE
Chairman Roy Innis. “Moneytree’s support of financial literacy and job training, its commitment to providing
consumers with real access to the financial tools and education by which they can better their lives not only
matches our values at CORE but puts action to the causes that Dr. King championed.”
In addition to Mr. Bassford, CORE also will recognize Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez (Ret.), former commander of US
troops in Iraq and ministerial and business visionary Bishop T.D. Jakes at this year’s celebration. Multiracial and
nondenominational, the Potter’s House, Bishop Jakes’ church in Dallas, has more than 50 active outreach
ministries, more than 30,000 members and a full-time staff of 300.
Past Honorees include notables such as: Nobel Peace Prize laureates Elie Wiesel and Dr. Norman Borlaug;
former Secretary of State James Baker; Secretary Generals of the United Nations Javiar Perez de Cuellar and
Boutrus Boutrus Ghali; Civil Rights veteran & Chairman of Innercity Broadcasting, Percy Sutton; Neurosurgeon
Dr. Benjamin Carson; music and entertainment legends Patti LaBelle, Nancy Wilson, Leonard Bernstein, and Toni
Braxton; film and stage legends Richard Pryor, Morgan Freeman, Robert DeNiro, Audrey Hepburn, Oliver Stone,
James Earl Jones and Samuel L. Jackson; sports legends Willie Mays and Roy Jones, Jr., World Heavyweight
Champions Evander Holyfield and Muhammad Ali; Olympic Champions Carl Lewis and Jackie Joyner-Kersee;
media giants Ted Turner and Connie Chung, Baseball Legend Hank Aaron and the Mother of the modern day civil
rights movement, Mrs. Rosa Parks.
About Dennis Bassford
Dennis Bassford is the founder and CEO of Moneytree, Inc., a retail financial services company based in Seattle,
Washington. Mr. Bassford opened the first Moneytree store in 1983 at the age of 26. Since then, Moneytree has
grown to become one of Washington's largest privately held companies with more than 130 branches in five
western states. Moneytree is an industry and business leader and has consistently been voted by its employees
as one of Washington's Best Companies to Work For in surveys by Washington CEO Magazine, The Puget
Sound Business Journal and NWjobs.com.
Mr. Bassford graduated from Boise State University in 1980 with a Bachelor's in business administration. In 1999,
he was honored by his alma mater for his personal leadership and commitment to community involvement with
the Distinguished Alumni Award.
Regarded as an expert and a pioneer in the short-term credit industry, Mr. Bassford is a founding and current
member of the Board of Directors of the Community Financial Services Association (CFSA), the national trade
association of payday lenders. He also has served as the President of the Washington State trade association,
the Financial Service Centers of Washington (FiSCWA) since 1994, and has served as a board member of the
Financial Service Centers of America (FiSCA) since 1999.
Mr. Bassford’s personal commitment to giving back is part of his company’s corporate mission which has earned
it tenured recognition as one of Washington's Top 25 Most Philanthropic Companies.
Mr. Bassford is an accomplished speaker and regularly presents to civic and other groups on topics such as
consumer credit trends, regulation and financial services. Mr. Bassford's experience and insights also have been
featured in scholarly articles, as well as in countless local and national televised and print media interviews.
A privately-owned, family run business, Moneytree is headquartered in Seattle and is the premier provider of
check cashing and payday loan services on the West Coast. In addition to these core services, Moneytree offers
prepaid debit and gift cards, money orders, wire funds transfers, and ATM services. A leader in philanthropic
giving, Moneytree supports many organizations that benefit youth, families and financial literacy. For more
information about Moneytree, please visit www.moneytreeinc.com.
Founded in 1942, CORE is the third oldest and one of the "Big Four" civil rights groups in the United States. From
the protests against "Jim Crow" laws of the 40's through the "Sit-ins" of the 50's, the "Freedom Rides" of the 60's,
the cries for "Self-Determination" in the 70's, "Equal Opportunity" in the 80's, community and economic
development in the 90's, to their current focus on financial literacy and financial choice, CORE has championed
true equality. As one of the pioneers of the civil rights movement, CORE has paved the way for the nation to