He raised his voice and united a nation
By Mary Jane Park, Times staff writer
April 23, 2006
Is there anyone who doesn't know "America's tenor," Daniel Rodriguez?
The former New York City police officer who became nationally known after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. On Thursday, he performed at Resurrection House's annual New Beginnings breakfast, held in St. Petersburg Coliseum.
With "a voice so beautiful it would be a pleasure to be arrested by him,'' according to master of ceremonies Dick Crippen, Rodriguez brought lumps to throats and tears to eyes with his voice. So did his personal story. "Most people thought I just woke up one day and started singing," he said.
Rodriguez began his musical studies at age 12 and had his Carnegie Hall debut at 17, he said. Two years later, he fathered a son and took jobs to support his family, among them short order cook, catering manager, taxi driver and cabinetmaker "for about a day and a half". He worked at the post office, then joined the Police Department. There, he delighted numerous audiences. Through an introduction by former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, he studied with Placido Domingo for several years.
After the attacks on New York, he and other rescue workers helped people leave the area now known as Ground Zero, "but we couldn't leave,'' he said. People brought them food, clothing, money and other necessities to help them through those difficult times.
That was an apt segue into describing the mission of Resurrection House, a faith-based organization that focuses on education and work force development, said Ford Kyes, chairman of the Resurrection House board of directors. Kyes, who is also the chief executive at St. Anthony's Health Care, said the hospital has employed numerous Resurrection House graduates.
Oct 2006 Daniel to sing at SIMHS
America's Tenor to raise his voice for special people
October 17th in Staten Island
A presentation of fur fashions by L'Furs of New Dorp will be included in the evening's proceedings. The fundraiser benefits developmentally disabled and neurologically impaired infants, children and adults served by the Pouch Center, a division of the Staten Island Mental Health Society (SIMHS).
Rodriguez lent his soaring voice and patriotic spirit to New Yorkers after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, with his stirring renditions of "God Bless America" and other songs. He currently travels throughout the country singing at charitable events, including the USO, City of Hope, and law enforcement organizations, where he not only entertains but inspires people who are facing adversity.
America's Tenor Daniel Rodriguez will perform at the annual Dinner/Show fundraiser of the Elizabeth W. Pouch Center for Special People of the Staten Island Mental Health Society, on Tuesday, October 17, at the Hilton Garden Inn, Bloomfield, 7 p.m.
Nov 17, 2006
World Children's Day at McDonald's to Benefit Children Around the World
McDonald's CEO Jim Skinner joined by `Dancing with the Stars' finalists Mario Lopez and Emmitt Smith, the Duchess of York and other stars at anniversary event supporting Ronald McDonald House Charities
November 16, 2006--World Children's Day at McDonald's, the company's largest annual fundraiser for children, turned five years old today. Entertainers, musicians, executives and children came together in New York City for a worldwide celebration to support fundraising efforts conducted in over 100 countries for Ronald McDonald House Charities and other children's causes.
Just hours after judges announced the winning couple on the hit television series "Dancing With The Stars" season finale, finalists Mario Lopez and dance partner Karina Smirnoff, along with Emmitt Smith and dance partner Cheryl Burke, joined McDonald's CEO Jim Skinner, World Children's Day global ambassador Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, actress Sofia Vergara and other entertainers at the 42nd Street McDonald's. After meeting with children and families staying at the Ronald McDonald House(R) of New York City, event participants stopped behind the counter to help raise funds for World Children's Day.
"McDonald's has a rich tradition of being a good community partner and neighbor," said Skinner. "As the needs of the world's children have increased over time, so has the need for companies and citizens to play a more active role in affecting positive change."
Kicking off the celebration was "America's Tenor" and New York's own Daniel Rodriguez best known for his heroic service as a New York City police officer on 9/11 and his stirring rendition of "God Bless America" at subsequent memorial services performing "Aren't They All Our Children." The song was written by 14-time Grammy award winner David Foster in honor of World Children's Day at McDonald's. Broadway performer and R&B recording artist Nita Whitaker closed the event with "Stand up for Love," the World Children's Day anthem written by Beyonce Knowles and David Foster, which was released last year by Destiny's Child.