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Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers paid cancer survivor Maggie a visit in season one of itsAaron.com.

Rodgers, Gruber ad campaign earns Emmy nod

For Green Bay Packers fans, last season had some ups and downs. The team had wins and losses and ended their run without making it to the Super Bowl.

But quarterback Aaron Rodgers was part of another team that racked up only wins.

Rodgers worked with producer Greg Marshall, local attorney David Gruber and the team from CI Design for a group of videos that were featured on itsAaron.com. The season one commercial campaign put the spotlight on the MACC Fund (Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer) that featured Rodgers' surprise visits to children battling cancer.

The effort earned a regional Emmy award nomination from the Chicago/Midwest Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in the category of "Outstanding Achievement for Commercials – Campaign."

"It's pretty exciting," Marshall said of the nomination. "They knew what they wanted to accomplish, and we came up with a number of ideas … they wanted a creative way to maximize the partnership."

Marshall, who has won awards for his original music work, directed the video effort and handled the logistics of the production. That meant working with Rodgers' availability during the football season, and working with Gruber and the MACC Fund to line up the families for the special visit.

"With some of the families, the moms didn't tell the dads, so they were just as excited as the children were," Marshall said.

The campaign is a partnership between Rodgers and Gruber of Gruber Law Offices. It tells an incredible story of small acts of kindness making a huge impact in the lives of children.

"There are too many favorite memories from the itsAaron.com project to point out just one moment. However, one memory that is firmly entrenched in my mind is the looks on the faces of the children when they first saw Aaron," Gruber said.

"The looks were all priceless, yet unique – the look of shock, the look of 'wow, is this really happening to me?' Also entrenched in my mind is the heartfelt 'thank you' from all the individuals and families involved in the project."

Gruber pointed out that the videos highlight that doing something small can have a huge impact.

"I continue to be moved by the truly awesome kids and organizations. The itsAaron.com project really brings home the concept that one person can make a difference and highlights the need to be involved in and give back to your community. Everyone can help!"

Marshall is currently rolling out the series of videos of the second seasons staring some new organizations with the team going to, "unique places and landmarks in Milwaukee."

"It has been really beautiful to see how those surprise visits have made a difference for the MACC Fund and in the lives of Maggie, Dijon and Brandon. Thank you to everyone who has helped share their stories," Rodgers wrote on the website.

"Season two is here, and we're excited to introduce you to some new people and organizations who are making the world a better place. We had a lot of fun filming the three episodes that you'll see on itsAaron.com over the next few months."

I asked Gruber where this effort ranks in his advertisements and community involvement projects.

"The itsAaron.com project ranks at the very top. Aaron and I came together to partner to create itsAaron.com to raise awareness for amazing individuals and organizations that make the world a better place. This is a unique project and something I am very proud to be a part of," Gruber said.

"Further, the itsAaron.com project has provided Aaron and me a platform to raise awareness for inspirational individuals and organizations that are truly making a difference in our community. I will never forget the energy and enthusiasm of the itsAaron.com visits – the project has been, and continues to be, an unforgettable experience."

Marshall, the chief storyteller and producer at CI Design, said that he was truly impressed with the organizations he has had the honor of working with through the seasons, from the MACC Fund to Operation Dream.

"We did all the shooting (on season one) on one day with Aaron. It was pretty wild. It was fun," Marshall said.

Gruber said he was honored and privileged to be a part of the itsAaron.com project.

"Greg Marshall is truly is a master producer and storyteller. Of course, without Aaron's personal commitment to giving back none of this would be possible. Each and every time I view the videos, it brings me right back to the day of filming and what unbelievably fulfilling, life-changing days they were," he said.

Talkbacks

1954 | Oct. 7, 2013 at 12:16 p.m. (report)

I love Aaron, I always have thought he was a good guy. My 4 year old Granddaughter loves him too. One of her first words were touch down Greenbay. But more importantly, his giving back to the community. My sister was just diognised with stage 4 cancer. No, shes not a Packer fan and does not like football. but I know how important it is that someone reaches out. Aaron has a good heart and you can see, he has been truly blessed. Love you Aaron...

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TosaJim | Oct. 7, 2013 at 10:52 a.m. (report)

It's pretty obvious Becky....Gruber is an ambulance chaser and he used Rodgers to show everyone what a nice guy he really is. A little like how Braun used Rodgers to show people he was ok too.

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Becky1 | Oct. 6, 2013 at 9:03 a.m. (report)

Exactly! I find the whole connection kind of suspect. It is never explained WHY the Grube-ster is there, just lurking and waiting for his named to be dropped.

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TosaJim | Oct. 3, 2013 at 4:10 p.m. (report)

I think it's great that Rodgers can find time to do good things for the community and some of the special kids in it......but I hate the fact that it's all recorded and aired with David Gruber in tow.....as soon as you tie in with a paying sponsor it looses all credibility. I'm assuming Rodgers is paid by Gruber for this series of ads....or is he doing this for free? Anyone know?

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