Vital Signs October 2009



Red Cross to launch new Web site soon

Blood drive coordinator reaches 15-year milestone



100% Club (Blood drive sponsors who met or exceeded goal)

New Sponsors


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Red Cross to launch new Web site soon


In late November, the American Red Cross will launch a new Web site to better serve our sponsors, blood donors, volunteers, and the public.  The new site will replace the existing regional Web sites to become a one-stop location for everything related to Red Cross blood donation.   

The new site retains the current functionalities while offering many new features and benefits to help you educate and recruit donors, such as:

  • More thorough information related to blood and blood donation.

  • Online toolkits giving you access to national and regional blood drive promotion materials.

  • Special sections for first-time blood donors and youth donors to help you engage new blood donors.

  • The same appointment scheduling functionality, with donors using their current log-ins and following the same process to schedule their appointments.

  • Access to back issues of Vital Signs, our blood drive coordinator newsletter.

  • Simpler, more intuitive navigation.

  • And much more!

The new Web site will serve the entire country, but will include a special section for you to access news, events and promotional information from your local Red Cross by simply entering your ZIP code.

Visit our current Web site often, and watch for the announcement about the new Web site launch.  We’ll be eager to receive your comments and feedback.


Left to right:  Walt Muralt, president of Muralt's Travel Plaza; Marilee Stott, blood recipient; Bryan Porch, blood donor.

Blood drive coordinator reaches 15-year milestone


Walt Muralt has done it again, wrapping up another successful Drive to Save Lives in Missoula, MT.   In more than 15 years, Muralt’s blood drives have helped raise more than 4,000 blood donations for patients served by the American Red Cross.

Muralt’s Travel Plaza is a busy place.  Every day of the year it serves the community and travelers as a truck stop, café, repair shop, and more, but during one special time each year, it’s also the hub for the yearly blood drive. 

“I look to all the individuals I do business with, from bankers to insurance providers to office suppliers and more, and I invite them to get involved,” said Muralt.  “It’s not that hard to find supporters; you just need to ask the right people and recognize the ones most likely to give.”

While local community outreach methods have been effective in attracting new donors, Muralt admits one of his best recruiting techniques is to target donors who have given at previous drives.  He said if donors know about the drive well in advance and schedule their appointments early, they will literally show up on time and with their sleeves rolled up.  He also works very closely with his local Red Cross representative Julie Brehm in the planning, implementation, and event-day stages of the draw.

“I like to inspire people to give.  I think everybody gets so busy with their lives sometimes that they forget that giving blood is a big deal and it can help save lives,” said Muralt.

Muralt has also invited blood recipients to the plaza on the day of the drive. Last year he was joined by area resident Marilee Stott, who was diagnosed with AML leukemia and received almost 200 units of blood.  Stott now personally thanks donors by handing out personal hugs and chocolate kisses at local Red Cross blood drives, including the Drive to Save Lives.

In all his years of coordinating blood drives, Muralt says he feels inspired when people share stories about donating blood at some of his earliest drives.   While he admits the very first blood drive had dismal results, the successes in subsequent years have given him the motivation to continue hosting and improving the blood drives year after year.

We’d like to thank Walt Muralt for his work with the Drive to Saves Lives, making a difference in so many people’s lives over so many years.






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American Red Cross Blood Services • Lewis and Clark Region

6616 South 900 East • Salt Lake City, UT 84121

(801) 892-4000 • •


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