Monday, October 10, 2005

10/10/05 A Brief Commercial Break

You will rarely find me doing this, but I am going to give a recommendation to two businesses/persons. One of them does relate to missing persons and one does not, although it did effect us as a public charity in terms of your dollars spent.

Commercial #1:

We always used our old spare personal phones for the Project Jason telephone line. We went through several of them, as they were older, and one accidental spill was all it took to put them out of commission. We decided we were past due to have our own phone for this work. We chose a cordless headset model, so that on longer conversations, I could move about the house and not be in front of the PC, which opened up the use of it for other family members. (Yes, the PC belongs to us, not Project Jason...oh, the joys of being a small nonprofit.)

I was very excited to finally get a new phone. I researched for the best price for the model we wanted, and found it with a company called I called them and was told the full price with shipping costs. I had my treasuer write out the check. I then went into a very busy timeframe and did not get around to mailing it for a couple of weeks. When I finally did, I went back on the Internet, looked up the model and price again so that I could send a copy with my order. I was dismayed to see that the phone had gone up $25!

I wrote out my own check for the balance so that I could get it mailed off. I figured I would get the remainder from my treasurer later on. It wasn't too many days later when I recieved shipping notification. I was confused because the price noted on the form was the original price, not the increased price.

When the phone arrived, there was nothing in it but a packing slip. I still wasn't sure what had happened. Then, in the mail, I received a thank you letter, and my personal check returned to me explaining that I had looked up the product on a different, but very similarly named website!

I would have never known this is what happened, and would have not questioned the "price increase". They could have kept our money and no one would have been the wiser, except for them. I applaud their honesty and thank them for their speedy service. Thank you, HeadSetPlus.

Commercial #2:

Late one night, I recieved an email from a woman named Dr. Donna Schwontkowski. She was on the verge of publishing a book, and wanted to include an insert with photos and information on missing persons, as that is a cause near and dear to her, and also has a relation to the subject matter of her book.

I was quite happy to oblige her, and we ended up with 11 of our families getting their missing loved one's photo and information in the insert. It was more than just a photo and a few physical statistics. There were several paragraphs on each person.

I'm sure that it is not an easy thing to start sales on a new book, and as Dr. Donna helped us, I wanted to try to help her in some small way. As you read her press release, you will see the relation of her subject matter to our cause. The book may be of interest to many of our readers who are crime and investigative hobbyists and professionals as well. Take a look:

“Trained eyes watching is what it’s all about,” says Dr. Donna Schwontkowski, author of the newly released book Million Dollar Memory for Names & Faces. Crime-Stopping Techniques to Help Find Missing Children, Criminals & Terrorists. “Once society has people trained to see faces so they can be remembered, many good things can happen. On a community level, learning how to remember faces translates to people remembering the faces of missing persons for longer periods of time. It’s an important skill needed in times of community crisis. Each tornado, flood, hurricane, or earthquake crisis needs people with trained eyes watching to help find the missing and match them to their family.”

Learning how to remember faces also translates to the public remembering the faces of their community’s wanted criminals and on a national level, the faces of terrorists. When an entire community knows who they are and what they’ve done, they’re a lot less inclined to let a criminal get away with another crime. Because many criminals commit crimes that they know they can get away with, this can make an impact. Schwontkowski is starting seminars for community watch groups to remember names and faces. “Although we already have people looking for missing persons, criminals and terrorists, we need TRAINED eyes watching for them,” she says. “The more trained eyes watching, the safer our society can become.”

Face recognition scientists report that the average person’s face recognition skills don’t improve much past the age of 11. However, the patent-pending method taught in this book increases awareness of at least 40 characteristics that make each face recognizable, whether the face has aged, and has lost or added a mustache, beard, or hair.

“It’s important to go beyond knowing these 40 characteristics and learn how to describe a face to someone… If you had to describe a family member to someone, could you do it with words other than eye color, hair color, height and weight? Most people can’t.

When you see the variation in faces, though, you find three major types of eyebrows, eight eye shapes, three types of nostrils, eight face shapes… Moreover, people often believe that those of a certain race have the same characteristics but this isn’t true at all.”

Schwontkowski conducted two pilot studies this year and found that by using her method, police officers were able to improve their professional face recognition skills by 87% while the general public improved by over 150%.

On a personal level, remembering faces can help you get ahead in business, no matter what your profession is. Remembering faces is essential to good socialization skills.” The book includes chapters on how to remember names to go with faces. “There’s a good feeling that develops in another person when you remember their name,” Schwontkowski says. “As we get older, we tend to lose this ability if it’s not practiced frequently. You can get it back with the practice exercises in the book.”

For more information, visit the website or contact Dr. Donna Schwontkowski at

Thank you, Dr. Donna, for caring about the missing. We wish you much success with your book.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too would like to thank Dr. Donna. Because of her compassion and concern for the missing, we were able to have Maura's case featured in her book. Dr. Donna took the time to email me several times and to spend a considerable amount of time on the phone discussing Maura in order to prepare a suitable presentation of her case.

Thanks again to both Kelly and Dr. Donna!

Advocate for Maura Murray\mauramissing.html

"Our help is from the Lord, who created heaven and earth." Psalm 24:8

8:45 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.