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Dallas Resident John Darjean Named Allstate Give Back Day Hero

Community heroes, Rodney Peete kick off Allstate's National "Give Back Day" in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.

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12/08/2011 - DALLAS, Texas

Allstate Insurance Company today announced that John Darjean of Dallas has been named a 2012 Allstate Give Back Day Hero.  For the fourth consecutive year, Allstate is paying tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by encouraging individuals to volunteer in their communities on MLK Day 2012 (Jan. 16) through its Give Back Day program (allstate.com/givebackday). Rodney Peete, former NFL quarterback and co-founder of the HollyRod Foundation, is helping launch the 2012 program along with Darjean and three other outstanding community heroes who are recognized as leading volunteers in their communities. Peete and the four Heroes will be guiding Give Back Day activities in their home cities with Allstate.

"John Darjean is a remarkable individual who selflessly gives back, keeping Dr. King's legacy alive through his passionate commitment to service," said Joseph McCormick, field corporate relations manager for Allstate's Texas Region. "The volunteer efforts of the Give Back Day Heroes reflect the values and causes important to Allstate and communities across America. We hope their stories inspire others to put their good hands to work in their own communities every day and on Jan. 16, in honor of Dr. King."

John Darjean has served as a mentor and coach for the past ten years, teaching inner-city youth the fundamental of baseball in an effort to keep them off the streets and out of trouble. Darjean grew up in a rough neighborhood and struggled in school but baseball was the one thing that was able to keep him out of trouble. After four years playing minor league baseball for the New York Yankees, Darjean started Majors 2 Minors, a baseball league for inner-city kids. He co-founded the Dallas Baseball Alliance, a program aimed at coaching kids the fundamentals of baseball, while using the sport as a vessel to teach them discipline and life skills.

A lifelong volunteer with the Sickle Cell Anemia Foundation, having endured sickle cell traits since birth, Darjean also volunteers with Dallas Police Athletic League, the American Cancer Society. Darjean played the role of shortstop in the movie "For The Love of the Game" and he is currently making an independent film about African Americans in baseball.  In 2010, he was granted the NAACP Humanitarian Award for his extensive work in the Dallas community.

Darjean joins Alexandria Phillips from Atlanta, Robert Cradle from Baltimore and Joyce Calvin from Chicago as this year's class of 2012 Allstate Give Back Day Heroes. Each hero has helped create positive, sustainable change in their communities by volunteering to address important causes like domestic violence, economic empowerment and mentoring at-risk youth. On behalf of Darjean, Allstate is making a donation of $2,500 to Dallas Baseball Alliance. Heroes will attend The King Center's "Salute to Greatness" Awards in Atlanta on Jan. 14, 2012 for a celebration of individuals and organizations that exemplify excellence in leadership.

In addition, Peete will be attending a special Allstate Give Back Day volunteer event in Atlanta on MLK Day 2012. "It is an honor for me to be associated with this committed and selfless group of heroes. I have always believed in getting involved in causes that you are passionate about, and it's great to see these individuals mirroring the spirit of Dr. King by giving back," said Peete, who spent 16 years in the NFL as a quarterback. Peete and wife Holly's HollyRod Foundation, which helps those living with autism and Parkinson's disease, is currently developing plans to open their first "HollyRod4kids Compassionate Care Center for Autism" in Los Angeles, a central location where families in the autism community can go for support, guidance, treatment and hope.

Individuals interested in participating in Allstate Give Back Day 2012 can visit allstate.com/GiveBackDay to find local volunteer opportunities via VolunteerMatch, an online search engine promoting volunteerism and civic engagement by matching volunteers with charitable organizations and non-profits. Visitors to the website can view profiles of the four Allstate Give Back Day Heroes and learn about their community involvement through a series of video interviews. In 2011, more than 1,500 Allstate employees, agency owners and community members volunteered in dozens of cities across the country on Give Back Day.

About Allstate

The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer known for its "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®" slogan. Now celebrating its 80th anniversary as an insurer, Allstate is reinventing protection and retirement to help nearly 16 million households insure what they have today and better prepare for tomorrow. Consumers access Allstate insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives in the U.S. and Canada, as well as via www.allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®.

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Contact:

Kristen Beaman
(972) 871-6656
Kristen.Beaman@allstate.com

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