Nextel Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTL) announced today that Hollywood actress Pamela Anderson will serve as the Grand Marshal of the 21st NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Saturday, May 21 (7:00 p.m., EST on FX). R&B Vocalist Anthony Hamilton will sing the National Anthem prior to the start of the marquee sports event, which awards $1 million to the race winner.

Currently producer and star of the FOX comedy series STACKED, which was recently renewed for its second season, Anderson was born in Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, and began her Hollywood career in 1991 when she was hired to play "Lisa" on Home Improvement. The following year Anderson received her most famous role, playing "C.J. Parker" on Baywatch. In 1998, she worked as the executive producer and star of V.I.P. A film actress as well, Anderson has starred in movies including The Taking of Beverly Hills, The Evolution of Mr. E., and Barb Wire.

Hamilton is a native of Charlotte, N.C., and started his music career at the age of 10 in his church choir. In 1993, Hamilton moved to New York City to pursue a music career. His break came when he received the lead singing spot on the Nappy Roots track "Po" Folks, which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 2003 in the Best Rap/Song Collaboration category. He was then signed to Jermaine Dupri's So So Def label where he released Comin' from Where I'm From. His latest album, Soulife, is scheduled to be released in June 2006.

The field of drivers competing in the 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge qualified by winning a NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series points race in 2004 or 2005. The field also includes previous event champions who are still active, the winner of the NEXTEL Open and one driver to be selected through fan voting from the NEXTEL Open.

To date, more than 365,000 votes have been cast by fans eager to see their favorite driver compete in the 2005 NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge.

Kasey Kahne, driver of the No. 9 Dodge and one of the front-runners in the fan voting competition, raced his way into the event by winning Saturday's Chevrolet American Revolution 400 at Richmond International Raceway. This creates a shuffle among fan votes and the drivers vying for the vote-in position. Fans are encouraged to continue voting for their selected driver trackside at The Nextel Experience, at participating Nextel Retail Stores, Nextel Racing Experience Events, online at, through their Nextel phones by texting "STAR" to 7827, or by visiting the final stops on the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge Trophy Tour in Mooresville, Concord and Charlotte.

About Nextel Nextel Communications, a FORTUNE 200 company based in Reston, Va., is a leading provider of fully integrated wireless communications services and has built the largest guaranteed all-digital wireless network in the country covering thousands of communities across the United States. Today 95 percent of FORTUNE 500 companies are Nextel customers. Nextel and Nextel Partners, Inc. currently serve 297 of the top 300 U.S. markets where approximately 262 million people live or work.