SBD/October 21, 2011/People and Pop Culture

Names In The News

In St. Louis, Dan O'Neill notes MLB Rangers COO RICK GEORGE has "roots in the St. Louis area." George "spent the first 14 years of his life in Anderson, Ind., 285 miles northeast." The Georges "moved to Collinsville, Ill., by the time Rick was a high school freshman." George spent "many hours watching, listening and attending Cardinals games." George said, "There's no conflict for me. I'm rooting for the Rangers. Of course, if we weren't there, I'd be rooting for the Cardinals, no question" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 10/21).

BORN INTO HIS ROLE: In Indianapolis, Phil Richards profiles Colts Owner JIM IRSAY, whose "journey began as a 12-year-old ball boy in 1972." That is when Irsay's "tempestuous father, ROBERT, bought the Los Angeles Rams and swapped the franchise" with CARROLL ROSENBLOOM for the Colts. Since then, Irsay has been "almost continuously immersed in the personalities, operations, culture and traditions of the Colts and the NFL" (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 10/21).

AWARD-WINNING PERFORMANCE: Red Sox DH DAVID ORTIZ was named this year's winner of MLB's Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet. The annual award is "given in recognition of the baseball player who is the best representative of baseball due to his contributions on and off the field." MLB Commissioner BUD SELIG "lauded Ortiz for his community service efforts, explaining that they are the reason" he received the award (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 10/21). More than a million fans participated at chevybaseball.com/clemente to help decide this year's recipient (MLB.com, 10/20).

IN AND OUT: In Toronto, Joe Warmington notes some would argue Hockey HOFer WAYNE GRETZKY "had a not-so-great appearance at the Toronto East General Hospital Wednesday," and it "has left some disappointed." A news release had said that Gretzky would be at the hospital for the "unveiling of the da Vinci Surgical System, to help treat patients with prostate cancer." Gretzky "was handed a lab coat, posed for a few fast frames" and then "walked through the crowd on his way to a waiting car." TEGH Foundation BOD Chair MICHAEL BURNS said, "We never set any expectations. It did great for us, helping us raise enough money for us to almost reach our $5-million goal. This was a huge win all around." A person traveling with Gretzky said that it was "merely a case where he was expecting it to be a short pop in and out." But when he arrived, Gretzky became "disconcerted knowing there were people who paid $5,000 a ticket waiting for him" (TORONTO SUN, 10/21).

NAMES: Fortune's "40 Under 40" list of business' "hottest rising stars" includes Under Armour Chair, President & CEO KEVIN PLANK (12), Univision Networks President CESAR CONDE (14) and Puma CEO Franz Koch (24) (CNN.com, 10/20)....Producer/writer JOE CACACI Thursday announced plans for "INVISIBLE MEN," a feature film account of the personalities that made up the Negro Leagues, and their stories before the integration of MLB (THE DAILY)....JOHN CUSACK and JOHNNY KNOXVILLE will star in “CARNIVAL,” a comedy directed by JOSH STERN. Cusack will play a “sports scout sent to Rio De Janeiro during the over-the-top bacchanalia of Carnival to recruit the world’s best soccer player” (HOLLYWOODREPORTER.com, 10/19)....Skateboarder TONY HAWK has joined the cast of “PARENTAL GUIDANCE,” a movie starring BILLY CRYSTAL and BETTE MIDLER (N.Y. POST, 10/21).
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