SBJ/July 28-Aug. 3, 2014/People and Pop Culture

Summer Reading — Part III

A final peek at executives’ beach books



PAUL SWANGARD

Managing director, Warsaw Sports Marketing Center, University of Oregon

“The Billionaire’s Vinegar,” by Benjamin Wallace
Love a good glass of wine … figure this book will convince me to not buy a bottle over $50.

“Unbroken,” by Laura Hillenbrand
A reread already planned before Louis Zamperini passed away in early July. Don’t be lazy and wait for the movie in December. Hillenbrand’s storytelling is captivating.

“The Great Tamasha,” by James Astill
Taking my students to Mumbai in September as part of our annual study tour of Asia. Wanted a primer on cricket and the sport culture in India.

“Remarkable,” by Lizzie K. Foley
Ten-year-old daughter Ella and I are working our way through this book at bedtime. Best part of summer is time for more bedtime stories.

JOE DE SENA
CEO and co-founder, Spartan Race

“Atlas Shrugged,” by Ayn Rand
It’s my favorite book and I think it may be time to read it again as I am growing concerned over the future of capitalism.

 “No Easy Day: The Autobiography of a Navy SEAL,” by Mark Owen (AKA Matt Bissonnette)
This inspirational story shows so much of what is great with our men and women in uniform. Many military personnel participate in Spartan Races, so I have developed partnerships and friendships with them. This book embodies the teamwork, self-sacrifice and dedication that makes them truly remarkable people.

“Lone Survivor,” by Marcus Luttrell
My respect for the military was raised with this inspiring and gut-wrenching film. But to truly understand Marcus Luttrell’s experience I need to hear it in his own words. From what others have told me, the book is even more powerful than the acclaimed film.

BRIAN CORCORAN
President and owner, Shamrock Sports & Entertainment

“Unbroken,” by Laura Hillenbrand
An inspiring true story of Olympic runner and war hero Louis Zamperini. As an avid runner and grandson to a former U.S. Marines lieutenant colonel, it hits close to home and exemplifies what hard work, determination and never-give-up attitudes can do in life to overcome all odds.

“Thinking, Fast And Slow,” by Daniel Kahneman
The winner of the Nobel in economic science discusses how we make choices in business and personal life. With my wife and I blessed with our first child due in September and a fast-growing business, figured it was a good time to go to school on pointers to optimize the ever-elusive balance.

LUIS PEREZ
Senior vice president and chief financial officer, Detroit Lions

I’ve gotten into a routine where I read books my daughters read for school and which they recommend that I read. It’s sort of our own little book club. Two of those which I am reading and will read while on vacation are “I Am Malala,” by Malala Yousafzai, and “The Things They Carried,” by Tim O’Brien.
I’ve also picked up and am looking forward to reading “Brain on Fire,” by Susannah Cahalan, because I’m fascinated by this true story and feel inspired by this woman’s perseverance and fight for survival. I would imagine it’s quite rare for someone who has suffered from such a brain-related illness to get to a point where they can go back and tell their story.
Next is “The Burglary,” by Betty Medsger, because I think it’s a fascinating exposé and account of history altering events. And “The Arsenal of Democracy,” by A.J. Baime, because of its ties to Detroit (my new hometown) and the role of Ford in WWII.
Finally are a couple of best-sellers which I’ve been wanting to get to: “American Sniper,” by Chris Kyle, and “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” by Daniel Kahneman.

MOLLY O’KEEFE
Publisher, Runner’s World / Running Times

“Bossypants,” by Tina Fey
What working woman can’t relate to her? Keeping a sense of humor while I “Liz Lemon” my workplace is what keeps me sane. Knowing I’m not the only one who thinks like her empowers me daily and I feel lucky to get the joke.

“My Life on the Run,” by Bart Yasso
I like to refer back to this book every so often, to be reminded about the transformative power of running. I have the privilege of being around Runner’s World Chief Running Officer Bart Yasso a lot, hearing his stories and seeing firsthand why he has been called the Mayor of Running. This book captures the positive, infectious spirit of Bart.

“The Fault in Our Stars,” by John Green
My 14-year-old daughter, McKenzie, read this book in a weekend and was an emotional wreck, so I had to add it to my reading list. The sarcasm laced with humor tied in with cancer and youth was a gut-wrenchingly beautiful love story.

“The Invention of Wings,” by Sue Monk Kidd
A wonderful story set in 19th-century Charleston about two very different women, one a slave and one a member of a prominent family, and how their struggles mirror each other in very complex ways.

JIM MURPHY
Athletic director, Davidson College

“Empire of the Summer Moon,” by S.C. Gwynne
A brutally truthful history of the rise and fall of the Comanche nation.

“Living Hell: The Dark Side of the Civil War,” by Michael C.C. Adams
A counterpoint to the Civil War’s glamorization in American lore.

“John Wayne: The Life and Legend,” by Scott Eyman
John Wayne acted like the man you wanted to be.


TIM ERENSEN
Partner, Eiger Marketing Group

I have a ton of books queued up on my nightstand at home:
“The Pro,” by Butch Harmon
A great read for any member of Winged Foot or any fan of the game and one of golf’s great families. It’s a story about golf and Butch’s father, Claude, who was the head pro at Winged Foot for more than 30 years, but it’s also a coming-of-age tale about fathers and sons and passing along a lifetime of wisdom to the next generation.

Daily Racing Form
I love my time at the track and checking in on our horses, so this is the easiest to check off my summer reading list. After 120 years, DRF is still the go-to publication for any fan of thoroughbred racing, or anyone involved in the Sport of Kings (horse racing, NOT boxing).

“Fans Not Customers,” by Vernon Hill
I’m fascinated by people who translate their diverse interests into successful endeavors. As a retail specialist, Vernon Hill built two banking giants; as a dog lover he launched one of the first pet insurance businesses in the U.S.; and as a golfer he developed Galloway National, one of the top golf courses in the U.S.

“Busting Vegas,” by Ben Mezrich
Every gambler dreams of finding a foolproof system. I’m convinced that, through research, practice and a little luck, the perfect system is in reach.

SCOTT MILLEISEN
Managing director, J.P. Morgan Private Bank

“The Billionaire and the Mechanic” is one on my list.  I am interested to learn more about the partnership between Larry Ellison and his team, including an auto mechanic, that led to the America’s Cup win. Teamwork, sports, business and improbable success all in one read … looking forward to getting to the beach with it!

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