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Volume 24 No. 116

People and Pop Culture

Bank of America Senior VP/Global Sponsorship Marketing JEFF ELLIOTT is leaving his position at the bank to become COO of motorsports marketing agency Breaking Limits. Elliott will be responsible for the development of the agency’s communications, consulting and event business areas. He will report to Breaking Limits CEO BOBBY LABONTE. Meanwhile, BOB DICKINSON is leaving his position as American Le Mans VP/Media & Communications to become COO of The Racers Group (TRG), a motorsports team that competes in the Rolex Sports Car and NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. As COO, Dickinson will oversee business development, marketing, communications, special events and customer relations. He will be based in the organization’s Charlotte-area office. Dickinson previously worked for Turner Sports, the Falcons and in college athletics (Tripp Mickle, SportsBusiness Journal).  

EXECS: Trail Blazers Senior VP/Business Affairs J.E. ISAAC will resign at the end of July. He will continue to work with the team as a consultant. The Trail Blazers "will reorganize around Isaac's departure, assigning his responsibilities to other executives who will consult with Isaac as needed." Isaac began his 22-year career with the Trail Blazers as Dir of Game Operations (, 6/21)....The World Choir Games named JIM DOWNS Senior Dir of Operations. Downs has previously served as ESPN X Games Dir of Sports & Competitions and World Equestrian Games Project Manager. He also "created the first Great Outdoor Games for ESPN" (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 6/22)....The NHL Kings named VINCENT IRCANDIA Business Operations and Analytics Manager and CASSY NIEHAUS HR Generalist (THE DAILY). 

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Super Bowl XLV ticket holders "displaced during the seating fiasco at Cowboys Stadium in February said Tuesday in a court filing they should be compensated for lost income on top of the other expenses they incurred." The documents contend that "ticket holders who lost their seats or had obstructed views 'at a very minimum' should be paid for lost income suffered as a result of traveling to suburban Arlington." The NFL last month in its motion to have the suit dismissed said that it "satisfied its obligations to the displaced fans by offering them the actual prices they paid for their tickets as well as all documented travel, lodging and meal expenses." MICHAEL AVENATTI, an L.A.-based attorney representing the ticket holders, said that he "expects to take the depositions" of NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL and Cowboys Owner JERRY JONES before the end of the summer (AP, 6/21).

A NIGHT AT THE MOVIES: In L.A., Zeitchik & Fritz reported a movie about F1 racing, "RUSH," is "being shopped with veteran director RON HOWARD as the filmmaker." The film, a "development project currently making the rounds of Hollywood studios," tells the story of the '70s "rivalry between the late playboy British driver JAMES HUNT and his nemesis, Austrian champion NIKI LAUDA." The project is "being partly financed by Cross Creek Pictures, the company that put up some of the money" for "BLACK SWAN" (, 6/21)....HBO is putting together a team "for a drama series project loosely based on former heavyweight champion MIKE TYSON's early life in the boxing ring." SPIKE LEE is set to direct "DA BRICK," which will "reflect aspects of Tyson's upbringing" (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 6/22).

NAMES: Auburn Univ. football players Sunday night were given BCS National Championship rings, "another national title ring and an SEC Championship ring." The cost to the university "was at least $80,000, which is under the limit allowed by the NCAA." Another set of rings "were ordered for football-related members of the athletic department, bringing the total for all rings to approximately $150,000" (, 6/21)....The Mets yesterday announced a partnership with Tuesday's Children, founded in '01 "to help families who lost relatives" in the Sept. 11 attacks. The new initiative "will provide mentors to children who lost their parents as a result of sicknesses while they were serving in the relief efforts at Ground Zero" (N.Y. POST, 6/22)....The NHLPA and the Heart & Stroke Foundation announced that this year's Beard-a-thon raised $190,080.24. The program had 597 NHL Playoffs beard-growers and 2,225 fan pledges (NHLPA)....Skier LINDSEY VONN was presented the '11 Preis Herbert award for her promotion of the Alps (THE DAILY)....Orlando Magazine ranked Magic President ALEX MARTINS third on its annual "Most Powerful People in Orlando" list (Magic)....Heat G DWYANE WADE is in Milan this week to attend several fashion shows, and he has had front row seats for DSquared, Versace and Armani (, 6/21)....North Carolina Gov. BEV PERDUE yesterday signed Senate Bill 322 into law, making stock car racing the state's official sport (THE DAILY).