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Volume 24 No. 116
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Names In The News

The Rays are among the "heavy hitting supporters" of the Greenlight Pinellas transit tax referendum. Rays President MATT SILVERMAN, when asked whether the Greenlight referendum would factor into the team's decision on where to build a new facility, said, "This is the first step toward a regionwide transit system, and that transit system will benefit Rays fans no matter where we are in the region in the future." The  Rays have "pledged $25,000 to the campaign" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 5/3).

LeGrand was asked to deliver the speech at Rutgers'
commencement, but the offer was retracted
GRAND SNUB: Rutgers Chief of Staff GREG JACKSON asked paralyzed former Rutgers football player ERIC LEGRAND on Saturday night to "deliver the keynote speech at the university's May 18 commencement." But Rutgers AD JULIE HERMANN called LeGrand less than 48 hours later to "inform him that the school had 'decided to go in another direction for political reasons.'" LeGrand: "I wish somebody would have given me a call tonight and explained to me why. Then I can understand, but don't just leave me hanging." Former U.S. Secretary of State CONDOLEEZZA RICE "backed out" of the speaking engagement "amid controversy surrounding her selection" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 5/6).

CHARITY STRIPE: MLB Network’s RON DARLING teamed up with restaurant owner STEVE MCFADDEN and Favale Enterprises LLC President PAUL FAVALE to "produce a new red Syrah wine out of the Donelan vineyard in California." All proceeds from "Darling Reserve" will "go to battle Type 1 diabetes, which afflicts Darling's son JORDAN" (N.Y. POST, 5/6)....The Lions are "investing $150,000 to improve the strip of shops on Agnes Street in West Village" through their philanthropic efforts with Hatch Detroit to "benefit the metro area." The effort is part of the Lions' Living for the City initiative (DETROIT FREE PRESS, 5/6)....The Hurricanes Kids 'N Community Foundation on Friday announced that it "donated $582,000 in cash grants to 32 children’s charitable organizations in the Triangle and North Carolina" during '13-14 (, 5/2)....Golfer MIKE WEIR will "be at the Edmonton Country Club on Sept. 14 and 15 for the Mike Weir Miracle Golf Drive for Kids in support of children’s health care across Canada and to raise awareness and money for the Stollery Children’s Hospital Foundation" (EDMONTON JOURNAL, 5/5)....NFL Jets QB MICHAEL VICK "paid $10,000 to acquire jersey No. 1" from Jets P RYAN QUIGLEY. Quigley "wanted the money donated to charity," so Vick is "donating the money, in Quigley's name," to South Carolina-based Teen Angel and the Boys and Girls Club of N.Y. (, 5/5).

HONORS & AWARDS: Int'l Speedway Corp. Vice Chair & CEO LESA FRANCE KENNEDY was named the '14 Business Exec of the Year by the Orlando Business Journal (, 5/2). The publication also named Golf Channel Exec Producer MOLLY SOLOMON to its '14 Women to Watch (, 5/2)....Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn presented Duke Univ. basketball coach MIKE KRZYZEWSKI, a Chicago native, with the Order of Lincoln medallion during a luncheon Saturday at the Art Institute of Chicago (AP, 5/3)....Baseball HOFer-elect TOM GLAVINE and his wife, CHRIS, were "honored Saturday at the Cure Childhood Cancer fundraiser" (, 5/5).

NAMES: Sources said that Universal Pictures is “nearing a deal to acquiring the rights to an untitled feature project” on Heat F LEBRON JAMES’ high school career. An “aggressive bidding war has seen several studios vying for the film.” Producer RACHEL WINTER and husband TERENCE “will produce” along with James and his business manager MAVERICK CARTER (, 5/5)....TNT’s MARV ALBERT is selling his 3,553-square-foot N.Y. duplex and looking for $16.5M (, 5/5)….Patriots QB TOM BRADY and wife GISELE BUNDCHEN attended last night’s Met Gala (BOSTON GLOBE, 5/6)….Red Sox players WILL MIDDLEBROOKS, JOHN LACKEY, DAVID ORTIZ, JON LESTER, DAVID ROSS, CLAY BUCHHOLZ, JONNY GOMES, MIKE NAPOLI, DUSTIN PEDROIA, SHANE VICTORINO and CRAIG BRESLOW yesterday attended the Pitching In For Kids poker party at the Revere Hotel in Boston (BOSTON HERALD, 5/6)….Bruins G TUUKKA RASK and his girlfriend this weekend welcomed their first child (, 5/5).