Thursday, October 31, 2013

Sid Yudain, Creator of "Roll Call"

Sid Yudain, 90, Dies; Created Congress’s Community Newspaper

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Sid Yudain, who created what he called a community newspaper — Roll Call — for what he called “the most important community in the world, probably” — Congress — died last Sunday at his home in Arlington, Va. He was 90.
United Press International
Sid Yudain in 1980.

The cause was cancer, said his wife, Lael.
Mr. Yudain had scant experience as a professional journalist — he had been a reporter in Hollywood — when he arrived in Washington in 1951 to work as a press secretary for Representative Albert P. Morano, a freshman Republican from his home state, Connecticut. He quickly recognized, however, that senators, representatives and the people who worked for them had no convenient way of learning about one another. At a start-up cost of $90, he began publishing a slender weekly out of his Congressional office in 1955.
Roll Call quickly became a small-town bible, a chronicle of the benign activities of the locals, with need-to-know tidbits about births and deaths, retirements and weddings, personnel changes to Congressional staffs and pictures of elected officials on vacation proudly displaying the fish they had caught.
It covered more serious things as well — filibusters and changes in Senate rules and the manipulations behind committee assignments, for example — but rarely legislation, at least in the early years.
When Lyndon B. Johnson, then a senator from Texas, had a heart attack less than a month after Roll Call made its debut, he wrote in it about his recovery. Vice President Richard M. Nixon wrote an obituary for a favorite doorman.
Mr. Yudain described Roll Call as a hybrid: part local newspaper, part trade paper, part movie fan magazine, part New Yorker.
“One of the things we had that we got some criticism for was, we ran a Hill pinup every week,” Mr. Yudain recalled in a 2011 interview with Roll Call. “Regardless of the criticism, congressmen loved it. It was the first thing they looked at in the paper. A big change from looking at The Congressional Record and all the blah blah blah of speeches.”
Sidney Lawrence Yudain was born in New Canaan, Conn., on May 6, 1923, the seventh of eight children born to Morris Yudain and the former Berta Jaffe, who emigrated as newlyweds from Russia in 1907. His father owned a clothing store and later a real estate brokerage. The family had a journalistic bent.
“For some reason or other, we were all spirited kids, but we didn’t have real fights,” Mr. Yudain recalled in an interview with Roll Call in 2005. “When we got mad at each other, we published these newspapers. We had a little Remington portable typewriter — I guess it was one of the first ones that came out, and we all learned how to use it, even when we were really small — and we published these newspapers, writing editorials against each other instead of staging fists or rocks or something.”
Mr. Yudain, who never went to college, joined the Army after graduating from New Canaan High School. During World War II, he was stationed in Malibu, Calif., where he established a base newspaper. After the war he remained in Southern California, working as a Hollywood columnist for a Connecticut newspaper and writing freelance articles about movies and movie stars for fan magazines.
Mr. Yudain was a bachelor until age 50. He met Lael Bairstow, an aide to Senator William B. Saxbe, an Ohio Republican, in 1972 on a junket to Spain. They married in 1973. In addition to her, Mr. Yudain is survived by a son, Raymond; a daughter, Rachel Kuchinad; and three grandchildren.
Roll Call was published with a skeleton staff, and Mr. Yudain wrote much of the copy himself. His column “Sid-Bits” was the progenitor of the current, more corporate Roll Call gossip blog, “Heard on the Hill.”
In 1986, Mr. Yudain sold Roll Call to Arthur Levitt, then the chairman of the American Stock Exchange. Since 1992, the paper, with more robust coverage of legislative policy, has been owned by the Economist Group, which bought CQ (a k a Congressional Quarterly) as a companion publication in 2009.
Roll Call’s print edition is published four times a week and has a circulation of more than 22,000. The company says its Web site,, has 1.5 million unique visitors a month.
The neighborliness that Mr. Yudain encouraged, both in his work and in his personal dealings, had numerous side effects. The pianist and political humorist Mark Russell told The Washington Post he was discovered by Mr. Yudain when he was working at a Washington strip club. Mr. Yudain got him a job in a hotel lounge frequented by politicians and aides.
“He saw the Hill as a friendly neighborhood, and Roll Call was the neighborhood paper,” Mr. Russell told The Post.
But Mr. Yudain began to change his mind as the weather in Congress grew stormier and the members more careerist.
“During the 1950s and 1960s, it was an honor to serve your country,” he said to The New York Times in 1985. “Today, most of these people who come here are starting their careers. It’s a steppingstone to another job.”
Previously, he said, legislators “got by on their own — on their wits, their brains, their ability to charm an audience, mesmerize a rally.
“There wasn’t any TV, and they didn’t have a lot of staff people to tell them what to say,” he said. “They had to be raconteurs, thinkers, statesmen, showmen. Now a person only has to comb his hair the right way and say what someone has written for them.”

Allan Stanley, Toronto Maple Leafs Star

Allan Stanley, 87, Dies; Helped Maple Leafs Win 4 N.H.L. Titles

Associated Press
Allan Stanley, third from left, celebrates with his father, William, and teammates after the Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Chicago Black Hawks to win the Stanley Cup in 1962.

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Allan Stanley, a Hall of Fame defenseman who helped the Toronto Maple Leafs win four Stanley Cups in the 1960s, died on Oct. 18 in Bobcaygeon, Ontario. He was 87.

His death was confirmed by Monk Funeral Home in Bobcaygeon. Stanley, who stood taller than six feet and weighed about 180 pounds, was nicknamed Snowshoes for his lumbering skating style. But he was an anchor on defense against Hall of Fame shooters like Ted Lindsay, Stan Mikita and Bobby Hull.
In a 21-season career, Stanley played with the Rangers, the Chicago Blackhawks (then known as the Black Hawks), the Boston Bruins, the Maple Leafs and the Philadelphia Flyers, recording 100 goals and 333 assists in 1,244 regular-season games.
Stanley played 10 seasons with Toronto, including the team’s dynasty years in the 1960s, when they won three straight titles, from the 1961-62 through 1963-64 seasons. He and his teammate Tim Horton were central to one of the National Hockey League’s most lauded defensive units, which included Carl Brewer, Bobby Baun and, starting in 1965, Marcel Pronovost.
“Allan was one of the best ‘angle’ defensemen,” Johnny Bower, a former Maple Leafs goalie and teammate of Stanley’s, said in an online feature for the Hockey Hall of Fame. “If Gordie Howe was coming down the wing, he would steer him to such a bad angle that there was no way that Howe could score a goal on you.”
During the sixth and final game of the 1967 Stanley Cup finals against the heavily favored Montreal Canadiens, Stanley made a critical contribution at center in a face-off. In the final minute, Toronto was leading, 2-1, and the Canadiens had pulled their goalie, allowing six of their players to try to score.
Toronto Coach Punch Imlach called on Stanley to take on the Montreal captain, Jean Beliveau, when the puck was dropped near the Maple Leafs’ goal. Stanley anticipated when the puck would hit the ice and slammed into Beliveau. The puck bounced off their skates to Toronto center Red Kelly, who passed to Bob Pulford. Pulford fed the puck to George Armstrong, who hit Montreal’s empty goal with a 75-foot shot, sealing Toronto’s victory. The team has not won the Stanley Cup since.
Herbert Allan Stanley was born in Timmins, Ontario, on March 1, 1926. He was mentored by his uncle, the Hall of Fame player Barney Stanley. (No records indicate that the Stanley family is related to Sir Frederick Arthur Stanley, the former governor general of Canada and the namesake of the Stanley Cup.)
Stanley made his N.H.L. debut with the Rangers during the 1948-49 season. He was the team captain for a time, but during the 1953-54 season he endured so much jeering from the Madison Square Garden crowd that he was demoted to the Western Hockey League. He returned to the Rangers for part of the next season before he was traded to Chicago.
Stanley scored a career-high 10 goals in his first season with Chicago, but he was sent to Boston in 1956. He sustained a knee injury in the 1956-57 season and missed the playoffs; Boston lost to Montreal in the finals. The Bruins gave up on Stanley after losing to the Canadiens in the finals the next year as well.
“They said my legs were gone, but they just didn’t realize that’s the way I skated,” Stanley told The Toronto Star in 1987.
In 1958, he was traded to Toronto, where he played for a decade.
He retired after the 1968-69 season with the Flyers. Returning to Ontario, he and his wife, Barbara, started one of the first hockey camps for youths. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1981.
He has no immediate survivors.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hal Needham, Stuntman and Director

Hal Needham, Stuntman and Director of Action Films, Dies at 82

Universal Studio, via Getty Images
Hal Needham, left, with the actors Burt Reynolds, center, and Jerry Reed on the set of “Smokey and the Bandit” in 1977.
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Hal Needham, a veteran Hollywood stuntman who later embarked on a less risky career as a director of action movies including“Smokey and the Bandit” and “The Cannonball Run,” both of which starred his friend Burt Reynolds, died on Friday at his home in Los Angeles. He was 82.
Jim Ruymen/Reuters
Mr. Needham accepting a lifetime achievement award.

The death was confirmed by his manager, Laura Lizer, who said he had recently learned he had cancer.  
During the course of his career, Mr. Needham said in a speech at the Academy Awards in 2012, he broke 56 bones, including his back twice. He punctured a lung, had a shoulder replaced and knocked out several teeth. He invented several new stunt methods and devices — among them the introduction of air bags for breaking falls, prompted by watching pole-vaulters — as “a way to save myself some trips to the hospital,” he said.
“Hal Needham was a great stunt coordinator, director, and an icon,” Arnold Schwarzenegger wrote on Twitter on Friday. “I’m still grateful he took a chance with me in ‘The Villain,’ ” he said, of the 1979 film that Mr. Needham directed. “I’ll miss him.”
Mr. Needham was born in 1931 and, as he told it at the Academy Awards in 2012, raised “way back in the hills of Arkansas during the Great Depression.” His father was a sharecropper. As a boy, Mr. Needham fished and hunted squirrels with a rifle. He later moved with his family to St. Louis.
After his discharge in the 1950s from the United States Army as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division, he began a career that spanned hundreds of movies and television shows across five decades.
In a 2011 interview on the NPR program “Fresh Air,” Mr. Needham said he moved to Southern California after being discharged and went back to pruning trees, what he had done before entering the service. He broke his ankle and, after he recuperated, a fellow former paratrooper got him a stunt job on a television show. His next assignment involved aerial stunts, some upside down, on “The Spirit of St. Louis,” which starred James Stewart.
At first he appeared primarily in television and movie westerns, including “Gunsmoke”and “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance,” leaping to and from galloping horses. On one occasion, he said later, he landed so hard on the roof of a stagecoach that he crashed through it. Mr. Needham was also involved in stunt work on “Little Big Man” and“Chinatown,” and he coordinated the stunts for “Have Gun — Will Travel,” starring Richard Boone.
In the 1970s, Mr. Needham turned his attention to car stunts, he said in the NPR interview in 2011, and collaborated often with Mr. Reynolds, whom he had met when they both worked in television. “Smokey and the Bandit” was Mr. Needham’s directorial debut in 1977. He went on to direct 19 other movies. 
He won a scientific and engineering Oscar in 1986 for the development of a camera car. Later he was given a governor’s award by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. “You’re looking at the luckiest man alive,” Mr. Needham said in his acceptance speech. 
His memoir, “Stuntman,” was published in 2011.
Mr. Needham is survived by his wife, Ellyn; two sons, Danny and David; seven grandchildren; and 14 great-grandchildren.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Johannes Van Der Kemp, Missionary in South Africa

Johannes Theodorus van der Kemp (b. May 17, 1747, Rotterdam – d. December 15, 1811, Cape Town) was a military officer, doctor and philosopher who became a missionary in South Africa.

The second son of Cornelius van der Kemp, Rotterdam's leading reformed clergyman, and Anna Maria van Teylingen, he attended the Latin schools of Rotterdam and Dordrecht. He subsequently enrolled at the University of Leiden in 1763 where he studied medicine, but when his elder brother Didericus was appointed as professor of church history he abandoned his studies.

Van der Kemp joined the dragoon guards and fathered an illegitimate child, Johanna (‘Antje’), whom he brought up himself. In 1778 he fell in love with Christina (‘Stijntje’) Frank (d. 1791). He lived with her for a year before being reprimanded by the Prince of Orange on this irregular state of affairs. As a result he both married Stijntje, on 29 May 1779, and quit the army.

Returning to his medical studies again, this time in Edinburgh, he completed his Medical Doctorate within two years. He also prepared for publication a treatise in Latin on cosmology, entitled Parmenides which was published in 1781. He returned to the Netherlands, where he practiced as a doctor first in Middelburg and then near Dordrecht. On June 27, 1791, his wife and daughter Antje were drowned in a yachting accident from which he only just escaped. As a result of this incident he experienced an emotional conversion back to the reformed Christianity of his family.

Van der Kemp served as a medical officer during the revolutionary campaigns in Flanders and then as hospital superintendent at Zwijndrecht, near Dordrecht. Whilst there in 1797 he came to hear of the formation of the London Missionary Society.

After making contact with the London Missionary Society, Van der Kemp helped found the Dutch version, Nederlandsche Zendinggenootschap. He was ordained in London in November 1798 and began recruiting men for the society. He sailed from London in December 1798 as one of the first three agents sent by the society to the Cape colony in South Africa, arriving in March 1799.

Whilst there in 1799, Van der Kemp published the first work in book-form in South Africa, which was an 8-page translation, into Dutch, of the London Missionary Society's letter that he brought out to the inhabitants of the Cape. Printed by V.A. Schoonberg most likely on J.C. Ritters press.

Once in South Africa, after working at Gaika's Kraal near King William's Town he journeyed beyond the eastern frontier of the colony to work among the Xhosa under Chief Ngqika. From the Xhosa he received the name Jank' hanna (‘the bald man’). War between Cape Colony and the Xhosa soon drove him back and from 1801 onwards he worked exclusively within the colony, mainly with dispossessed Khoikhoi. In 1803, he established a mission settlement for vagrant Khoikhoi at Bethelsdorp where local farmers accused him of harboring lawless elements. He countered with a list of alleged ill-treatment of the Khoikhoi by local farmers, but the evidence proved unsatisfactory and the farmers were acquitted.

On April 7, 1806, Van der Kemp married Sara Janse, a freed slave 45 years his junior, and had four children with her. This situation and his attitudes caused great opposition from within the colony, and he was for a time ordered by the government to leave Bethelsdorp.

Armed with a background in European and classical philology, he pioneered in the study of Xhosa and Khoikhoi languages.

Van der Kemp was recalled to Cape Town by the Governor in 1811 and died soon afterwards.

Sarah Millin, one of the most popular English-language novelists in South Africa during her lifetime wrote The Burning Man about the life of van der Kemp. The life of Johannes van der Kemp during his mission in Bethelsdorp is included in the novel Praying Mantis by André Brink.

Paul Reichmann, World Financial Center Developer

Paul Reichmann, Who Helped Develop the World Financial Center, Dies at 83

Peter Redman/Financial Post
Paul Reichmann, in 1990, made and lost billions of dollars.

Paul Reichmann, the Canadian real estate developer who made and lost billions of dollars while transforming the skylines of Toronto, New York and London, died on Friday in Toronto. He was 83.

Ed Quinn
In 1980, Mr. Reichmann's firm won the right to build the World Financial Center in Manhattan.
His death was announced by a spokeswoman for ReichmannHauer Capital Partners, an investment firm.
Mr. Reichmann and his brothers, Albert and Ralph, led Olympia & York, their family’s real estate development firm, which counted among its greatest projects the World Financial Center in Lower Manhattan and Canary Wharf in London’s East End. At their apex in 1990, the Reichmanns held about 8 percent of New York City’s commercial office space, more than twice as much as their closest rival, the Rockefellers.
In all, Olympia & York owned 40 major office towers in a dozen cities on both sides of the Atlantic and controlled $20 billion in assets. The net personal worth of the Reichmanns reached $10 billion, making them at one point among the 10 wealthiest families in the world. But in 1992, they ran out of cash while building Canary Wharf, and their real estate business quickly collapsed.
Paul Reichmann, a tall, soft-spoken man who dressed in black suits, white shirts and dark ties, was clearly the family business strategist and chief decision-maker. He and his family were lavish contributors, mostly to Orthodox Jewish causes; they donated up to $50 million a year to yeshivas, synagogues and hospitals around the world.
Despite his austere demeanor, Mr. Reichmann took enormous business risks. He bet that each new development project could exceed the size of the previous one and still attract enough tenants to produce a windfall.
“For Paul, it is like being a gambler, like being a heroin addict — he cannot stop,” Andrew Sarlos, a prominent Toronto investment banker and Reichmann family friend, said in a 1988 article in Maclean’s, the Canadian weekly.
Mr. Reichmann scoffed at that sort of criticism. “You don’t get the returns if you don’t take the risk,” he said in an interview with Institutional Investor magazine in 2000.
For years, Mr. Reichmann’s track record was so impressive that his creditors did not seem to mind his high-roller approach. His sense of timing in the notoriously cyclical real estate market seemed infallible, and he was viewed as a master negotiator with an uncanny understanding of financing techniques.
But the Reichmann empire crumbled in 1992. The immediate cause was the Canary Wharf project in London. With real estate prices plunging around the world, other major Reichmann properties were also in the red, and the family’s stock market investments soured.
Crushed under debts of more than $20 billion, Olympia & York went bankrupt. The Reichmanns were left with a net worth of less than $100 million — one of the most astonishing financial collapses in history.
Paul Reichmann blamed his own overconfidence. “The fact that I had never been wrong created character flaws that caused me to make mistakes,” he said in 1997.
Mr. Reichmann and his family partly rebuilt their fortune. In a personal triumph, he recovered control of Canary Wharf in 1995, as a minority partner and chairman of an investment group that included George Soros and Laurence Tisch, and then pushed ahead with the completion of the project. He retired in 2005 after an alliance of developers led by Morgan Stanley acquired Canary Wharf.
The strains of commerce and religious orthodoxy were often inseparable in the family’s ventures. For example, Olympia & York closed its construction sites on the Jewish Sabbath, paying overtime for Sunday labor, and during the Jewish religious holidays, as well as Christian ones.
At the height of his business career, Mr. Reichmann sometimes spoke wistfully of the Talmudic studies and religious school building projects he undertook as a young man.
“I think that what I did in those years was a greater achievement than what I’ve done since,” he was quoted as saying in a 1996 biography of his family, “The Reichmanns,” by Anthony Bianco. Paul Reichmann was born in Vienna on Sept. 27, 1930, the fifth of six siblings. His parents, Samuel and Rene, were Orthodox Jews who had moved from rural Hungary to Vienna, where they owned a prosperous egg export business. But Nazi Germany’s annexation of Austria in 1938 forced the family to flee to Paris.
Two years later, when the Nazis overran France, the Reichmanns fled to Tangier, Morocco, where Samuel Reichmann became a successful currency trader.

Paul Reichmann, Who Helped Develop the World Financial Center, Dies at 83

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When anti-Jewish riots broke out across the Middle East after the 1956 Arab-Israeli War, the Reichmanns uprooted themselves again, this time going to Canada. The family settled in North York, a suburb of Toronto, where Samuel and his sons, Paul, Albert and Ralph, started a small company producing tiles and other building material, which they called Olympia Tile. In 1958, it became the springboard for Olympia & York, which would erect close to 100 buildings in the Toronto area over the next 15 years.
The most notable of these projects was First Canadian Place, a 72-story office tower in downtown Toronto that was the country’s tallest building. Completed in 1973 after only 16 months and using vast quantities of magnificent white marble, the tower gained the Reichmanns a reputation for quality projects delivered at an accelerated pace.
The success of First Canadian Place also encouraged Paul Reichmann to venture into the United States real estate market. His first foray involved the purchase of eight prime Manhattan office buildings from the Uris Corporation in 1977 for $325 million. At the time, New York City seemed on the verge of bankruptcy, and its office vacancy rates were soaring. But a decade later, the same properties were valued around $3 billion.
By then, Mr. Reichmann and his brothers were heavily involved in their most heralded project, the World Financial Center. In 1980, the still relatively unknown Olympia & York won out over a dozen other developers, most of them local firms, to build six million square feet of office and retail space near Battery Park on land reclaimed from the Hudson River.
The project’s design, by the Argentine-born architect Cesar Pelli, featured four office towers ranging up to 51 stories, on top of a huge base devoted to luxury stores. The centerpiece of the complex, the Winter Garden, was a 130-foot-high, glass-vaulted pavilion landscaped with palms. When the design for the World Financial Center was unveiled in 1981, it was hailed as “the finest group of skyscrapers since Rockefeller Center,” by Paul Goldberger, The New York Times’s architecture critic.
By the end of the 1980s, the Reichmanns were the seventh-richest family in the world, according to Fortune magazine. But they still lived relatively modestly in the same upper-middle-class homes they had built for themselves in their Toronto suburb a generation before.
Paul Reichmann’s wife, Lea, occasionally complained that her husband was too involved in his business and not spending enough time with his children, Barry, Henry, Vivian, Rachel and Libby. But he was home every Sabbath and holiday, joining his family and neighbors as they walked to the nearby temple for services.
In 1988, Mr. Reichmann took the greatest gamble of his life by committing Olympia & York to build Canary Wharf. The completed project was supposed to have 24 buildings and 12.5 million square feet of office space at an estimated construction cost of $8 billion.
Despite generous subsidies and rent cutbacks, only a fraction of the commercial space was occupied. By late 1991, Canary Wharf was paralyzed by a lack of further financing. And early the next year, Olympia & York announced that it had run out of cash.
Many of the family’s other real estate holdings were also in trouble because of high office vacancy rates in a number of North American cities. The Reichmanns filed for bankruptcy protection in London, Toronto and New York simultaneously.
Only three years later, Mr. Reichmann regained the helm at Canary Wharf, which finally gained nearly full occupancy in 2000 thanks to a booming real estate market in London. By 2000, the Reichmann family’s net worth reached $1 billion. But in an interview with Institutional Investor that year, Mr. Reichmann said his business accomplishments had never given him the sense of fulfillment he experienced as a youthful religious social worker and teacher in North Africa. But “what could have been is a silly way to look at things,” he said. “You are what you are.”

Paul Reichmann

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Paul Reichmann
Born(1930-09-27)27 September 1930
Vienna, Austria
Died25 October 2013(2013-10-25) (aged 83)
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Known forfounder of Olympia & York
RelativesReichmann family
Paul Reichmann (Hebrew: משה יוסף רייכמן‎‎; 27 September 1930 – 25 October 2013) was a Canadian businessman and member of the Reichmann family. He is best known for his leadership of the Olympia & York a real estate development company.

Formative years[edit]

Reichmann was born in Vienna in 1930[1] to Samuel Reichmann, a wealthy egg merchant and his wife René. His parents were Orthodox Jews from a small town in Hungary, but his father had risen to prominence in Vienna as a successful merchant.
The family escaped the Nazi occupation of Austria by sheer chance, as they happened to leave the country on the day of Anschluss, to visit Paul's grandfather in Hungary who had suffered a stroke. Abandoning their lives in Vienna, they made their way from Hungary to Paris, where they settled. The Reichmann family fled when France fell to the Germans, eventually making their way to the neutral city of Tangier.
In Tangier, the family prospered as Samuel became a major currency trader.[2] After the war Paul left home to study religion first in Britain and then in Israel, and became a Rabbi. In 1953 he returned to Morocco to become a shirt retailer, and that same year he married Lea Feldman.

Rising success[edit]

Three years later Paul left Morocco to join his elder brother Edward in Canada. Edward had established Olympia Flooring and Tile, a successful flooring and tile company in Montreal. Paul, along with his brothers Albert and Ralph, moved to Toronto to set up a branch of the flooring and tile company in that city.
Unsatisfied with the local builders, Paul Reichmann decided the company would construct its own warehouses and offices. Soon the company was building such facilities for others. In 1964, Olympia and York was founded as a separate building and property development firm.
The firm was soon profitable, and expanded rapidly. It also accepted difficult projects, including the construction of First Canadian Place, Canada's tallest building, in 1976. The company expanded to New York and Tokyo and by the mid-1980s it was the largest developer in the world, and the Reichmanns were one of the world's richest families.
His success had little impact on Paul Reichmann's lifestyle. He remained very private and unwilling to talk to the press. He retained his strong religious views, and used much of his fortune to support his religion. In Toronto he built a number of schools and synagogues which became the centre of a thriving Orthodox community. Shunning most luxuries, his one personal indulgence was collecting rare and valuable Jewish texts. Pursuant to Jewish law, all of Olympia and York's construction projects halted on the Jewish Sabbath and all holy days.


The company ran into severe trouble in the early 1990s. It was due in part to a general decline in the world economy, but the company was truly brought low by the Canary Wharf project. It was the world's largest property development, but remained half empty. Reichmann had taken the project as a major gamble. He had been impressed by Margaret Thatcher's reforms and obtained a personal promise from her that she would help the project, most importantly by extending the London Underground to reach it.
In Canada, Reichmann's once sterling reputation also began to suffer. In 1985 the company had bought Gulf Canada in a deal that included some $300 million in tax breaks. Many Canadians were infuriated that a massive corporation had been given such a lucrative deal. Toronto Life magazine also published a highly critical article on the Reichmanns. The family took offence at allegations that Samuel Reichmann had aided the Nazis with illegal smuggling operations during the Second World War. The family sued the magazine for an unprecedented $109 million. They were successful, and Toronto Life published a full retraction, but their heavy fisted response soured Toronto Life magazine to the Reichmanns[citation needed].
In 1992, as Olympia and York collapsed under some $20 billion in debt, Paul Reichmann lost most of his family fortune.

Recovery and retirement[edit]

Despite these setbacks, Reichmann successfully rebuilt a small portion of his empire. This included setting up a partnership with George Soros, Lawrence Tisch and Michael Price along with investors such as Saudi Prince Al-Waleed to purchase a controlling stake in the Canary Wharf from the banks that made the original construction loans to Reichmann and which had taken control of the development. Reichmann became Chairman of Canary Wharf again and remained so until 2004.
During 2004 a takeover battle began for the Canary Wharf Group in which Reichmann eventually sided with Canadian developer Brascan to attempt a purchase of the company. During this process he resigned his position on the Board. In March, 2005 a consortium of investors led by Morgan Stanley under the banner of Songbird Estates purchased Canary Wharf Group, and Reichmann was therefore no longer involved with Canary Wharf on a day to day basis. Reichmann, at the time 75, announced that he intended to retire from business and sold many of his property holdings.

Recent activity[edit]

In September 2006, Reichmann announced that he was bored with retirement and that he would be setting up a new $4 billion fund, based in Toronto, with offices in Great Britain and the Netherlands.


Paul Reichmann died at the age of 83 in Toronto on 25 October 2013.[3][4][1]

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Maxine Powell, Motown's Maven of Style

Maxine Powell, Motown’s Maven of Style, Dies at 98

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Maxine Powell, the Miss Manners of Motown, who as the director of the label’s in-house finishing school in the 1960s was considered in no small part responsible for its early success, died on Monday in Southfield, Mich. She was 98.
Tony Ding/Associated Press
Maxine Powell in 2009. “I teach class,” she said of her record-label work, “and class will turn the heads of kings and queens.”
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Her death was announced by the Motown Museum in Detroit.
In a statement on Monday, Berry Gordy Jr., the founder of Motown Records, said that Mrs. Powell “brought something to Motown that no other record company had,” adding of his artists, “She was tough, but when she got through with them, they were poised, professional and very thankful.”
At Motown, Mrs. Powell presided over what is believed to have been the only finishing school at an American record label at any time. Her disciples — young, scrappy and untried — included many future titans of American popular music, whom she polished with the finesse of a diamond cutter.
“Mrs. Powell was always a lady of grace, elegance and style, and we did our best to emulate her,” Martha Reeves, the former lead singer of Martha and the Vandellas, said in a telephone interview on Tuesday. “I don’t think I would have been successful at all without her training.”
Among her other pupils were the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson. Diana Ross, the Supremes’ former lead singer, has described Mrs. Powell as “the person who taught me everything I know.”
Officially, Mrs. Powell was a director of Motown’s artist development department. But in reality she was equal parts headmistress, psychotherapist, iron-willed favorite aunt and temperate bartender.
Her combined ministrations, she told her charges, were meant to equip them for precisely two contingencies: invitations to the White House and invitations to Buckingham Palace.
“I teach class,” Mrs. Powell was fond of saying. “And class will turn the heads of kings and queens.”
Though Mrs. Powell was associated with the label for just five years, from 1964 to 1969, her presence was felt long beyond.
“Every asset of my personality has been by her influence,” said Ms. Reeves, who became a lifelong friend. “Even to the end, she was making sure that I was standing with posture and exuberant grace.”
At Motown, singers were required to take instruction from Mrs. Powell for two hours a day whenever they were in Detroit. Her curriculum covered deportment onstage and off: how to speak impeccably and stand erect, how to glide instead of merely walking, how to sit in a limousine with the ankles crossed just so.
There was also individualized instruction. Ms. Ross, for instance, favored exorbitantly long false eyelashes. That did not sit well with Mrs. Powell, who installed shorter ones.
Mr. Gaye liked to sing with his eyes closed. That did not sit well with Mrs. Powell either, and she insisted he keep them open.
She once came upon the Supremes practicing a dance called the shake. That emphatically did not sit well with Mrs. Powell, as she recalled in a 1986 interview with People magazine:
“ ‘You are protruding the buttocks,’ ” she admonished them. “ ‘Whenever you do a naughty step like the shake, add some class to it. Instead of shaking and acting tough, you should roll your buttocks under and keep smiling all the time.’ Then I showed them. They were shocked that I could do it and at how much better it looked my way.”
Though Mrs. Powell was barely more than five feet tall, the world seemed scarcely large enough to contain her. By the time she arrived at Motown, she had been a stage actress, model and manicurist; a charm-school director; and the founder of the what is widely described as Detroit’s first modeling agency for African-Americans.
Maxine Blair was born on May 30, 1915, in Texarkana, Tex., and reared by an aunt in Chicago. She began acting as a teenager, eventually appearing with the Negro Drama League, a black repertory company there.
She later worked as a model and trained as a manicurist and cosmetologist at Madam C. J. Walker’s School of Beauty Culture, founded by the celebrated black entrepreneur.
After moving to Detroit in the 1940s, Mrs. Powell founded the Maxine Powell Finishing and Modeling School in 1951, which placed the first black models in campaigns for the city’s major automakers.
One of Mrs. Powell’s models was Gwen Gordy, Berry’s sister. She told her brother that Mrs. Powell was just the person to groom his young stars.
Mr. Gordy demurred at first, seeing no need. But his sister prevailed, and before long Mrs. Powell had closed her agency and moved to Motown, where she made herself indispensable.
She often accompanied the artists on tour, serving as sounding board, chaperon and restrained mixologist.
“After a performance, I made all the drinks,” Mrs. Powell told People. “Melvin Franklin of the Temptations said you had to have five of my drinks before you ever felt anything.”
Mrs. Powell’s marriage to James Powell ended in divorce. No immediate family members survive.
After leaving Motown, Mrs. Powell taught personal development for many years at Wayne County Community College in Detroit. She later worked part time as an aide to Ms. Reeves when she served on the Detroit City Council from 2005 to 2009.
One of the most noteworthy things about Mrs. Powell’s tenure at Motown was her prescience. One day, she recalled in the interview with People, she taught her students how to sit on stools.
The Supremes objected.
“We don’t go to bars, why should we sit on a stool?” they said.
“A lady with class can sit on a garbage pail and look good,” Mrs. Powell replied.
Shortly afterward, the Supremes appeared on “The Mike Douglas Show,” and lo and behold, there were stools there.
The Supremes sat, and by Mrs. Powell’s lights, they sat well.