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Leasing News is a website that posts information, news, and
entertainment for the commercial alternate financing,
bank, finance and leasing industries


Friday, January 10, 2020

Today's Leasing News Headlines

Monica Harper reacts to
Person of Year award
Business Website Essentials
  FinTech #102 by Alex Vasilakos
Help Wanted
New Hires/Promotions
in the Leasing Business
Fleck Joins Channel Partners Capital
   to Lead New EF Group
The Growing Cost
  of the Royal Family
States where marijuana
  is legal
Fernando's View
  Movie Reviews
Adopt a Dog
The American Association of
Commercial Finance Brokers' Conference
News Briefs---
Boeing emails show workers
   mocking FAA, ridiculing 737 Max’s safety
Taco Bell offers $100,000 salaries
   and paid sick time
Prediction Consensus:
   What the Experts See Coming in 2020

Broker/Funder/Industry Lists | Features (wrilter's columns)
Top Ten Stories Chosen by Readers | Top Stories last six months (Be Careful of Doing Business)
Leasing News Icon for Android Mobile Device

May Have Missed
  Sports Brief----
   California Nuts Brief---
    "Gimme that Wine"
     This Day in History
       Daily Puzzle
         Weather, USA or specific area
          Traffic Live----

######## surrounding the article denotes it is a “press release,” it was not written by Leasing News nor has the information been verified. The source noted. When an article is signed by the writer, it is considered a “byline.” It reflects the opinion and research of the writer.

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Harper reacts to Person of Year award


I wanted to thank you for the recognition in Leasing News today. The outpouring of support from our Board and members has been heartwarming.

I appreciate the opportunity to serve the AACFB and it is gratifying to see this association not just survive for 30 years, but thrive. That is due to a team effort by our Board of Directors, volunteers, members and staff but I am certainly proud to have contributed in any way to that success.

Thank you so much."


Leasing News Person of the Year 2019
Monica Harper, Executive Director
American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers


FinTech #102 by Alex Vasilakos

Business Website Essentials

Telling a business owner to “assume the perspective of your customer” is one of those classic easier said than done problems. It’s not for lack of trying, but owning a business isn’t just a job, it’s a lifestyle. And when you put that level of passion and commitment into something, your unique familiarity with it can be tough to shake.

Yet this is the simplest way to quickly optimize your website. By deeply considering your customer’s perspective and buying journey, we can make decisions that put everything in the right place for the customer to easily and quickly complete their interaction with your business and maybe even leave a nice review to boot.

While it’s absolutely essential to have each of these elements be part of your website, the specifics of their presentation need to be in consideration of your specific customer demographics. Most notably will be the difference between information on an online store, where the priority is to drive sales, versus a traditional brick and mortar business, where the priority is to get them to visit you.

The must haves

Contact information
Much of your web traffic will be coming from customers looking to use your website as a tool to communicate with you. Whether by email, phone or in person, the information that helps them accomplish this needs to be a top priority. Placing an easily found “contact us” link in the top right corner of your website is never a bad move. But if your customers aren’t web savvy, consider putting your address, phone number and hours of operation right on the home page. Additionally, if your business location is a little off the beaten path, consider using a map application on your website to help people better understand your location.

Product information
This is a growing priority for businesses online, as a huge number of searches now happen on mobile with the intent of “in the moment” product research. This means that the more specific information you can have online about what you sell, the better. This may even lead to customer conversions while they are searching competitor’s.

Keeping an up-to-date and functional product catalog online can be a lot of work, but it is most certainly worthy of consideration given the potential value. This is particularly important if your demographic skews younger and more web savvy.

Business description
Give a quick, easy-to-find snapshot of your business and history available for people interested in learning a little more about you. Keep in mind, if people are looking at this part of your website, they are likely close to buying. Make sure you put in a little marketing effort here to help seal the deal. Make it concise but include things like business history, location, relevant achievements and philosophy. It’s also not a bad idea to include customer testimonials if you have them.

Quicklinks to social channels
Social platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are all great tools to help foster a direct line of communication between your business and its biggest fans. Your website should prioritize getting those follows and likes as easy as possible by installing a quick link widget into the footer or header of your website. That way, no matter where you customer goes on the site they are always one click away from connecting with you on Social.

It’s becoming more and more common to see businesses feature active content strategies and it’s easy to see why:

  1. Content is authentic – No one likes being sold to, and content is a great way for a business to build a relationship while leaving the hard sell on the shelf.
  2. Content is made for local – A good content strategy can help a business establish itself as grounded in its local area through authentic stories that are for and about their community.
  3. Content is hyper-targeted – Based on how you answered the first three questions your website, at least a little, is likely targeting customers at a specific part of the sales funnel. Having a fully realized content strategy allows you to add balance to your site. For example, if your site is designed to drive new sales, perhaps the content can be targeted towards customer retention by adding value to those people already in the fold.

Easy content strategy win = how-to videos
These can be extremely effective and easy to produce. Plus, creating how-to videos gives you the platform to demonstrate your expertise. Double-win if it’s related to your business and solutions that you are selling.

Putting it all together with design
When considering design and layout, it’s completely appropriate to look at it as an opportunity to infuse some of your business’s personality into your website’s look and feel. But heed this warning: design is where it’s most critical to consider the customer’s perspective. Too often business owners create a website that works perfectly for themselves while failing to consider how it will work for their customers.

Here are two top level considerations when choosing a design.

Mobile functionality is king
This has to be top of mind at every stage of design. While most modern design templates are mobile functional, it’s worth taking second looks at the ones that do it best. And if you haven’t updated your website since the inception of the smartphone, you might want to think about a redesign.

Keep it simple
You may have noticed that this article really pushes the need for priorities. With that in mind, consider putting only the most crucial information on the home page. Your home page must include easy links to: contact info, product info and business description. After that, it becomes really dependent on your goals and objectives. But when considering the perspective of your customer, oftentimes less is more.

Build for speed
By keeping things simple and prioritizing mobile functionality you are likely also building for speed. But this point is critical enough that it bares repeating. Your site needs to be fast! According to a study from Forrester Consulting 40% of shoppers will wait no longer than 3 seconds of load time before abandoning a retail website. As well, Google uses load time as factor in determining your search rank so a slow site might even be keeping customers from finding you when they look online.

Final thoughts
All in all, it’s a pretty swell time to be building a website for your business. Hosting is cost effective and secure, design templates have never looked nicer, and there is plenty of great content out there to help guide you through the process. But if you are ever curious if your website is serving you well, just follow this tip from Kevin Lao at Google: take out your phone, pull up your site and ask yourself “do you like what you see?” Now go to your closest competitor’s site and ask yourself the same question. Your answer will tell you all you need to know.

Alex Vasilakos
Director of Marketing
The Finance Marketing Group 
Office: 518-591-4645x102 / Fax: 518-677-1071
90 State Street, Suite 1500, Albany, NY 12207

Alex entered advertising and marketing in 2003, right when the industry landscape shifted from traditional print to digital media. In that time, Alex has worked with numerous large accounts in both healthcare and financial services, and has helped small and medium-sized businesses grow and flourish in their respective digital markets. Alex has won countless awards for creative direction and strategy, and is certified by Google Partners in both AdWords and Analytics. Currently, Alex works exclusively with financial services companies, but his depth of knowledge and experience can help design and implement long-reaching strategies for businesses across all industries.

Previous Financial Technology Articles


Help Wanted






New Hires/Promotions in the Leasing Business
and Related Industries


Steve Ayers was hired as VP, Commercial Banking Officer, Branch Manager, Altabank, Murray, Utah. Previously, he was VP, Lease Credit and Syndication Officer, GrowthFunding Equipment Finance, Riverton, Utah. Previously, he was Vice President, Commercial Loan Officer, Bank of Utah (August, 2010 - August, 2012); Vice President, Commercial Officer, AmericanWest Bank (March, 2007 - August, 2010); Credit Analyst/Commercial Loan Officer, Vice President, Zions Bank (August, 2000 - March, 2007). Volunteer: Scout Master/Varsity-Venture Leader, Boy Scouts of America (February, 1997 - Present). Education: Pacific Coast Banking School, University of Washington (2014 - 2016). University of Utah, David Eccles School of Business. Bachelor's Degree, Finance (1998 - 1999). Salt Lake Community College. Associate's degree, Business/Commerce, General (1994 - 1998).

Mark Brandt was hired as Equipment Finance Officer, BancorpSouth, Dalls/Fort Work Area. Previously, he was SVP, Equipment Finance Officer,  Commerce Bank September, 2018 – January, 2020); VP, Equipment Finance (June, 2013 – September, 2018); SVP, GE Capital (February, 2005 - May, 2013), District Manager, Citigroup (November, 2000 - February, 2004), District Manager, Associates Commercial Corporation (February, 1999 -November, 2000), Director, Credit Administration, Associates Leasing (1990-1999), Credit Analyst, Heller Financial-Factoring (1988-1990). The University of Texas at Austin, BBA, Finance (The University of Texas at Austin BBA, Finance (1981 – 1986).

Cindy Fleck, CLFP was rehired as Senior Vice President, Channel Partners Capital, Minnetonka, Minnesota. Previously, she was VP, Head of Global Sales Accommodations Plus International (August, 2019 – December, 2019).  She Joined GreatAmerica Financial Services October, 2010, as National Accounts; promoted November, 2014, Director National Accounts; promoted Vice President of Sales, January, 2016.  Director of Sales, Channel Partners Capital (April, 2009 – June, 2010); Director of Sales, U.S. Bank, October, 1990 – April, 2009). Certifications: Certified Lease and Finance Professional.
Purpose-Driven Sales, LinkedIn.  Volunteer Experience: Confirmation Leader, St. Joseph Catholic Church (September, 2013- May, 2016). Education: Southwest Minnesota State University. BS, Accounting and Business Management (1988 – 2002).

Scott Grady was hired as Director of Business Development, Huntington, Technology Finance, Inc., Bloomfield Hill, Michigan. Previously, he was President, Walnut Hill Capital (June, 2018 – December, 2019); Division President, Crestmark Equipment Finance (October 2014 – February, 2018); Co-Founder/President, TIP Capital (July, 1999 – October, 2014). Education: University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Finance, General (1980 – 1985). Activities and Societies: Beta Kappa Phi Fraternity.

Victor Hernandez III was hired as Area Vice President, Sales, Centra Funding, Plano, Texas.  He is located in the Las Angles Area. Previously, he was Vice President, Partners Capital Group, Santa Ana, California: Outside Transaction Broker, US Capital Partners (2014 - July, 2019); Managing Director, Veranda Finance, LLC (April, 2013 - 2013); Account Executive, CalFirst National Bank (June, 2010 - January, 2012). Volunteer: Beach Clean-Up, Los Angeles Cancer Run. Education: Golden West College, Economics (2006 - 2008).  Santiago Canyon College. Dean's Recommendation, Business/Managerial Economics. Securities Training Corporation. Series 7, 63 licenses (inactive), investments and securities (2002 - 2003).

Martina Rider Porter was promoted to Partner, Hemar, Rousso & Heald, LLP, Encino, California.  She joined the firm July, 1997, as Associate; promoted Senior Counsel, December, 2007. Education: Thomas Jefferson School of Law. J.D., Order of the Coif/Top 10% (1991 -1994). Activities and Societies: Judicial Clerk for the Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District Division One and the San Diego Superior Courts well as for the State of California Office of the Attorney General. Member of Law Review and American Jurisprudence Recipient for Real Property and Contracts.  University of San Diego. Political Science and Government, B.A. Cum Laude. (1987 – 1991).  Activities and Societies: USD Swim Team, Division, Team Captain, MVP and Scholarship recipient as well as record holder in the West Coast Championships.  Member of Pi Sigma Alpha.

Mark Rilely was promoted to East Region Sales Manager at Wells Fargo Equipment, Richmond, Virginia.  He joined the bank January, 2017, Regional Sales Representative at Wells Fargo Vendor Finance.  Previously, he was Vice President, GE Capital (February, 2014 – January, 2017);Executive Sales Officer, Signature Financial (February, 2013 – February, 2014); Regional Vice President, People’s United Equipment Finance Corp. (2010 – 2013); Senior Vice President, Sr. Sales Manager, GE Commercial finance (August, 2008 – June, 2009). She joined Citi as District Sales Manager, Virginia, April, 2002; Promoted January, 2003, Vice President, Sales Manager; promoted Senior Vice President, South Central Regional Manager, October, 2006); VP, Sales, Mid-Atlantic States, De Lage Landen (January, 2001- April, 2002); VP Sales, debis Financial Services (September, 1995 – November, 2000); Sales, ford Motor Credit Company (1900 – 1995).  Education: University of Southern Maine. B.S., Business (1985- 1990).



Channel Partners Capital (CPC) announced the creation of Channel Partners Equipment Finance Group, strengthening its commitment to its equipment finance partners’ success.

CPC, in its 11th year, will leverage its strong balance sheet, core competencies and proven experience to build an equipment finance solution requested by our partners. It will utilize our existing LOS/LMS systems to accommodate equipment finance transactions and has invested over a quarter of a million dollars in a credit risk model that includes over 130,000 records and 250 million data points. Leveraging this new model with our data analytics capabilities and technology platform will allow CPC to deliver a robust, end to end system that gives control of the financing process to the partner; a flexible credit window and processes delivering a fast, easy, and consistent customer experience.

Channel Partners Equipment Finance Group is scheduled to go live in the second quarter of this year.

Fleck Joins Channel Partners Capital to Lead New EF Group

Cindy Fleck, CLFPhas joined CPC as Senior Vice President of the newly established Equipment Finance Group. She will lead this initiative within CPC.

Many in the industry remember Fleck from her nearly 20-year career with Manifest Funding Services (Schwans/U.S. Bank 1990-2009). While at Manifest, she held leadership positions as Credit Manager, Regional Sales Manager, Director of Marketing and Director of Sales. She helped launch Channel Partners in 2009. In 2010 she joined GreatAmerica as a National Sales Manager and more recently served as Vice President of Sales for GreatAmerica’s construction industry niche.

Her success has been built on her commitment to servicing her customers.

“We’re very happy she has chosen to rejoin CPC and look forward to her leadership in expanding our partner relationships through the development and introduction of the Channel Partners Equipment Finance Group,” the company said.

“To all of our Valued Partners: CPC has been very intentional in developing competencies in equipment finance, risk modeling, data analytics, and technology that we can deploy in the small business lending marketplace. The Channel Partners Equipment Finance Group will leverage these competencies to create a unique funding source for our partners. We will continue to embrace the values CPC was built on, protecting and enhancing your relationship with your customers. At Channel Partners Capital, Your customer is always Your customer.”



Taxpayers in the United Kingdom are paying more money than ever for the Royal Family. The latest Sovereign Grant accounts were published early last week and they show that the monarchy cost £67 million ($86 million) in 2018-19 - a 41 percent increase on the previous financial year. One interesting aspect of the accounts is that Frogmore Cottage cost £2.4 million of public money to renovate. The official residence of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the cottage was given to the couple as a gift by the Queen.

In a nutshell, the complicated system of funding the monarchy works when the UK government makes a payment called the Sovereign Grant to the Royal Household every year. Its value is determined by how uch money the Crown Estate real estate portfolio has brought in. That total added up to £82 million this year with a sizeable chunk of that money added to cover renovation work at Buckingham Palace. Of that total, the monarchy spent £67 million on official duties including travel as well as other costs such as staff and property maintenance. Maintenance and the renovation of Buckingham Palace are the key reasons the total is so high this year.

Buckingham Palace's electrical, heating and plumbing systems all date from the 1950s and are in urgent need of replacement. As part of 10-year renovation plan, wiring and pipework will be replaced while asbestos will be removed from the building. New elevators will also be installed to assist disabled visitors. The complexity and duration of the work will ensure that the next financial year will also be expensive for taxpayers with the Sovereign Grant expected to rise to £85.7 million

By Niall McCarthy, Statista



Fernando's View
By Fernando F. Croce

A pair of engrossing real-life portraits (“Richard Jewell,” “A Hidden Life”) make for a fine humanistic double-bill at the box-office, while new DVD releases offer one of last year’s very best (“Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood”), a dynamic caper (“Hustlers”), and a sparkling Hollywood classic (“Holiday”).

In theaters:

Richard Jewell (Warner Bros.): Always fascinated by the clash between private and public persona, Clint Eastwood’s films as a director offer a piercing study of the myths and fragility of American heroism. So it goes with his latest, set in 1996 and focusing on the real-life tale of small-time security guard Richard Jewell (Paul Walter Hauser, in a nervy performance). During the Atlanta Summer Olympics, he spots a mysterious package and helps evacuate the area before it explodes. Seen at first as a hero by the media, he’s soon under suspicion as a prime suspect. As scorn is heaped on him, Jewell and his mother (Kathy Bates) struggle in a search for truth and respect. Tackling the story with lucidity and empathy, Eastwood delivers a compelling account of an ordinary man’s triumph.

A Hidden Life (Fox Searchlight Pictures): After a string of ventures set in modern times, lyrical master Terence Malick (“The Tree of Life”) returns to the past with this shattering ode to spiritual resilience, set in Germany during World War II. Telling the real-life story of Franz Jägerstätter (August Diehl), a religious Austrian farmer arrested for refusing to fight under Hitler’s rule, the movie envisions a natural paradise darkened by man’s worst impulses, and the ensuing pain and sacrifice of an unsung hero. While his wife Franziska (Valerie Pachner) tries in vain to deal with the justice system, Franz lingers in jail, learning about his fellow prisoners and preparing himself for the worst. Gracefully gliding from joy to sorrow, Malick’s work has the beauty and purity of a silent film.

Nextflix: Alternating effortlessly from brutal to gruff to avuncular, Danny Aiello (1933-2019) delighted audiences with decades of character-actor duty. So check out Netflix for his finest roles, which include “The Purple Rose of Cairo” (1985), “Moonstruck” (1987), “Do the Right Thing” (1989), and “Once Around” (1991).


Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood (Sony): Controversial director Quentin Tarantino (“Inglourious Basterds”) delivers another exhilarating experiment in alternate cinematic history with this sprawling look at Los Angeles in 1969. At the center of this multi-character canvas is the friendship between Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio), an aging actor facing the prospect of his own fading stardom, and Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt), his laconic stand-in. Elsewhere, Rick’s neighbor turns out to be up-and-coming starlet Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) and a cult ran by a certain Charles Manson looms menacingly on the margins. Focusing more on character and atmosphere than on plot, Tarantino’s loving recreation of a turning point in American culture is by turns dreamy and brutal but consistently, brilliantly multilayered. With a cast that also includes Al Pacino, Bruce Dern and Margaret Qualley, this is one of last year’s very best releases.

Hustlers (Six Entertainment): Wall Street and strip-clubs collide in this wickedly entertaining caper, based on a true story and set during the 2008 recession. With the economy falling, Manhattan dancer Destiny (Constance Wu) tries to remain afloat while being exploited by clients and bosses alike. Things change when she befriends the seasoned Ramona (Jennifer Lopez in a lush, leonine performance), who specializes in turning the tables on high-rollers. What begins as a modest scheme grows into a full operation—the more money they pull in, however, the heavier the risk of their plan collapsing. Confidently directed by Lorene Scafaria, the film takes a sharp look at the dynamics of power, as well as the bond between exploited women. Julia Stiles, Madeline Brewer, and Cardi B. round out the dynamic cast.

Holiday (Criterion): A prime example of classic Hollywood magic, this 1938 adaptation of Phillip Barry’s stage comedy sparkles in every aspect, both in front of and behind the camera. Cary Grant had one of his finest early roles as Johnny Case, a self-made young man about to get married to a wealthy banker’s daughter, Julia (Doris Nolan). He starts to rethink his options after meeting his bride’s brother, Junior (Lew Ayres), and especially her sister Linda (Katherine Hepburn), a vivacious nonconformist who finds a kindred spirit in Johnny. But can these two outspoken adventurers resist the lure of a safe, moneyed life? A master of cinematic elegance, director George Cukor keeps things from getting stagy with a quick and lively touch, aided by a sterling cast that includes Edward Everett Horton and Jean Dixon.


German Shepherd
Contra Costa County, CA Adopt-a-Dog

Dog - Shepherd, German
Sex : Male
Age : 3Y / 7M / 3W
Location: Foster Home

He's tall, dark, and handsome and looking for his forever home. Joey is a happy and playful guy who would make a good addition to any family. He LOVES people and is very sweet and friendly. He's happy to play catch, take a long walk, or curl up by your feet. He is interactive and affectionate with people but we think he'd prefer to be the only dog. We are not sure how he'd do with cats. Joey would make a great running partner as well as cuddle buddy!


The American Association of Commercial Finance Brokers'
2020 Annual Conference

Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, May 6th – 8th for this must-attend event packed with education, networking and (let's face it) a lot of fun!

AACFB was founded by brokers and we know every dollar counts, which is why we pride ourselves on keeping registration fees very affordable for brokerages of all sizes and funders alike.

AACFB attendees can take advantage of a special rate of $170 per night, plus a $39 resort fee but we encourage you to book early. The cut-off for this rate is April 13, 2020 or until the block is full.

As of 12/06/2019

1st Commercial Credit, LLC
4 Hour Funding
360 Equipment Finance
Ascentium Capital, LLC
Bankers Capital
Bryn Mawr Funding
C.H. Brown Co., LLC
CLFP Foundation
Financial Pacific Leasing, Inc.
Fundation Group, LLC
Global Financial & Leasing Services
LenderKiosk by Tamarack
Navitas Credit Corp
NCMIC/Professional Solutions
North Mill Equipment Finance, LLC
Northwind Financial
Orange Commercial Credit
Pawnee Leasing Corporation
Providence Equipment Finance, a Division of Providence Bank & Trust

Program and Sign in to Register:


News Briefs----

Boeing emails show workers mocking FAA, ridiculing 737 Max’s safety

Taco Bell offers $100,000 salaries and paid sick time

Prediction Consensus: What the Experts See Coming in 2020



You May Have Missed---

Why time management is ruining our lives


Go Niners!

 “You got to want it to win it and we want it more. You got to want it to win it and we want it more. Go Niners.”

“We're headed for the top, We're solid as a rock, We can't be stopped, Because we're HOT HOT HOT!!!”

“Clap your hands, And stomp your feet, And jam to the rhythm of the Grizzly beat, It goes (stomp, clap, stomp stomp, clap, stomp clap), Do it “

“Its time, to cheer, Seahawks are here, Seahawks, Seahawks, Yeah, This is our year!!!”






What Each Remaining Playoff QB Says About the NFL

Storm could dump 8-10 inches of snow on Green Bay Saturday ahead of Seahawks-Packers playoff game


California Nuts Briefs---

One of the largest mobile home parks in state could be shut
in 2022 - 723 homes/4 in 10 lived her more than 10 years

California bill would ban flavored tobacco sales,
    going further than feds



“Gimme that Wine”

Courtwatch: Merryvale Vineyards Sues Marketing and
   Sales Partner after Losing "Thousands of Accounts"

France vows to retaliate against latest Trump tariffs
   on wine and cheese

Beaujolais Icon Georges Duboeuf Has Passed Away At 86

Free Wine App

Wine Prices by vintage

US/International Wine Events

Leasing News Wine & Spirits Page


This Day in History

     1776 - Thomas Paine published "Common Sense." The pamphlet, 50 pages, according to, contained the first demand for independence for the American colonies, sold 100,000 copies the first three months and up to 500,000 before the year-end. No other book in the U.S. has had such a quick or large sale relative to population. The pamphlet was highly influential in swinging the tide of the popular opinion toward a clean break with the mother country. It is said the pamphlet influenced the authors of the Declaration of Independence who followed its objectives very closely.
Paine was born in England in 1737 and worked as a corset maker in his teens. He also worked as a sailor and schoolteacher before becoming a prominent pamphleteer. In 1774, Paine arrived in Philadelphia and came to support American independence. His 47-page pamphlet sold some 500,000 copies and had a powerful influence on American opinion. Paine served in the U.S. Army and worked for the Committee of Foreign Affairs before returning to Europe in 1787. Back in England, he continued writing pamphlets in support of revolution. He released The Rights of Man, supporting the French revolution in 1791-2, in answer to Edmund Burke's famous “Reflections on the Revolution in France” (1790). His sentiments were highly unpopular with the British government, so he fled to France but was later arrested for his political opinions. He returned to the United States in 1802 and died in New York in 1809.
    1800 - Savannah, GA, received a foot and a half of snow, and ten inches blanketed Charleston, SC. It was the heaviest snowfall of record for the immediate Coastal Plain of the southeastern U.S.
    1847 - Gen. Kearny and Commodore Stockton recaptured Los Angeles from California rebels.
    1860 - Pemberton Mill, in Lawrence, Massachusetts, suddenly collapses, trapping 900 workers, mostly Irish women. Fire breaks out, adding to the terror and destruction. 116 women are seriously hurt, while 88 are killed. The fire inquest reveals the cast-iron pillars used to support construction were too weak for the brick walls and heavy machinery.
    1861 - Florida became the third state to secede from the Union to join the Confederacy.
    1864 - George Washington Carver, scientist and discoverer of over 300 products from the peanut and sweet potato, may have been born near what is now Diamond, MO.  Carver was apparently born a slave and we don't know even the year of his birth; however, it seems to have been between 1858 and 1865.

    1880 - American Emperor Norton I, self-proclaimed, is buried today at Masonic Cemetery in San Francisco. The funeral cortege was two miles long, 10,000-30,000 people turned out to pay homage and celebrate.
    1887 - Robinson Jeffers (d. 1962), American poet and playwright, born at Pittsburgh, PA.
    1897 - Birthday of guitarist Sam Chatman (d. 1983), Bolton, MS.
    1904 - Birthday of Ray Bolger, born Raymond Wallace Bulcao (d. 1987), Dorchester, MA. Dancer, actor in “The Wizard of Oz,” he also had a television show that ran for two seasons on ABC.
    1908 - Birthday of actor Paul Henried (d. 1992), Trieste, Austria. He once estimated that he had played in or directed more than 300 feature or made-for-TV films. Though a staunch anti-Nazi, his early film roles included a number of German roles, including “Goodbye Mr. Chips” and “Night Train.” He eventually moved away from the German stereotype in such films as “Of Human Bondage” and “The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.” His film career cut short by the anti-Communist blacklist in Hollywood during the 1940s but Henried found a second calling as a director, directing more than 80 episodes of TV’s “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.”  He is perhaps best known however for his role as Victor Laslo in "Casablanca." He is best known to me as I dated his daughter in high school.
    [Wiki DOB: Dec, 14]1910 - Birthday of sax player Budd Johnson, Dallas, TX,,449700,00.html?artist=Budd+Johnson
    1911 - The temperature dropped 47 degrees in 15 minutes at Rapid City, SD.
    1920 - Due to the Treaty of Versailles, the League of Nations came into existence. Fifty nations entered into a covenant designed to avoid war. The US never joined the League of Nations, which dissolved April 18, 1946.
    1925 - Birthday of jazz drummer Max Roach (d. 2007), Pasquotank County, NC.
    1927 - Blues singer Johnnie Ray (d. 1990) born, The Dalles, Oregon.   Highly popular for most of the 1950s, Ray, who was partially deaf, has been cited by critics as a major precursor to what would become rock and roll, for his jazz and blues-influenced music and his animated stage personality.  Ray was "a sensation in the 1950s, the heart-wrenching vocal delivery of 'Cry' ... influenced many acts including Elvis and was the prime target for teen hysteria in the pre-Presley days."  Ray's dramatic stage performances and melancholic songs have been credited by music historians as precursory to later performers.  Tony Bennett called Ray the "father of rock and roll" and historians have noted him as a pioneering figure in the development of the genre.  “Cry” was a No.1 hit on the Billboard charts in 1951 and one side of one of the biggest two-sided hits, as the flip side, “The Little White Cloud That Cried,” reached No.2 on the Billboard chart.
    1927 - Birthday of sax player Allan Eager (d. 2003), New York.
    1931 - Birthday of Marlene Sanders (d. 2015), Shaker Heights, OH.  Pioneering American woman broadcast journalist, she is the first woman to anchor a network evening news broadcast. She became a vice president and director of TV documentaries.
    1935 - Singer Eddy Clearwater (d. 2018), Macon Mississippi.,+Eddy.html
    1935 - Ronnie Hawkins, a pioneer of rock 'n' roll in Canada, was born in Huntsville, Arkansas, two days after Elvis.  Hawkins has been a father figure to many of Canada's leading rock musicians and the graduates of his bands include the groups Crowbar and The Band, as well as Dom Troiano, King Biscuit Boy and David Clayton-Thomas.  Rompin' Ronnie Hawkins began touring the Ontario night club circuit in 1958 with his band the Hawks. In 1959, he scored on the US charts with "Mary Lou" and "40 Days." Hawkins has remained in Canada since then, leaving his Ontario base only occasionally, as he did in 1976 to appear at The Band's farewell concert in San Francisco.
    1937 - Birthday of Gisele Mackenzie (d. 2003), Winnipeg, Manitoba.  Canadian singer, star of “Your Hit Parade” TV show during the 1950s.
    1938 - Willie McCovey (d. 2018), Baseball Hall of Fame San Francisco first baseman, born in Mobile, AL.  “Stretch” played over a 22-year career between 1959 and 1980, 19 seasons with the Giants and three more for the Padres and A’s. A fearsome left-handed hitter, he was a six-time All-Star, three-time home run champion, MVP, and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1986 in his first year of eligibility, only the 16th man so honored.  McCovey was known as a dead-pull, line drive hitter, causing some teams to employ a shift against him long before it became as commonplace as today.  Seventh on baseball's all-time home run list when he retired, McCovey was called "the scariest hitter in baseball" by pitcher Bob Gibson, seconded by Reggie Jackson.  McCovey lashed 521 home runs, 231 launched in Candlestick Park, the most there by any player. One, on September 16, 1966, was described as the longest ever hit in that stadium. 
    1939 - Actor-singer Sal Mineo (d. 1975) was born in New York City. Better known for his acting than his singing, he did manage a top-ten record in 1957, "Start Movin'." On February 12th, 1975, Mineo was found murdered in Los Angeles.
    1943 - Singer Jim Croce (d. 1973) was born in Philadelphia. His narrative songs, such as "Bad Bad Leroy Brown" and "You Don't Mess Around With Jim," were extremely popular in the early '70s. Like Otis Redding, Croce's greatest popularity came after his death. And like Redding, Croce was killed in a plane crash.
    1943 - FOURNIER, WILLIAM G., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company M, 35th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place and date: Mount Austen, Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, 10 January 1943. Entered service at: Winterport, Maine. Birth: Norwich, Conn. G.O. No.: 28, 5 June 1943. Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. As leader of a machinegun section charged with the protection of other battalion units, his group was attacked by a superior number of Japanese, his gunner killed, his assistant gunner wounded, and an adjoining gun crew put out of action. Ordered to withdraw from this hazardous position, Sgt. Fournier refused to retire but rushed forward to the idle gun and, with the aid of another soldier who joined him, held up the machinegun by the tripod to increase its field action. They opened fire and inflicted heavy casualties upon the enemy. While so engaged both these gallant soldiers were killed, but their sturdy defensive was a decisive factor in the following success of the attacking battalion.
    1943 - HALL, LEWIS, Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Technician Fifth Grade, U.S. Army, Company M, 35th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place and date: Mount Austen, Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands, 10 January 1943. Entered service at: Obetz, Rural Station 7, Columbus, Ohio. Born: 1895, Bloom, Ohio. G.O. No.: 28, 5 June 1943. Citation: For gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. As leader of a machinegun squad charged with the protection of other battalion units, his group was attacked by a superior number of Japanese, his gunner killed, his assistant gunner wounded, and an adjoining gun crew put out of action. Ordered to withdraw from his hazardous position, he refused to retire but rushed forward to the idle gun and with the aid of another soldier who joined him and held up the machinegun by the tripod to increase its field of action he opened fire and inflicted heavy casualties upon the enemy. While so engaged both these gallant soldiers were killed, but their sturdy defense was a decisive factor in the following success of the attacking battalion.
    1945 - BERTOLDO, VITO R., Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Master Sergeant, U.S. Army, Company A, 242d Infantry, 42d Infantry Division. Place and date: Hatten, France, 9-10 January 1945. Entered service at: Decatur, 111. Born: 1 December 1916, Decatur, 111. G.O. No.: 5, 10 January 1946. Citation: He fought with extreme gallantry while guarding 2 command posts against the assault of powerful infantry and armored forces which had overrun the battalion's main line of resistance. On the close approach of enemy soldiers, he left the protection of the building he defended and set up his gun in the street, there to remain for almost 12 hours driving back attacks while in full view of his adversaries and completely exposed to 88-mm., machinegun and small-arms fire. He moved back inside the command post, strapped his machinegun to a table and covered the main approach to the building by firing through a window, remaining steadfast even in the face of 88-mm. fire from tanks only 75 yards away. One shell blasted him across the room, but he returned to his weapon. When 2 enemy personnel carriers led by a tank moved toward his position, he calmly waited for the troops to dismount and then, with the tank firing directly at him, leaned out of the window and mowed down the entire group of more than 20 Germans. Some time later, removal of the command post to another building was ordered. M/Sgt. Bertoldo voluntarily remained behind, covering the withdrawal of his comrades and maintaining his stand all night. In the morning he carried his machinegun to an adjacent building used as the command post of another battalion and began a day-long defense of that position. He broke up a heavy attack, launched by a self-propelled 88-mm. gun covered by a tank and about 15 infantrymen. Soon afterward another 88-mm. weapon moved up to within a few feet of his position, and, placing the muzzle of its gun almost inside the building, fired into the room, knocking him down and seriously wounding others. An American bazooka team set the German weapon afire, and M/Sgt. Bertoldo went back to his machinegun dazed as he was and killed several of the hostile troops as they attempted to withdraw. It was decided to evacuate the command post under the cover of darkness, but before the plan could be put into operation the enemy began an intensive assault supported by fire from their tanks and heavy guns. Disregarding the devastating barrage, he remained at his post and hurled white phosphorous grenades into the advancing enemy troops until they broke and retreated. A tank less than 50 yards away fired at his stronghold, destroyed the machinegun and blew him across the room again but he once more returned to the bitter fight and, with a rifle, single-handedly covered the withdrawal of his fellow soldiers when the post was finally abandoned. With inspiring bravery and intrepidity M/Sgt. Bertoldo withstood the attack of vastly superior forces for more than 48 hours without rest or relief, time after time escaping death only by the slightest margin while killing at least 40 hostile soldiers and wounding many more during his grim battle against the enemy hordes.
    1945 - Erskine Hawkins records “Tippin’ In.” Victor 20-1639
    1945 - Birthday of singer Rod Stewart, London, England.
    1946 - On the 26th anniversary of the establishment of the unsuccessful League of Nations, delegates from 51 nations met at London, England, for the first meeting of the UN General Assembly.
    1946 - Top Hits
Symphony - The Freddy Martin Orchestra (vocal: Clyde Rogers)
It Might as Well Be Spring - The Sammy Kaye Orchestra (vocal: Billy Williams)
I Can’t Begin to Tell You - Bing Crosby with the Carmen Cavallaro Orchestra
White Cross on Okinawa - Bob Wills.
    1947 - U.S. Senate Chaplain Peter Marshall prayed: 'May we resolve, God helping us, to be part of the answer, and not part of the problem.'
    1949 - The Radio Corporation of America, known as RCA, announced the new 7-inch, 45 rpm phonograph record. Known familiarly as the 45, the record with the big hole in the middle, the invention would forever change the pop music business. RCA manufactured a record player that would only play 45s, that had a fat spindle to made "stacking wax" easy and automatic.
    1949 - Snow was reported at San Diego, CA, for the first and only time since 1882. Snow was noted even on some of the beaches in parts of the Los Angeles metropolitan area. Burbank reported 4.7 inches, and Long Beach and Laguna Beach received one inch of snow.
    1952 - Cecil B. DeMille's circus extravaganza, “The Greatest Show on Earth,” opened in the United States. Starring Betty Hutton, Cornel Wilde, Charlton Heston, and Dorothy Lamour, the film did well at the box office, and won Oscars for Best Picture and Best Writing. Famous clown Emmett Kelly appeared in a cameo.
    1953 - Perry Como's "Don't Let the Stars Get in Your Eyes" hits #1.
    1953 – Singer Pat Benatar was born Patricia Mae Andrzejewski in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.
    1954 - Top Hits
Oh! My Pa-Pa - Eddie Fisher
Changing Partners - Patti Page
The Gang that Sang ‘Heart of My Heart’ - The Four Aces
Bimbo - Jim Reeves
    1956 - Elvis Presley made his first recordings as an RCA Victor artist. At sessions in Nashville, Tennessee, Elvis recorded "Heartbreak Hotel," "I Was the One," "I’m Counting On You," "I Got a Woman" and "Money Honey." By April 11, 1956, "Heartbreak Hotel" was #1, staying there for eight weeks. It was #1 on both the pop and rhythm and blues charts, as well at placing fifth on the country music list.
    1956 - The Supreme Court unanimously strikes down two Alabama laws requiring racial segregation on public buses.
    1958 - "Great Balls of Fire" by Jerry Lee Lewis became the number-one song in the US. Later in the year, many radio stations began banning his records because of his marriage to his 13-year-old cousin.
    1960 - To this date, Marty Robbins' "El Paso," held the record for the longest #1 song. The song was 5 minutes and 19 seconds long, sending radio station Program Directors into fits; because the average length at that time was around 2 minutes. Formats at stations didn’t allow for records much longer than that. For example, 2-minute record, 3 minutes for commercials, 60 seconds for promo, 2-minute record, etc. DJs quickly got used to the longer length, realizing it gave them time, to think of what to say next.  “El Paso” is #55 on the Rolling Stone All Time Greatest Country & Western list and its reign as the longest #1 song has been overtaken by Don McLean’s anthem, “American Pie,” at 8:42.
    1962 - Top Hits
The Lion Sleeps Tonight - The Tokens
The Twist - Chubby Checker
Peppermint Twist - Joey Dee & The Starliters
Walk on By - Leroy Van Dyke
    1967 - The National Educational Television (NET), New York City, interconnected 70 of its 100 independent affiliated educational stations for a live broadcast and analysis of President Lyndon Baines Johnson’s State of the Union message. Regularly scheduled noncommercial network broadcasting began on November 5, 1967, with the premiere of the Public Broadcast laboratory over the NET network. Until around this time television news went from 15 minutes to 30 minutes formats.
The only long standing news programs were “60 Minutes” and “Meet the Press.”
    1967 - Lester Garfield Maddox, a restaurant owner and avowed racist with an axe to grind who made national headlines for his opposition to desegregation, is sworn in as governor of Georgia. Maddox, a high school dropout, achieved notoriety in 1964 when he used violence to drive African Americans from his Pickrick Restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia. In defiance of federal civil rights legislation calling for desegregation of restaurants and other public places, he passed out ax handles to white customers at his eatery to prevent its integration. Later in the year, he closed the establishment rather than be forced to serve African Americans.
    1967 - President Johnson, in his annual State of the Union message to Congress, asks for enactment of a 6 percent surcharge on personal and corporate income taxes to help support the Vietnam War for two years, or "for as long as the unusual expenditures associated with our efforts continue." Congress delayed for almost a year, but eventually passed the surcharge. The U.S. expenditure in Vietnam for fiscal year 1967 would be $21 billion.
    1968 - SASSER, CLARENCE EUGENE, Medal of Honor
Rank and organization: Specialist Fifth Class (then Pfc.), U.S. Army, Headquarters Company, 3d Battalion, 60th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division. Place and date: Ding Tuong Province, Republic of Vietnam, 10 January 1968. Entered service at: Houston, Tex. Born: 12 September 1947, Chenango, Tex. Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp5c. Sasser distinguished himself while assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3d Battalion. He was serving as a medical aide man with Company A, 3d Battalion, on a reconnaissance in force operation. His company was making an air assault when suddenly it was taken under heavy small arms, recoilless rifle, machinegun and rocket fire from well fortified enemy positions on 3 sides of the landing zone. During the first few minutes, over 30 casualties were sustained. Without hesitation, Sp5c. Sasser ran across an open rice paddy through a hail of fire to assist the wounded. After helping 1 man to safety, was painfully wounded in the left shoulder by fragments of an exploding rocket. Refusing medical attention, he ran through a barrage of rocket and automatic weapons fire to aid casualties of the initial attack and, after giving them urgently needed treatment, continued to search for other wounded. Despite 2 additional wounds immobilizing his legs, he dragged himself through the mud toward another soldier 100 meters away. Although in agonizing pain and faint from loss of blood, Sp5c. Sasser reached the man, treated him, and proceeded on to encourage another group of soldiers to crawl 200 meters to relative safety. There he attended their wounds for 5 hours until they were evacuated. Sp5c. Sasser's extraordinary heroism is in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
    1968 - Aretha Franklin earns her fourth gold single with "Chain of Fools." The record goes on to win the 1968 Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a female.
    1969 - Elvis Presley’s, "Don’t Cry Daddy," entered the pop music charts' Top 10. The song contains a duet with country artist Ronnie Milsap.
    1969 - After 147 years in publication, the final issue of "The Saturday Evening Post" was produced, although years later it would return in limited publication. Norman Rockwell’s art was popular in the "Post."
    1970 - Top Hits
Raindrop Keep Fallin’ on My Head - B.J. Thomas
Someday We’ll Be Together - Diana Ross & The Supremes
I Want You Back - The Jackson 5
Baby, (Baby I Know You’re a Lady) - David Houston
    1972 - The Milwaukee Bucks defeated the Los Angeles Lakers, 120—104, to snap the longest winning streak in major professional sports at 33 games. Milwaukee’s Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, later to play for the Lakers, scored 39 points to hand Los Angeles its first loss since Oct 31, 1971.
    1975 - The "Storm of the Century" hit Minnesota. A severe blizzard moved northward across the state producing up to two feet of snow. High winds drove wind chill readings to 80 degrees below zero, and at Duluth, the barometric pressure dipped to 28.55 inches. The storm, which claimed 35 lives, occurred on the 102nd anniversary of the infamous "Pioneer Blizzard" in Minnesota.
    1975 - Al Green earns his 12th gold record for the album "Al Green Explores Your Mind." Twelve days later, he earns his 13th gold record for the album's hit single, "Sha-La-La (Make Me Happy)."
    1978 - Top Hits
How Deep is Your Love - Bee Gees
Baby Come Back - Player
You’re in My Heart (The Final Acclaim) - Rod Stewart
Take This Job and Shove It - Johnny Paycheck
    1980 - Composer John Williams succeeded the late Arthur Fiedler as the conductor of the Boston Pops.
    1981 - John Lennon and Yoko Ono's "Double Fantasy" goes platinum, a little over a month after Lennon's assassination. The album is Number One for eight weeks.
    1982 - San Fran­cisco 49ers wide receiver Dwight Clark jumped high in the Candlestick Park end zone to snare a touchdown pass from Joe Montana with 58 seconds left in the game as the 49ers defeated the Dallas Cow­boys, 28-27, in the NFC championship game. “The Catch,” as the play came to be called, propelled San Fran­cisco to Super Bowl XVI, which they won, 26-21, over the Cincinnati Bengals.  Thus began the NFL’s “Team of the 1980s” that would become the first NFL team to win 5 Super Bowls.
    1982 - Cincinnati defeats San Diego 27-7 in the coldest game in NFL history. The temperature at kickoff of the AFC Championship Game is -9, with a wind-chill factor of -59.
    1982 - The temperature at O'Hare Airport in Chicago plunged to an all-time record of 26 degrees below zero and high winds drove the wind chill reading to 77 degrees below zero. The temperature in Downtown Chicago reached 23 degrees below zero. A week later a second arctic surge sent the temperature plunging back down to 25 degrees below zero
    1984 - Cyndi Lauper becomes the first female recording artist since 1967 to be nominated for five Grammy Awards, for her debut album, She's So Unusual. Lauper was nominated for Album of the Year, Best New Artist, Best Pop Vocal Performance (Female), Record of the Year, and Song of the Year. She won the Best New Artist award. Lauper became the first artist in rock history to achieve four Top 10 singles from a debut album, including "Girls Just Want to Have Fun," "She Bop," and her first No. 1 single, "Time After Time."
    1986 - Top Hits
Say You, Say Me - Lionel Richie
Party All the Time - Eddie Murphy
That’s What Friends are For - Dionne & Friends
Morning Desire - Kenny Rogers
    1987 - Madonna's video about a pregnant teenager, "Papa Don't Preach," won the top award on the first World Music Video Awards. The three-hour program was co-produced by Canada's MuchMusic Network and Europe's Sky Channel. It was telecast live via satellite to five continents.
    1989 - The first documented January tornado of record in Utah struck the south part of Sandy. Asphalt shingles were driven one half inch into a fence. According to The Weather Channel, clear skies, light winds, and up to 24 inches of snow cover, allowed the temperature to plunge to 45 degrees below zero at Roseau, MN, and to -43 degrees at Warroad, MN. The afternoon high at Grand Forks, ND was 16 degrees below zero.
    1990 - Strong southerly winds ahead of a Pacific cold front helped temperatures in the central U.S. soar as much as 50 degrees during the day. A total of fifty cities in the central U.S. reported record high temperatures for the date, with afternoon highs in the 70s reported as far north as Nebraska and eastern Colorado. Highs of 53 at Devils Lake, ND, 76 at Grand Island, NE, 73 at Lincoln, NE, and 73 at North Platte, NE, established records for the month of January.
    1991 - Clint Black became the 66th member of the Grand Ole Opry during the taping of the show's 65th anniversary celebration.
    1993 - The greatest single snowstorm ever at Salt Lake City, UT came to an end. The four-day storm dumped 23.3 inches of snow on the city breaking the previous record of 21.6 inches set from March 12th to the 15th, 1944.
    1994 - WordPerfect announced it would begin charging for telephone support. Previously, the company had not only provided free support but also picked up the tab for the phone call through a toll-free line. The move reflected the growing battle for revenue in the software business, as lower prices hurt profit margins. It also was a poor business judgment as it drove more users toward Microsoft Word.
    1995 - "Late Late Show" with Tom Snyder premieres on CBS at 12:30 AM
    1995 - Top Hits
On Bended Knee - Boyz II Men
Creep - TLC
Another Night - Real McCoy
Always - Bon Jovi
    1996 - A clipper-type system produced more snow over the mid-Atlantic and northeast. On the 9th, 3-6 inches of snow fell in the Washington, DC-Baltimore, MD area, still digging out from the blizzard just two days earlier. The clipper intensified over the waters just east of New England on the 10th and produced up to 9 inches of snow over northeastern Massachusetts and Cape Cod. The 5.4 inches at Boston raised its snow cover to 32 inches, its greatest depth ever recorded. The 2.6 inches at Philadelphia brought its monthly snow total to 33.7 inches, its snowiest month on record. This was the third snowstorm to affect the region in a week.
    1997 - Arnold Palmer, perhaps the most charismatic golfer of all time, was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Palmer underwent surgery at the Mayo Clinic on Jan 15, and on Mar 20 he returned to golf, carding an 81 in the first round of the Bay Hill Invita­tional. He also became a spokesman for the prevention of prostate cancer.
    1997 - James Brown, the Godfather of Soul, gets his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
    2000 - America Online, “the company that brought the Internet to the masses,” announced that it had agreed to buy Time Warner, the largest traditional media company in the U.S., for $165 billion.
    2000 - Top Hits
What A Girl Wants - Christina Aguilera
Smooth - Santana Featuring Rob Thomas
Back At One - Brian McKnight
I Knew I Loved You - Savage Garden
    2013 – A near-Earth asteroid, called 99942 Apophis, passed close to Earth.  Astronomers in Europe estimated it to be larger than originally thought.



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