- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 12, 2009

Leonore Annenberg

PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Leonore Annenberg, who as the widow of billionaire publisher Walter Annenberg continued his tradition of philanthropy and patronage of the arts, died Thursday. She was 91.

Annenberg died of natural causes at Eisenhower Medical Center in Rancho Mirage, Calif., said family spokeswoman Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center at the University of Pennsylvania.

Annenberg was chairwoman and president of the Annenberg Foundation, which is based in the Philadelphia suburb of Radnor and has a mission “to advance the public well-being through improved communication.” She had led the institution since her husband’s death in October 2002.

Annenberg was a trustee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and a member of the acquisitions committee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. She also served on the Trustee’s Council of The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

The Annenberg Foundation, which also has offices in Los Angeles, has given more than 8,000 grants to nonprofit groups totaling nearly $4.2 billion since its creation in 1989, Jamieson said.

Annenberg was a trustee emeritus at Penn, where she and her husband founded the Annenberg School for Communication in 1958. In 1993, the couple gave Penn its largest gift ever _ $120 million _ to endow the school and create the Annenberg Public Policy Center.

The Annenbergs also established a sister School for Communication at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

In addition to leading the Annenberg Foundation, Annenberg also headed the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands, which focuses on advancing public understanding of and appreciation for democracy.

Walter Annenberg’s father started the family publishing empire, eventually acquiring The Philadelphia Inquirer. His son greatly expanded the businesses, adding the Philadelphia Daily News and branching out into magazines, including Seventeen and the hugely successful TV Guide. He also added radio and TV stations and amassed a multimillion-dollar art collection.


John Bankert

CANTON, Ohio (AP) _ John Bankert, a former executive director of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, died Thursday. He was 68.

He died after a long illness, the Hall of Fame said.

Bankert worked at the hall for more than four decades, serving as the museum’s executive director from 1996 until he retired in 2005. He played a big role in helping the shrine expand and extend its activities.

Bankert was the only employee to work under the hall’s first three directors. Steve Perry succeeded Bankert as president/executive director in 2006.


Stephen Bernard

BARNSTABLE, Mass. (AP) _ Stephen Bernard, founder of the Cape Cod Potato Chips company and two other snack food brands, died Saturday. He was 61.

Bernard died at Cape Cod Hospital after a battle with pancreatic cancer, said his daughter, Nicole Dawes.

Bernard and his wife, Lynn, founded Cape Cod Potato Chips in 1980 as an offshoot of their health food store despite having almost no knowledge of the snack food industry. After a shaky start, the kettle-cooked chips took off and eventually got national distribution.

Bernard sold the company to Anheuser-Busch in 1985, but reacquired it when the brewer sold its Eagle Snacks division. Lance Inc. bought the company in 1999.

Bernard started Chatham Village Foods gourmet croutons in 1990 and sold it to Lancaster Colony Corp. in 1997.


Alf Pike

NEW YORK (AP) _ Alf Pike, a member of the New York Rangers’ 1940 Stanley Cup championship team who later coached the club, died March 1. He was 91.

Pike, who spent six seasons as a Rangers player and two as coach, died in Calgary, Alberta, according to an obituary the team posted on its Web site.

Pike was one of two surviving members of the 1939-40 team, the last Rangers club to capture the Cup before the 1994 squad won it, according to the team’s Web site.

Pike’s death leaves 95-year-old Clint Smith as the only living member of the 1940 team who spent the entire season with the club.

Pike joined the Rangers organization as a 19-year-old junior player in 1937 and made his NHL debut two years later in Detroit against the Red Wings. As a rookie on the championship team, Pike had eight goals and nine assists in the regular season and three goals and one assist in 12 playoff games.

He played 234 NHL games, all with New York, before he returned home to Winnipeg, Manitoba, to pursue a coaching career.

The forward, nicknamed “The Embalmer” because he had worked at a funeral home during the offseason, scored 42 career regular-season goals and added 77 assists. He had four goals and two assists in 21 playoff games.

He rejoined the organization as coach of the Guelph junior team in the early 1950s, and put together the Memorial Cup-winning team that included forward Andy Bathgate and defenseman Harry Howell.

Pike was promoted to Rangers coach during the 1959-60 season, replacing former teammate Phil Watson, and stayed through the 1960-61 season.

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