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Posts Tagged ‘Martin Dunn’

Matt Lauer, Harold Ford Jr. & Neil Sedaka

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— DIANE CLEHANE

If the scene at Michael’s today is any indication, summer vacations are so 2010. The place was full of magazine honchos (the cafeteria at Hearst must have been empty), media mavens (Does Jason Binn ever sleep?) and bold face names who were all working the room like nobody’s business. I knew this group meant business when the chatter rose to such a decibel-splitting level that I could barely hear what my lunch dates were saying. So forget about playing hooky this week because the weather is so good, get to work on making that next big deal happen!

When I arrived a little before noon today I got a chance to catch up with Harold Ford Jr. I asked the former congressman, now MSNBC analyst, what he thought of the contentious negotiations between President Obama and the Republicans on raising the debt ceiling. Will the two sides reach an agreement before the August deadline? “They’ll strike an 11th hour deal,” Harold told me. “They have to.” Harold thinks the president is “acting responsibly” while the freshman Republicans are “playing with fire.” His solution: “If I were advising the president, I’d say get out on a ten-city tour and talk to people and explain (in his plan) there would be no new taxes until the end of 2012.” When it comes to raising taxes, Harold espouses raising the tax threshold for individuals and households. Eat your peas, indeed.

I was joined today by Redbook’s editor-in-chief Jill Herzig and Hearst PR director Alexandra Carlin and we had a lively conversation that ranged from raising kids to keeping up (literally) with the Kardashians. Jill just celebrated her first anniversary at Redbook in May and has made some savvy tweaks to Hearst’s magazine for smart, style-conscious women who juggle work and family. The biggest change? A shift in tone from “commiserating to celebrating” life in all its glorious, modern day chaos. “We love it when we hear about that from our cover celebrities. Brooke Burke was very honest about it recently. She said balance doesn’t exist. It’s just life.” In the new August issue, Jada Pinkett Smith gives some very frank — and emotional — answers about raising a family of budding superstars, her “excruciating” choices and how she wouldn’t have it any other way. Who wouldn’t want to go home to Will Smith?

Speaking of celebs, Jill gave me the rundown on which cover gals have scored on the newsstand this year. The big winners were the multiple covers featuring reality/competition show queens Bethenny Frankel, Allison Sweeney and Padma Lakshmi, and the issue featuring country star Miranda Lambert right before she married Blake Shelton. The top seller? The May issue which featured the women of the Kardashian clan clad all in white. Jill tells me ‘momager’ Kris earned her complete respect by rounding up her daughters and arriving early for a 6 am call to the set. “They were incredibly professional and all genuinely seemed to enjoy each other. They were just lovely.”

Here’s a rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Niche Media’s Jason Binn (Loved the seersucker suit!) presiding over a table of young bucks.

2. Producer Francine LeFrak and some well-heeled pals.

3. Cosmo‘s publisher Donna Lagani and Hollywoodlife.com’s Bonnie Fuller. A little birdie told me that Bonnie and Fidelis Global’s Gerry Byrne moved their monthly ‘Influencer’ luncheon from Tuesday to Wednesday this month because Jay Penske, whose company Mail.com Media owns Hollywoodlife.com, was in town and didn’t want to miss out on all the fun. Just in case you were wondering who joined the terrific trio here’s the list: social swan and Vanity Fair scribe Amy Fine Collins , designer Stacey Bendet, Ogilvy Entertainment president Doug Scott, Maybelline’s Deborah Marquardt, ION Media Networks’ CEO Brandon Burgess, Razorfish VP of media Julie Weitzner, Charlie Corwin, founder of Original Media,  publicist Matt Hiltzik and Aly Racer, president on PMC.

4. Producer Freddie Gershorn.

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Mort Zuckerman May Be Ready to Replace Kevin Convey at the New York Daily News

Time for some newsroom gossip!

We hear from Gawker that the troubled New York Daily News owner Mort Zuckerman may already be looking for a replacement for editor Kevin Convey, who only came on board last July after prior Daily News editor Martin Dunn abruptly left.

We also hear from Gawker that Daily News isn’t making money at the moment, that Zuckerman wasn’t happy about Convey putting Donald Trump as “Sideshow Don” on the cover (though we at FishbowlNY were thrilled!) and that the Daily News is so cheap that Adam Lisberg, the Daily News‘s City Hall bureau chief, quit because of it.

Yes, that’s a full serving of Daily News-related, anonymously-sourced gossip. We will refrain from commenting on the above, only to reiterate: we thought the “Sideshow Don” cover was a stroke of genius.

Lunch: Dishing With The Usual Suspects

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— DIANE CLEHANE

The regulars were out in force today at Michael’s as media mavens, moguls and social types were deep in conversation around the jam-packed dining room. Everyone, it seems, had plenty to talk about, including the terrible news of Natasha Richardson‘s skiing accident. “I can’t believe it,” one diner told me. “It was sickening to see the coverage last night — especially the premature reports of her death.” The consensus at Michael’s was that there was a lot of irresponsible reporting that seemed more interested in being first than being right. Today, thank goodness, the reports seem more measured and everyone is awaiting an official word from the family. I had the opportunity to meet the talented Ms. Richardson at Michael’s on several occasions last year and she was always utterly gracious and lovely. My thoughts go out to her and her family.

Today I was lunching with Lisa Linden of Linden, Alschuler & Kaplan, Inc. public relations. A tireless gal who is as nice as she is busy. Lisa — who started the firm with Steve Alschuler 16 years ago (Lloyd Kaplan joined three years later)– reports that despite the gloomy economic climate, business is on solid ground. It’s no wonder. The principals bring a wealth of experience to their clients, having toiled in a host of positions including stints in city and state government (Lisa and Steve both served at various times as press secretary to Senator Roy Goodman and later worked together at Rubenstein; Lloyd was chief of staff at City Hall during the financial crisis in the early 70s). Lisa was also a consultant to the Clinton/Gore ’96 campaign. These days, the firm counts top tier real estate companies like Brookfield and The Plaza as clients, as well as an impressive list of “major” law firms, fashion brands (Sigrid Olsen) and nonprofits including City Meals on Wheels and The Broadway League.

During these perilous economic times, one of the things that keeps Lisa and her staff so busy is crisis management: “We’re living in unprecedented times,” Lisa told me. “There is no industry that has not been hit with a crisis.” And, counsels this public relations powerhouse, even those companies that are not dealing with disaster per se should think twice about scaling back their public relations efforts. “This is not the time to pull back,” she says. “While it is a time of crisis, it is also a time of tremendous opportunity to move messages. The media is happy to report positive stories and people are happy to read them. There is so much negativity. Companies should look for what is good and get the word out because that resonates now more than ever.” Amen to that!

And, one more thing, Lisa was thrilled to break the news to me exclusively that Mayor Mike Bloomberg, former governor George Pataki and New York State’s new Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will be the speakers at this year’s fundraising gala for The New York League of Conservation Voters (she’s co-chair of the board) scheduled for May 28 at Chelsea Piers.

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Somers Farkas, Francine LeFrak and two other well-heeled gals

2. Mike Medavoy and a dark-haired gent we didn’t recognize

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Jon Burnham. Joe told me he’s off to Texas to visit mom. Thanks, Joe, for telling me about the terrific mention in Liz Smith‘s column last week on wowOwow.com about our weekly ‘Lunch’ assignations. Have a safe trip to Texas and see you in two weeks.

4. Martin Dunn and Steven Rubenstein.

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Lunch: A Heaping Helping of The Usual Suspects

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— DIANE CLEHANE

It’s a lo-cal edition of ‘Lunch’ today. After all, you can’t expect to indulge in a diet rich in celebs and boldface names every week. We’ve spoiled you, I know. (By the way, if you’re looking to chat with some big-time media mavens and news makers, don’t miss the first TVNewser Summit on March 10.) After settling in at the bar, I went searching for tasty tidbits and found some of the regulars ready to serve up some interesting morsels. Men’s Health honcho David Zinczenko, who was praised in Keith Kelly‘s column in today’s New York Post as “a winner” and “the face” of Rodale, returned to the dining room after a long absence. “I’ve been having a lot more lunches at my desk,” Dave told me. Fresh off a round of appearances for his latest Eat This, Not That blockbuster book, Dave was lunching with Michael Caruso, the former editor-in-chief of Men’s Journal now with OpenGate Capital, the equity fund that recently bought TV Guide. No one multitasks like Dave, who was thrilled to show me the April issues of Men’s Health and its increasingly successful sister, Women’s Health, which boasts its first-ever beauty ‘flip cover.’ Dave is thrilled with new-ish hire Michele Promaulayko as editor for Women’s Health and was singing her praises with what she’d done with her first issue. “She’s already a star,” says Dave.

As luck would have it, Michele was right across the room lunching with The Food Network’s Giada De Laurentiis so I went over and introduced myself. Michele told me she was “thrilled” to be with the title, and we chatted about the always interesting experience of interviewing and shooting celebs and dished over what makes for a great fashion story. I told her I loved the piece on dressing for work. It looked terrific and oh-so-chic. We both agreed service has its place, but the pictures have to dazzle. And in her premiere issue, they do. “Fashion cred is important,” Michele told me. You’ve got it.

At the bar, there was plenty of conversation among Michael McCarty and his staff about the design for the new label for the upcoming release of his 2005 Pinot Noir from The Malibu Vineyard Rambla Pacifico. It’s his first since replanting in 2000 (in case you were wondering). We cast our vote to stay with the classic but modern look of the 2004 label. Sommelier Seth Liebman tells me the talk also turned to wine yesterday when Jack Kliger, an avid collector, wanted to enjoy a glass of 1970 Les Forts de Latour and didn’t want the rest of the bottle of the impressive vintage to go to waste, so he graciously offered some to director Stephen Daldry. Cheers!

Here’s the rundown on today’s crowd:

1. Steve Rubenstein presiding over a table of movers and shakers including Marty Bandier

2. Peter Brown with another distinguished gent (Update: That distinguished gent was New York Daily News editor-in-chief and deputy publisher Martin Dunn)

3. ‘Mayor’ Joe Armstrong and Lisa Caputo

4. David Zinczenko and Michael Caruso

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What Did Stray-Rod’s Blonde Have To Do With Daily News‘ Firings?

Heads are rolling at the Daily News, with new executive editor David Ng making drastic personnel changes at the paper. Well-respected metropolitan editor Dean Chang is out, replaced by former Post news managing editor (and current United Federation of Teachers press secretary) Stuart Marques (whose wife, JoAnne Wasserman, just happens to be an editor at the News). National editor Mark Mooney was fired as well.

Both the metro editor and national editor desks have been abolished; instead, Marques‘ new title will be “managing editor/news” and new hire William Goldschlag is expected to be named as the News‘ political editor. The New York Post spoke with a News source, who gave additional background:

“It’s bleak,” said one veteran reporter. “Dean and Mark were sort of the heart and soul of the newsroom. Most people’s loyalties flowed to those guys much more than to Martin Dunn or David Ng.” Said another insider: “People don’t know why it happened. There’s been zero communication from the guys at the top.”

In fact, many rank-and-file staffers were aghast that Ng hadn’t suffered, because he had apparently blown a chance to break the story about Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez cavorting around Toronto with another woman.

EARLIER:

  • ‘Stray-Rod Scandal’ Reaches Day Three
  • Daily News‘ Dunn Fires Back At Post‘s Keith Kelly

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    From Jared Paul Stern, Monday:

    Is Daily News owner Mort Zuckerman shopping for his own ethically-challenged Brit editor to give the New York Post a run for its money? The “Spectator” column of London’s Independent on Sunday is reporting that ousted News of the World editor-in-chief Andy Coulson was recently offered the top spot at the Daily News, which is currently occupied by “limp-wristed” limey Martin Dunn.

    From today’s Keith Kelly column in the Post:

    It could be that time is growing short for Editor-in-Chief Martin Dunn at the helm of Mort Zuckerman‘s struggling Daily News. The Independent, a London daily, said that Andy Coulson, former News of the World editor-in-chief, was approached about the job recently, but turned it down. Dunn’s current contract expires at the end of the year, and talks about a new contract have not even begun. Nobody is expecting that they will.

    From our inbox this morning:

    From: Martin Dunn
    Sent: Wednesday, June 06, 2007 9:16 AM
    To: mediabistro.com
    Subject: mediabistro.com: General questions, comments, or crises

    Rumors of my demise are greatly exaggerated. As always, Keith Kelly has one fact right — my name. It was MY call, not Mort‘s, to offer Andy Coulson an opportunity to come to New York as AN editor, not THE editor, if he wanted to. One small word, so much meaning. The rest of the Post article is, sadly, as fanciful as Keith Kelly becoming the next editor of the Wall Street Journal if Rupert succeeds in buying it.

    Jared Paul Stern Returns To Gossip Writing, Blasts Daily News

    jared_paul_stern_sm.jpgWell, sort of. Yesterday, the scorned Page Six scribe posted a gossip item on his infrequently-updated Web site “Night & Day” blasting his former paper’s rival, Daily News owner Mort Zuckerman, while managing to sideswipe New York Post editor Col Allan as “ethically-challenged” — all in under 250 words!

    June 3, 2007 — Is Daily News owner Mort Zuckerman shopping for his own ethically-challenged Brit editor to give the New York Post a run for its money? The “Spectator” column of London’s Independent on Sunday is reporting that ousted News of the World editor-in-chief Andy Coulson was recently offered the top spot at the Daily News, which is currently occupied by “limp-wristed” limey Martin Dunn.

    Coulson, 38, a former gossip columnist for the London Sun, resigned from News of the World in January after one of the paper’s editors was jailed in the wake of a Royal phone-tapping scandal. The “Spectator” does not elaborate on details of Zuckerman’s offer, but Coulson turned it down in favor of a top public relations job with Britain’s Conservative party last week.

    News of the Coulson gambit, which has not yet been reported Stateside, calls into question Dunn’s continued tenure under notoriously mercurial Snooze boss Zuckerman, who’s famous for blindsiding his editors. Of course, since no-one else was hired folowing the departure of former News EIC Michael Cooke in 2005, it’s just possible Coulson was invited to work under Dunn — for now. Interesting to note that Coulson’s replacement at News of the World, Rupert Murdoch‘s trashiest and best-selling tabloid, is former New York Post executive editor Colin Myler.

    EARLIER:

  • Jared Paul Stern Wants Post Job Back