Tag: Connecticut

Terry Crews Named New Host Of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”

rewsActor former NFL player Terry Crews has sealed a deal to become the new host of the syndicated Who Wants To Be A Millionaire for the next 13th season, which launches in the fall. He succeeds Cedric the Entertainer, who hosted the show this season. Who Wants To Be A Millionaire is going through a number of changes, including a move to to Stamford, Connecticut where it is expected to benefit from a tax break.

Crews, who co-stars in Fox’s comedy series Brooklyn Nine-Nine, had been exploring doing a syndicated show and met with several studios, with Disney-ABC jumping in with the Millionaire offer. “Terry is engaging, endearing, smart, and quick on his feet — the perfect combination to lead one of the longest-running franchises in game show history,” said Janice Marinelli, president, Disney-ABC Domestic TV.

This marks the latest career expansion for Crews who started as an athlete before moving to entertainment. “In addition to my film projects including Blended, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and now being a first time author, hosting has always been a dream of mine, and I couldn’t have asked for a greater opportunity,” he said. Crews’ recent credits include a recurring stints on The Newsroom and Arrested Development and roles in Tyler Perry’s The Single Moms Club and Ivan Reitman’s Draft Day.

Next up is the comedy Blended with Adam Sandler and he’ll be reprising his role as “Hale Caesar” in the third installment of the Expendables franchise. Crews also penned his first book, memoir “Manhood,” which comes out May 20.

article by Nellie Andreeva via Deadline.com

Joanne Berger-Sweeney Appointed Trinity College President, 1st Female and African-American to Hold Post

New Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney
New Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney

HARTFORD — Several hundred Trinity College students, faculty and alumni greeted Joanne Berger-Sweeney, named Thursday as the college’s first African-American and first woman president, with enthusiastic whoops and applause.  “How could you have a warmer welcome for someone?” said Berger-Sweeney, a dean at Tufts University in Medford, Mass. “It’s not very often that I get to walk into a room and there’s a standing ovation.”  But then, she noted, to a roar of laughter, there were no seats in the room.

Berger-Sweeney, 55, a neuroscientist who was accompanied at Thursday’s announcement by her husband and two children, told the crowd she fell in love with Trinity the moment she first set foot on campus — shortly before New Year’s.  “We came through the arch … I looked to the left and saw the chapel, I looked to the right and saw this beautiful long walk, and I thought: I think I could be here,” Berger-Sweeney said. “… Some people may want to be on small bucolic campuses in Maine, but not me. I want to be right here.”

After that visit Berger-Sweeney decided to apply and emerged as the winner when the Trinity board of trustees Tuesday voted unanimously for her. She will be the college’s 22nd president.  Berger-Sweeney will take the helm at Trinity as it continues to grapple with financial challenges, a reputation as a party school, security concerns, campus climate and conflict with fraternities and sororities over policy changes.

“Trinity is a forward-looking institution that excels in liberal arts and sciences, and both are areas of excellence for Dr. Berger-Sweeney, who rose to the top of our highly competitive candidate pool,” said Cornelia Parsons Thornburgh, who led the search committee and will become chairwoman of Trinity’s board of trustees on July 1. “She impressed us with her strong academic credentials, curricular innovations, collaborative nature and enthusiasm for the Hartford community.

“I strongly believe that her vision of Trinity College as an elite liberal arts college with an urban pulse is one that will guide us, inspire us and lead us on a path to distinction and greatness,” Thornburgh said.  James F. Jones Jr., who has been Trinity’s president for a decade and will retire June 30, called the moment historic and said that Berger-Sweeney’s appointment brought him “an enormous sigh of relief” to know that his “successor is going to be a star.”

Berger-Sweeney, who has been dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts since 2010, brings with her experience that is relevant to Trinity, Thornburgh said. “At Tufts, she has proven herself in areas that coincide closely with, and are important to, Trinity: proximity to a city, a strong athletic tradition, budget and program coordination, an historical Greek tradition, and a deep appreciation for a liberal arts education.”

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Prince Books Trio of Special East Coast Shows for December

Prince
Prince (Courtesy Prince)

Over a career spanning nearly four decades, Prince has taken home seven Grammys and sold over 100 million copies of albums including Purple Rain and Sign “O” the Times. Now, the legend is announcing plans to bring his epic live show to the East Coast with a trio of gigs next month at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

The concerts kick off Friday, December 27th, followed with a Saturday, December 28th, performance and finishing on Sunday, December 29th. Tickets for all three gigs go on sale Friday, December 6th, at 10 a.m. EST through Ticketmaster (more info here).

The past three months have been eventful for the Minneapolis native. After a longstanding and highly public battle against the Internet, Prince joined Twitter in August and used the forum to share the artwork for his new single “Breakfast Can Wait,” which features comedian Dave Chappelle’s impersonation of the artist from Chappelle’s Show. Six weeks later, nearly 2,000 fans lined an out-of-the-way block in suburban Minnesota to watch the artist jam at his Paisley Park studio. (They were treated to a career-spanning funk blowout.) And just last week, he returned to Twitter and posted another single, “Da Bourgeoisie,” a sparse, bass-thumping track about “kicking it with another girl.”

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/prince-books-trio-of-special-east-coast-shows-20131125#ixzz2lhFFbQC0 

Lauryn Hill Announces 1st Post-Prison Concert Date in New York

 Lauryn Hill will return to the stage on Thanksgiving Eve at Bowery Ballroom in New York City, according to reports.
Lauryn Hill will return to the stage on Thanksgiving Eve at Bowery Ballroom in New York City, according to reports. (DAVID WOLFF VIA GETTY IMAGES)

Lauryn Hill will return to the stage on Thanksgiving Eve at Bowery Ballroom in New York City, reports NJ.com. This will be Hill’s first performance since beginning her three-month prison stint in a Danbury, Conn., jail in July for tax evasion. She was released on Oct. 4.  “I can confirm she was released, and she’s doing well,” her attorney Lou Nathan Hochman told the Daily News at the time. “Her court case is now 100 percent done. She has one year of supervised release, and then she’ll be completely done.”

Furthermore, the former Fugees member was given permission to postpone her house arrest in order to commence with tour dates. Hochman confirmed Hill is allowed to tour from Nov. 15 to Dec. 31, according to the court order signed by Judge Madeline Cox Arleo.  However, she’ll start out the New Year on house arrest as her home-confinement sentencing will begin on January 1.  The mother of six children with Rohan Marley, Bob Marley’s son, definitely knows how to time things correctly in her musical career. Her latest single “Consumerism” was released on her Tumblr page the day before she got out of federal prison. It is now available on iTunes.

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Lauryn Hill Released From Prison, Says Attorney

Lauryn Hill Released From PrisonDANBURY, Conn. — DANBURY, Conn. (AP) — Lauryn Hill’s attorney says she has been released from federal prison after serving time for failing to pay taxes.  Hill left the facility in Danbury, Connecticut today.  Her attorney Nathan Hochman says he hasn’t had a chance to speak to his client yet.

Hill pleaded guilty last year to not paying taxes on more than $1.5 million earned from 2005 to 2007. She was sentenced in July to serve three months. Under terms of her plea agreement, she’ll spend the next three months under home confinement. She lives in South Orange, N.J.

Hill, a former member of the Fugees and winner of multiple Grammys, has said she stopped paying taxes after she dropped out of the music business to protect herself and her children, who now number six.

article via huffingtonpost.com

WNBA All-Stars Team Up For Fit Clinic

WNBA All-Star Ivory Latta does push-ups with kids from New London Parks and Recreation during a WNBA Fit Clinic at BDJMS in New London, CT on Friday July 26, 2013. (Credit: Carrie Healey)
WNBA All-Star Ivory Latta does push-ups with kids from New London Parks and Recreation during a WNBA Fit Clinic at BDJMS in New London, CT on Friday July 26, 2013. (Credit: Carrie Healey)

WNBA All-Star players teamed up with R&B singer Trevor Jackson and Miss USA Erin Brady to help dedicate a newly refurbished basketball court and conduct a fitness clinic for elementary students on Friday at Bennie Dover Jackson Middle School (BDJMS) in New London, CT.  The middle school court was recently refurbished by Bona, the official hardwood floor care partner of the WNBA.  Bona and Jamba Juice, a WNBA FIT partner, helped conduct the fitness clinic that included 75 boys and girls from New London Parks & Recreation.

Maya Moore, Tina Charles, Ivory Latta, Allison Hightower and Lindsay Whalen were among the all-stars who helped put on the Fit Clinic for young students. The players lead different stations and drills for the children, including working on lay-ups, shooting and even jumping rope. “There are a lot of elementary school kids here getting the chance to participate in different activities,” Minnesota Lynx player Maya Moore told theGrio. “It’s all to encourage them to enjoy a healthy, fit, active lifestyle, and just to have fun.”

“I’m glad I continue to make them proud,” the former University of Connecticut star said about her college fans. “Being back in Connecticut is always great.”  Moore said she enjoys giving back and being “a good role model for the kids here.”

“It’s nice to be out here today, give back to the community and the kids,” Connecticut Sun guard Allison Hightower said. “It’s very important because if you’re not active now, you won’t be active when you’re older.”

“We’re trying to get [the children] active, show them the different things they can do at home or at school,” Tina Charles (Connecticut Sun) said.

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DAR in Norwalk Makes History with 1st African-American Regent Autier Allen-Craft

NORWALK, Conn. — Autier Allen-Craft, the first African-American member of the Daughters of the American Revolution in Connecticut, was inducted last week as regent of Norwalk-Village Green Chapter, according to a statement from the group.

“There are many African-American women who are not aware that they have Patriot ancestors,” Allen-Craft said. “An estimated 5,000 black soldiers fought on the patriot side during the Revolutionary War. Their female ancestors are entitled to become members of the CTDAR. My goal is to assist African-Americans, as well as any other resident of Norwalk who believes she is a descendant, become a member.”

As the new regent, Allen-Craft said she is looking forward to growing the chapter’s membership.

“Our registrar will help compile the research material and submit the required paperwork needed to become members of the Norwalk-Village Green Chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. We welcome all inquiries.”

Allen-Craft is the second African-American to become a regent in Connecticut. Also, at the 120th annual state conference in Hartford on March 23, she was elected to the position of the South Western District director for the state of Connecticut.

For the past two years, Allen-Craft has been vice regent  for the Norwalk-Village Green Chapter, working with Pat Rubino, the outgoing regent.  

The Norwalk-Village Green Chapter was organized on Dec. 16, 1892. The society is made up of women who can trace their lineage back to one or more of the Revolutionary patriots. In keeping with a focus on history, education and patriotism, the local chapter was responsible for erecting many of the historical markers and monuments commemorating the history of Norwalk.

Allen-Craft’s two children, Jaylen and Aren Craft, belong to the Captain Stephen Betts Society of the Children of the American Revolution. They are the first African-American members in the state of Connecticut.

Jay-Z Adds WNBA’s Skylar Diggins To Roc Nation Sports

skylar

Jay-Z’s Roc Nation Sports announced Thursday that Skylar Diggins, the third overall pick in the 2013 WNBA Draft, is the newest professional athlete to sign with the burgeoning sports agency.  “It’s the ROC in here!” Diggins tweeted after the news broke on Jay’s Life+Times site.“ShockNation meets RocNation.”

The former University of Notre Dame standout was recently selected by the Tulsa Shock in Connecticut last week. The 22-year old Associated Press First-Team All-American point guard will join New York Yankee Robinson Cano at Jay’s new company, which is a joint venture with the fabled Creative Artists Agency, boasting clients such as New York Knicks star Carmelo Anthony and Buster Posey, who recently inked a $167 million deal with the San Francisco Giants.

The Blueprint III MC recently divested his minority ownership stake in the Brooklyn Nets in order to be eligible to pursue NBA athletes. With the NBA Draft coming up in June, look for more breakout basketball stars to be throwing up the Roc in the coming months.

article by Maurice Bobb via rapfix.mtv.com

Brittney Griner No. 1 Pick by Phoenix Mercury in WNBA Draft

Brittney Griner, left, shakes hands with WNBA President Laurel J. Richie after the Phoenix Mercury selected Griner as the No. 1 pick in the WNBA basketball draft, Monday, April 15, 2013, in Bristol, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)
Brittney Griner, left, shakes hands with WNBA President Laurel J. Richie after the Phoenix Mercury selected Griner as the No. 1 pick in the WNBA basketball draft, Monday, April 15, 2013, in Bristol, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)
BRISTOL, Conn. (AP) — Brittney Griner left an indelible mark on women’s college basketball. Now she’s ready to take on the pros.  The Phoenix Mercury took Baylor’s star center with the top pick in the WNBA draft Monday night. Despite knowing she was going first, the two-time AP Player of the Year admitted she was extremely nervous.

“It’s a dream come true, I’m like a little kid in Disney World the first time meeting all the characters,” Griner said. “Sitting at the table they said 15 seconds and my heart started beating so fast. I was grabbing the tablecloth underneath.”

The 6-foot-8 phenom finished as the second all-time scorer in women’s NCAA history, with 3,283 points. She is the top shot-blocker ever, shattering both the men’s and women’s college marks with 748. She also had a record 18 dunks — including 11 this season.  WNBA president Laurel Richie opened the draft offering the league’s thoughts and prayers to those affected by the bombings in Boston. She said earlier in the evening that the WNBA had discussions whether to hold the draft, deciding to go ahead with it.

And then soon after the draft started she announced Griner as the first choice.  

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Civil Rights Lawyer Michelle Alexander Speaks Against Mass Incarceration: the “New Jim Crow”

At a Monday talk, civil rights lawyer Michelle Alexander condemned mass incarceration of African-Americans as a form of legalized discrimination.

Monday at Yale University, civil rights lawyer Michelle Alexander condemned mass incarceration of African-Americans as a form of legalized discrimination. (Photo/Maria Zepeda)

Michelle Alexander, a civil rights lawyer who gained national renown after publishing the book “The New Jim Crow,” spoke to students and faculty at the Yale Divinity School Monday afternoon about the phenomenon of mass incarceration in the United States, which she described as a legalized form of racial discrimination. Because African-Americans make up a large percentage of America’s prison population, Alexander said millions of African-Americans nationwide are deprived of basic human rights to housing and employment, adding that the prisoners have fallen victim to the kind of racial discrimination that existed at the time of Jim Crow.

“We have not ended racial caste in America, we have merely redesigned it,” she said. “This is a system that has literally turned back the clock on racial progress in the U.S.”

Alexander said a series of American government campaigns to curb the illegal drug trade, commonly referred to as the war on drugs, is causing an unprecedented number of incarcerations, especially of people of color. More than 45 million people have been “swept into the system” for drug offenses, Alexander said, adding that the number of people currently incarcerated for drug offenses surpasses the number of people incarcerated for any one reason in 1980.

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