Last week marked the 30th anniversary of an historic deal closed by Reginald Francis Lewis for $985 million that changed the face of financial dealmaking in the United States.
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On November 30, 1987, Lewis closed the leveraged buyout of Beatrice International Foods, which at the time was the largest offshore transaction in the United States. Besides the outsize money involved in the transaction, Lewis made history as the first African American billionaire business tycoon. His investment banker, Michael Milken, and the company made the Fortune 500.
“We want the new generation to be inspired by the work of RFL on that November 30, 1987.” Loida Lewis, his widow said as the family celebrated his legacy, according to the Pittsburgh Courier. “He demonstrated his belief in and commitment to human rights, civil rights and economic development.”
U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings on Friday marked the anniversary of the historic deal by placing the financial transaction milestone in the U.S Congressional Record in honor of Lewis’ work.
Lewis was a native of Baltimore, Maryland. On Thursday, the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture will celebrate Lewis’ 75th birth anniversary with the event: Reginald F. Lewis, The Conversation: The $Billion Deal, The Lifestyle, The Man.
His legacy contains many firsts. He became the first (and still the only) person accepted to Harvard Law School before applying to the prestigious school. Today, the Reginald F. Lewis International Law Center is the first Harvard Law School building to be named for an African American.
Highlights of Lewis’ exceptional life are on display at the Smithsonian National African American Museum of History and Culture in Washington, D.C. And during Black History Month in 2018, public television station WNET is scheduled to release a documentary about his life. He was co-author of the book, Why Should White Guys Have All the Fun?
Click here to read more about his life.
SOURCE: Pittsburgh Courier
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20 Things You Didn’t Know About The Legendary Michael Jackson
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1. MJ was a victim of physical abuse from his father as a child. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, he shed tears and claimed that he was so terrified of his father that he would often vomit when he saw him.
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2. His favorite animated character from childhood was Pinocchio.
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3. When MJ listened to the songs from his days in The Jackson 5, he said he sounded like “Minnie Mouse.”
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4. His middle name was Joseph – Michael Joseph Jackson.
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5. “Billie Jean” is allegedly based on a true story. MJ claims an obsessive fan tried to say he was the father of her child.
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6. His first song to hit the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart was “Ben” in 1972.
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7. MJ was a huge Beatles fan. He paid $47 million for the publishing rights to the Beatles back catalogue in 1985 and sold a share of it to Sony in 1995 for $95 million.
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8. Get this… The costumes for the “Thriller” video came from the Salvation Army.
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9. Jackson invented and owns the patent for the special anti-gravity boots he wore that allowed him to lean forward extremely far in live performances of “Smooth Criminal.”
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10. MJ loved animals, and had several…strange pets. He had a python called Crusher, two llamas called Louis and Lola, and his most famous pet was Bubbles, the chimpanzee.
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11. Sources say MJ “borrowed” the Moonwalk from street dancers he saw outside a hotel.
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12. The original song title for “Thriller” was “Starlight.”
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13. Sources say MJ slept in an oxygen tent to live longer and for cosmetic purposes.
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14. MJ was a proud owner of a 2,700-acre Neverland Ranch that has a theme park, a menagerie, and a movie theater.
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15. “Home Alone” star Macaulay Culkin was one of MJ’s closest friends, and is the godfather of two of Jackson’s children.
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16. MJ’s estate signed a deal with Sony that gave them access to his unreleased recordings for $250 million.
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17. MJ often wore a black armband to remind people of the suffering of children around the world.
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18. The Los Angeles mansion he was renting just before he passed away once belonged to Sean Connery.
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19. MJ was allegedly a pretty avid reader… He was once accused by a library of owing $1 million in overdue book fines.
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20. Wikipedia, Twitter, and AOL’s Instant Messenger all crashed at 3:15PM on the day MJ died: June 25, 2009.
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