Bar Family Law Section updates its Web portal

first_imgBar Family Law Section updates its Web portal The Family Law Section has launched a new Web portal to better serve members and the general public, according to Caroline Black, the section’s chair-elect.Located at www.familylawfla.org, the new site is designed with more user-friendly access in mind.“The site contains more information and resources for a family law practitioner than ever before, including online searchable comprehensive lists of family law attorneys, judges, special masters, and mediators; a section calendar with up-to-the-minute information about section events, meetings, and seminars; recent editions of Family Law Section publications; and a bulletin board to post questions about a case, a legal issue, or simply for input on any topic regarding family law or the section,” Black said.The portal is divided into a general interest section, available to anyone, and a password-protected section members’ area. New log-in information is provided via e-mail when a section member accesses the protected members’ area for the first time.The general interest section contains:• Information about the Family Law Section, its officers, and committees.• Answers to frequently asked questions about family laws in Florida.• A searchable database of Family Law Section attorneys in Florida, broken down by county, city, and last name. The information available includes contact information, certification status, e-mail address, and Web site, if applicable.• A legal resources section that contains family law-related call-a-law scripts, consumer pamphlets, and a legal links page.• A membership form for attorneys to join the section.The members’ section contains:• Access to the Family Law Section bulletin board, where members can post questions and receive help and advice from other family law attorneys.• The Family Law Section calendar with up-to-date information about events and meetings.• Information about Family Law Section committees.• Access to the directory of family law judges, special masters, and mediators.• A member records update page.• Access to the Commentator and FAMSEG online.Black said the section also plans more enhancements to its Web site in the near future, including expanding the links page; providing more in-depth information for CLE seminars, retreats, and seminars; the inclusion of a lawyers’ marketplace where members of the section can find information about litigation support services, technology firms, and expanded profiles on member attorneys. April 1, 2002 Regular Newscenter_img Bar Family Law Section updates its Web portallast_img read more

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‘Jetman’ stuns with Iron Man-style flight over Dubai

first_imgTopics : Reffet’s carbon fibre wings are powered by four mini jet engines. The equipment, which is controlled by the pilot’s movements, is capable of reaching speeds of 400 kilometres (250 miles) per hour.On Friday, Reffet hovered five metres above the crystal waters of Dubai’s coast before shooting off into the air and skimming the city’s skyline. The Jetmen have pulled off a series of eye-popping flights in Dubai, soaring in tandem above the world’s tallest building Burj Khalifa, and alongside an Emirates Airbus A380, the world’s largest commercial airplane.Last year, Reffet and fellow Frenchman Fred Fugen also flew through the famed “Heaven’s Gate” archway in the mountains of China’s Hunan province. Daredevil Vince Reffet has soared into the skies above Dubai in the latest “Jetman” stunt, taking off from the ground and climbing to 1,800metres (nearly 6,000 feet) in a feat reminiscent of Marvel’s “Iron Man” and hailed as a world first.Reffet and his collaborators, known as “Jetmen”, have literally scaled new heights with the help of jetpacks and carbon-fire wings, staging a series of aerial displays that send them tearing through the skies at breakneck speed.In an awe-inspiring flight captured on viral video, the Frenchman on Friday hovered five metres above the crystal waters of Dubai’s coast before shooting off into the air and skimming the city’s skyline. center_img “We accomplished another world first in 100 percent autonomous human flight with @jetmandubai, who took off from the ground before soaring to a high-altitude flight of up to 1,800m!” tweeted Expo 2020 Dubai, the mammoth trade fair that will open in October.We accomplished another world first in 100 per cent autonomous human flight with @JetmanDubai, who took off from the ground before soaring to a high-altitude flight of up to 1,800m! @xDubai #Expo2020 #Dubai #MissionHumanFlight #TheWorldsGreatestShow #xDubai #JetMan pic.twitter.com/xJc0VR4Cfw— Expo 2020 Dubai (@expo2020dubai) February 17, 2020The Jetmen had previously launched themselves into the air by jumping down from high platforms. “It’s the result of extremely thorough teamwork, where each small step generated huge results. Everything was planned to the split second, and I was overjoyed by the progress that was achieved,” Reffet said in a statement.”One of the next objectives is to land back on the ground after a flight at altitude, without needing to open a parachute. It’s being worked on.”last_img read more

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India’s poor, hammered by coronavirus lockdown, fear for future

first_imgTopics : Shaikh Bahaduresha, 31, lived on Mumbai’s streets for two months last year, unable to make ends meet on his meager taxi-driving profits of roughly $5 a day. After he got married in December, his wife put some money towards renting a small apartment, and they moved in together.But with much of India now under lockdown to fight the coronavirus, Bahaduresha’s newfound stability could come crashing down.He has no more taxi customers, which means he cannot afford food beyond rice and lentils, and will not be able to pay his rent, due on Tuesday. “So far, the prime minister’s intervention has put the onus of responsibility on citizens … but it has fallen short of explaining clearly what the state is going to do,” said Gilles Verniers, a political science professor at Ashoka University near New Delhi.”There is nothing that looks like a national plan on the social front.”The prime minister’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.Some markets near the slum were closed and vendors still selling vegetables on the pavement said their distributors were no longer supplying them.Dharavi residents said they were stretching out meals and forgoing pricier foods such as mutton. Khatun, a frail 70-year-old, wept on her bed as she recounted that her son, who does odd painting jobs, was out of work.Ajay Kewat, 21, said his family only had provisions for a few more days: “I’m afraid that after a week, there won’t be food.” center_img “I have no savings. My wife and I will be on the street again,” said Bahaduresha as he waited in vain next to shuttered stores for a cab owner who he said owed him a deposit. “The USA is a VIP country, you can block it for a month and it’s okay, but in India you have to take care of the poor.”Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged India’s 1.3 billion people to stay home and the majority of the country is under lockdown. As of Monday, India had reported 471 cases of the virus and nine deaths.A dozen Indians living in Mumbai’s sprawling Dharavi slum said they supported the clampdown, but wanted government support.The issue highlights how difficult it is for countries to tackle the virus without destroying livelihoods – a challenge that is especially acute in developing nations with significant populations living hand-to-mouth.last_img read more

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Swiss regulator pushes for conversion rate in view of COVID-19 crisis

first_imgThe Swiss federal pensions regulator Oberaufsichtskommission (OAK BV) is pressing for an accelerated process of adjusting pension funds’ technical parameters based on economic and demographic scenarios in light of the COVID-19 crisis.Manfred Hüsler, the director of the supervisory body, told IPE that one particular parameter to change is the Umwandlungssatz (UWS), the conversion rate used to calculate pension payouts from accrued assets upon retirement, for the mandatory part of the occupational pension plan.“The last adjustment was made 15 years ago, since then life expectancy has risen and interest rates have dropped significantly,” he said.The parliament tried twice to review the conversion rate, in 2010 and 2017, but a referendum rejected the proposal, he added. In the regulator’s latest annual report on pension funds’ financial positions, OAK BV disclosed results of a survey of 1,504 funds, which represent 92.6% of all Swiss second pillar pension funds, with assets totalling CHF1trn (€995bn).The report noted that 59% of the funds with 67% of the retirement savings had already lowered their conversion rates to 6% or lower, in fact anticipating the proposal for a reform to the Swiss second pillar pension system which expected a reduction to 6%.The Umwandlungssatz still represents a dominant risk for the second pillar system, OAK said.The coronavirus crisis has forced an extension on the reform consultation until May 29, after the Federal Council had invited the Swiss Employers’ Association (SAV), the Swiss Trade Union Federation (SGB) and Travail.Suisse to make a series of proposals for a review.“There is a clear majority in the parliament that supports reducing the conversion rate, but it is difficult to assess what the parliament’s decision will look like and whether the reform will pass, especially whether there will be a referendum,” Hüsler said, adding that a public vote can be expected on such an important matter.A reduction of the conversion rate will have an impact on the compulsory part of occupational pensions, lowering in particular the pensions of low-income workers, therefore, “there should be a compensation for these people. How this can be financed or how high it should be is very controversial,” he added.In its annual report, the authority found that the guaranteed interest rate for pensions further reduced last year, but interest rates fell deeper. Interest rates are, in many cases, higher than the technical interest rates used by pension funds to determine their funding level.This difference is not designed by law and has not yet been financed through equal contributions, it added.Returns and funding levelsPension funds have achieved above-average returns in equity, real estate and bonds in recent years. The funding level at the end of 2019 was consistently good despite low interest rates, with 99% of private and public pension schemes without guarantees achieving funding levels of at least 100%, compared to 86% in the prior year.The coverage ratio of funds without guarantees rose on average to 111.6% last year compared to 106.4% the previous year, and in the case of public pension funds with guarantees to 79.8% in 2019 from 77.7% in the year before. Manfred Hüsler, director at OAK BVAt the end of April, funding levels reached 105.6% for pension funds without guarantees, and 75.5% for public pension funds with guarantees, while 7% of the funds without guarantees showed a rather high or a high risk in terms of funding levels.The coverage situation for pension schemes with a state guarantee continues to lead to significantly higher risks, according to the report.“Pension plans with a state guarantee are exposed to the development of the capital market in roughly the same way (of those without guarantees), but you have employers under public law,” Hüsler said.The recession caused by COVID-19 crisis will not impact upon state pension plans, employers in the public sector will not lose jobs because of insolvencies, which means that companies will not lose contributions, he added.Last year, the average net return on assets generated by pension funds without guarantees was 10.4% compared to -2.8% in 2018, and 11.5% for public pension funds with state guarantee, compared to -2.6% the previous year.OAK warned that losses on all major investment classes can materialize in 2020, in addition to an increase in underfunding levels, which has already ballooned to 25.4% in the first four months of 2020 compared to 1.1% at the end of 2019.The volatility of stock markets caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has put pension funds under stress, teh report stated, adding that schemes will have to be able to critically assess whether underfunding is only a cause of market turmoil or of structural financing problems.The latter must be addressed as quickly as possible, OAK said in the report.For the regulator, pensions funds that would be able to mitigate the negative economic effects of the coronavirus crisis would reinforce financial stability based on already good funding levels prior to the crisis.Looking for IPE’s latest magazine? Read the digital edition here.last_img read more

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Street trade needs controls – John Roughan

first_imgNZ Herald 20 october 2012Papatoetoe must have been a pleasant little town on Great South Rd before Auckland spread like a tidal wave in the 1960s and covered the surrounding county in state houses and bungalows for the population boom. The town still had its own council in the 1970s when I started work and sometimes covered its meetings. The mayor and council were quiet, practical types who knew every building in the borough, though even by then there was no discernable boundary between Papatoetoe, Mangere and the rest of what would soon become Manukau City. Urban life has not been kind to the old town. Today people drive through Hunters Corner and hesitate to slow down because the place has become notorious for street prostitution. The shop owners have been complaining about it for years and they are not talking about women entirely, street prostitution is the rough trade.…The problem is nobody really wants to discuss this one. Not Parliament, where their bill is now long overdue for a second reading. Not news reports, using words and illustrations that leave an impression the conflict involves pretty young females and fuddy duddies. Not even McCracken, who doesn’t strike me as a homophobe. Like every former policeman he sounds no longer shocked at anything. When a transvestite tapped on his car window while he was taking his child to school the other day his response, as he describes it, was milder than mine would have been. He doesn’t say transvestite. When that term was used in a booklet the boards put out a few months ago with the help of the Auckland Council, one of the more sensitive council members cautioned them that they might be referring to transgendered people. It is not just the propositioning that causes concern – McCracken reckons the customers sometimes approach children in daylight – it is the noise at night and the filth left around for residents and shopkeepers to clean up the next day. He says Hunters Corner is not the only shopping centre in South Auckland suffering in this way. The Mangere-Otahuhu and Manurewa local boards have joined his in pressing for the legislation. But the others keep quieter about it. In July, when they jointly put out the booklet of graphic testimony from retailers and residents, they thought the bill was about to come back from a select committee for its crucial conscience vote in the House.….Bylaws, he says, are useless. Unless they are made under the authority of a particular piece of legislation, police don’t believe they can enforce them. What the police believe matters more than legal argument. If the police don’t believe a bylaw will stand up in court they are not going to invest time and effort on the streets. The problem, he explains, is that when Parliament legalised prostitution nine years ago the act made no reference to street vendors. It assumed that once the industry was legal all the practitioners would move into licensed premises and councils would have had control over their location. It wouldn’t seem very hard to amend the law now to extend that control to the streets, but for some reason the legislators seem reluctant. Those who voted for legalisation in 2003 may be unwilling to acknowledge any deficiency in it. Those who opposed it probably have no stomach to revive the subject.http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=10841704last_img read more

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Bulldogs Spikers Get ‘W’s’

first_imgThe Freshmen team played Richmond tonight, while the Varsity and JV took on EIAC foe Rushville.From Coach Trenkamp:  ‘Tonight the freshman Lady Bulldogs defeated Richmond in 3 close games.  Serving is what got us the 2 wins along with positive attitude and hustle.  We were able to dig the ball and make some good hits.  Serving us up was 12pts 6aces was Brayleigh Patterson.  Digging in the back with coverage all over was Sophie Lee.  We played games 1 & 2 with 6 girls and game 3 with 8.  Scores were 25-18, 22-25, 15-14.’From Coach Prickel: ‘The Batesville JV volleyball team earned a much needed conference win vs. Rushville in convincing fashion. Scores were 25-12, 25-18. Grace Sarringhaus paced the team with 9 service points, while Nikki Fox added 7 points including 3 aces. Katie Bedel was aggressive with 7 kills in 16 swings, while Fox had 5 kills in only 8 attempts to lead the front row attack. Kerigan Haskamp and Shelby Westerfeld each earned a stuff block. Grace Laudick helped the team with 18 good digs from her Libero position.’In the varsity match the lady bulldogs showed little signs of weakness.  The girls played a complete game, minimized their errors and played with a relaxed sense of urgency.  We will have to polish some of that up moving forward, but it was a good/needed win (25-6, 25-16, 25-8).  We had multiple hitters over .400 for the first time this season and our hitting percentage as a team was .321.  #20 Hattie Westerfeld lead the team in points scored with 15 kills, 7 aces and 2 stuff blocks.  Right behind her was #5 Macy Prickel with 10 kills and five aces.  #11 Jenna Ertel held down the court defensively with 1/3 of the digs on the night, she had 11 of the 33 team digs.The JV & Varsity teams will travel to Jennings County on Thursday for a 6:00pm JV start time.Courtesy of Bulldogs Coach Jody Thomas.last_img read more

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Cross Country State Finals Results

first_imgThe 2019 XC season came to an end Saturday as we cheered on senior Adam Moster and sophomore Lily Pinckley as they competed at the Lavern Gibson Championship Cross Country course in Terre Haute for the State competition. Although we can say the weather was MUCH better than last weekend, it was still a bit chilly and windy. Adam stepped up to the line first at 1pm with 24 other teams and individuals joining him. (214 in all). Adam was among some incredible competition and finished in the top half of the race, right at the 100th spot with a time of 16:54. 45 minutes later, it was Lily’s turn. 205 ladies were ready to start the race when the connon went off. Lily fought all the way through the finish line and placed 63rd with a time of 19:24. Very proud of these two and thank all the teammates and fans that were able to make the trip to Terre Haute to cheer them on. It was an amazing 2019 XC season and I am sad to see it come to an end, but it was exciting yesterday to hear the underclassmen already talk about their goals for next season. Thanks to everyone for all their support throughout the season.Greensburg’s Brenner Hannah was 37th.16531Courtesy of Bulldogs Coach Lisa Gausman.last_img read more

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City To Flush Water Mains April 9-10

first_imgBATESVILLE, Ind. – The Batesville Water Utility will be flushing water mains on Thursday, April 9 and Friday, April 10. The flushing can significantly lower the water pressure and cause some fluctuations in water pressure. This sediment can contain iron and manganese and can stain clothing during washing and makes the water unsightly to drink.The purpose of the flushing is to remove sediment from the mains and improve the water quality, which is the Utilities’ primary concern.Questions concerning the flushing or problems experienced during this work should be directed to: During business hours, Eric Laker, Batesville Water Utility, Phone 812-934-3811, before business hours, call 812-212-8532.The flushing schedule is:last_img

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Aguero blow rocks City camp

first_imgManuel Pellegrini prepared for Manchester City’s crunch Champions League clash at Roma by revealing Sergio Aguero could be out for six weeks. But Pellegrini must now try to engineer a positive result without him. His side are level on five points with Roma and CSKA Moscow in a tight battle for the second last-16 qualification spot behind Bayern Munich. To go through City need to win and hope CSKA do not beat Bayern, or get a score draw and hope CSKA lose. A defeat would eliminate them from Europe altogether. It is likely to be a night of high tension in the Italian capital as City look to get what had been, until Aguero’s heroics against Bayern, a disappointing campaign. City had made no secret of their ambition to make their mark in the Champions League this season. A third exit at the group stage in four seasons could therefore raise questions about Pellegrini’s future but the 61-year-old does not feel his job is under threat. He said: “I don’t think so. Tomorrow is a very important game and all of us want to qualify but I don’t think that what happens will have some link about the future in my club. “I have never received any kind of pressure from the club. I hope we are going to qualify but I have nothing to be (concerned) about my future here.” Roma know that they will go through with a victory but anything less would open the door for City or CSKA. Pellegrini said: “I think both clubs have the same pressure. It is a big thing here in Italy, they have spent a lot of money on different players and have a very good squad. I think the pressure for both clubs is exactly the same.” As well as being without Aguero, City are again missing key midfielder Yaya Toure through suspension. The positive news is that playmaker David Silva, out since October with a knee injury, and captain Vincent Kompany, who has missed two games with a hamstring problem, have both trained and could return. Striker Stevan Jovetic, who was rested against Everton as a precaution against a hamstring niggle, could also feature – although Pellegrini was coy when asked about the trio. He said: “All of them could be ready. There is some doubt about one of them but we will see tomorrow.” Pellegrini admitted it has been a troubled group campaign but he is confident of a positive outcome. He said: “Maybe we made a lot of different mistakes in the other games, especially against the Russian team, but we have a chance. “As we demonstrated against Bayern Munich, we will fight to qualify. Tomorrow we will try to do it. I am sure we are going to do it if we play a very good game.” The City boss then insisted his job was not on the line as he looked ahead to the fixture that will determine his side’s immediate European fate without his star striker. Aguero, who has scored 19 goals this season and struck a dramatic hat-trick to keep City alive in Europe against Bayern Munich a fortnight ago, damaged knee ligaments in Saturday’s win over Everton. Press Association His absence will be keenly felt but Pellegrini was keen to take the focus away from the 26-year-old ahead of the decisive Group E contest at the Stadio Olimpico. Pellegrini, speaking at his pre-match press conference, said: “Well, Sergio – we know he is injured. He cannot play tomorrow. “He will see how long he will be out but I think it is more important for us to think about the players we have available for an important game against Roma.” When pressed on how long Aguero could be absent after he was assessed over the weekend, the Chilean said: “We know but it is difficult to know exactly how long he will be injured. “It could maybe be four, five or six weeks. It depends a lot on the way he recovers.” That would certainly rule him out of remaining games this month against Leicester, Crystal Palace, West Brom and Burnley, the New Year’s Day clash with Sunderland and an FA Cup third-round tie against Sheffield Wednesday. Should he be ruled out for six weeks, Aguero would also miss tough games against Everton and Arsenal but he could be back to face title Barclays Premier League rivals Chelsea on January 31. Aguero’s performances have been the key factor in City’s recent return to form with successive wins heading into the Roma clash. last_img read more

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Broadcaster George Hale still behind the microphone at 83

first_img Latest posts by Taylor Vortherms (see all) Bio EHS names new boys’ soccer coach – July 13, 2016 Latest Posts Part 1: Invisible, incapacitating concussions are sidelining high school athletes – July 19, 2016 Part 2: When the injury is inside your head, some “don’t get it” – July 26, 2016 Legendary broadcaster George Hale remains involved in the radio and television industry. PHOTO BY RICK MCHALE Taylor VorthermsSports Editor at The Ellsworth AmericanTaylor Vortherms covers sports in Hancock County. The St. Louis, Missouri native recently graduated from the Missouri School of Journalism and joined The Ellsworth American in 2013. BANGOR — Legendary sportscaster George Hale knew at age 6 what he wanted to be when he grew up.When Hale was a child, his parents would spot him in their front yard, describing the passing cars into a sawed off broomstick. Two decades later, Hale was using a real microphone to broadcast play-by-play action of the University of Maine football games.“Apparently, I was destined to do this,” Hale says.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textHale has done live commentary on more than 3,000 college and high school sporting events for WABI-Bangor. On Thursday night in Boston, the New England chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences — the same academy that distributes Emmys — will recognize Hale with the Gold Circle Award, honoring iconic television professionals in the industry for more than 50 years.Dan Cashman, “The Nite Show” host on WABI-Channel 5, nominated the 83-year-old veteran broadcaster for the award.“He’s a pillar of the broadcast community in Maine,” Cashman says of Hale. “There is no one else here with that kind of track record.”Hale has been on the air for 62 years, and he has no plans of retiring.On a Friday morning, after finishing a show for his George Hale/Ric Tyler weekday talk radio program on WVOM, Hale sips on a cup of iced tea inside Hero’s Sports Grill. A patron of the restaurant, his Maine Sports Hall of Fame trophy sparkles on display behind the bar.When asked how many halls of fame he has been inducted into, Hale shrugs.“I don’t know. Five or six,” he says. “If you live long enough, they give you something.”Hale grew up around sports. The Cleveland native moved to New York City in fourth grade after his father, a marine engineer, got a job working on ships in Staten Island. The pair regularly attended Major League ball games to see the Dodgers, Yankees and Giants.“Sports have always been a huge part of my life,” Hale says. “If I didn’t have sports, I’d be in jail.”Hale always wanted to be a football player — a long shot for a 117-pound boy in a high school of some 2,500 students. He recalls the day his football coach escorted him down the hall to the cross-country coach’s classroom.“‘You’re going to get killed out there,’” the football coach told Hale, who ultimately decided that with his lanky frame, he was better suited to be a runner.After graduation, Hale enlisted in the Navy. He served as a medic at Corpus Christi Naval Air Station in Texas in the early 1950s, treating Marines wounded in the Korean War.To boost morale, Hale collaborated with an electrician and built a radio station to broadcast music, interviews and the daily menu throughout the hospital.“Available for lunch today is… Crap,” Hale would joke on air before dedicating a song to a patient or staff member. “To the blonde nurse in Ward 7 who all the guys are in love with — this song is for you.”“They loved it,” Hale says, grinning. “That’s when I knew I wanted to be a radio announcer.”Hale returned to New York and began attending the School of Radio Technique with instructors who worked at NBC.In addition to school and his student-training at Radio City, Hale kept busy with different side jobs. He worked at a grocery store, a publishing house, the Paramount Theatre as an usher and, on Saturday mornings, the zoo, cleaning monkey cages.Hale’s connections with NBC eventually added some glamour to his life, introducing him to the big shots of that radio era such as Bert Parks and Mike Wallace. Hale says he once bowled with the drummer, Buddy Rich, and even went on a couple dates with some of The Rockettes.“I had hair then,” Hale says. “I was living the Broadway life, and I was going to be a big star in New York.”Hale observed in the 1950s that stardom involved appearing on television — still one of technology’s latest innovations. He expressed interest in becoming a TV broadcaster to NBC’s chief announcer, who told Hale he would need some experience if he ever wanted to break into that scene.Desperate for a shot, Hale learned of a new TV station in a city he’d never heard of before — Bangor, Maine.“They told me it was pretty far north,” Hale says, to which he responded with the question: “Hudson Bay-north?”Not quite Canada-bound, Hale drove his old Chevy some 500 miles to interview for a position at Maine’s first television station — WABI-TV — in 1953. He was hired as a staff announcer for WABI radio with the promise he would eventually get on screen.“I was fascinated with Bangor,” Hale says of his transition from the Big Apple. “I thought there were bears behind every tree.”Hale balanced his radio duties with occasional television work, which consisted exclusively of live commercial breaks for the first year. At the time, everything on TV was shot live in black and white with scripts written on cue cards.Hale chuckles while recalling his first on-air assignment — a commercial for Viner’s Music Company — in which he unknowingly held an album cover upside-down.“In the old days, what you put on the air was what you put on the air,” Hale says. “There was no taking it back.”Hale’s chance at redemption came when he was selected for the Harvard beer commercials. He would pour himself a glass of the beer and hold it up, as if he were about to take a drink. Hale says this lasted about a week until the Women’s Christian Temperance Union arrived at WABI with picket signs, threatening to boycott the station over “that young boy on television selling beer.”George Hale began working for WABI-Bangor in 1953. PHOTO COURTESY OF RICK MCHALE“I was 21, but I looked 16,” Hale says.He mimics his boss’s reaction to the controversy: “‘Good God, can’t you grow a beard?’” he asked Hale before reassigning him to commercials selling public finance loans.Hale planned to stay in Maine for two years and then return to the city. That changed in 1957 when he convinced WABI to start broadcasting University of Maine football games.“All of the sudden, with no great planning or effort, I became ‘the sports guy,’” Hale says.Hale’s roots in Maine deepened when he married a Brewer native and started raising children. He was absorbed in his work, arriving at the station at 5 a.m. and staying until 11 p.m., despite his boss’s pleas for him to leave.Eventually, Hale was traveling regularly across the country to broadcast play-by-play commentary of UMaine football, basketball and baseball games on the radio and television. Sometimes, he traveled by plane. Other times, he caught a ride on the team bus.“The most exciting thing was having the kids invite me out to pizza,” Hale says. “It was the little things that were special.”Most notably, Hale covered seven College World Series in Omaha, Neb., and the 1965 Tangerine Bowl in Orlando — UMaine’s only invitation to a national bowl.In October, UMaine celebrated the 50th anniversary of that Black Bears football team by hosting a reunion for those players. Hale was invited as a surprise guest speaker.“They were all excited I was still alive,” Hale says. “We all remembered each other.”Hale says he called out a few familiar faces during his speech: “Ronnie,” he said, “the campus police are still looking for you.”Hale smiles. “The room just erupted,” he says.Hale also mentored aspiring sports announcers who graduated from UMaine and have since climbed into national prominence, including Bill Patrick of ESPN and the USA Network, Gary Thorne — ESPN’s lead NHL play-by-play announcer — and Steve Martin — the voice of the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets.“George had opportunities to jump into higher markets,” Cashman says. “His loyalty to WABI and Bangor is unparalleled.”Hale still appears on WABI-Channel 5 every Friday night to discuss sports at the professional, college and high school levels.While Hale has become synonymous with Maine sports, he resents the label “sportscaster.” He also worked as a disc jockey and a political reporter, interviewing politicians such as Margaret Chase Smith and Sen. Joseph McCarthy as well as musicians such as Little Richard.“I’m a broadcaster,” Hale says. “I did it all. Back then, you had to.”Cashman, 37, says that, like countless others, he grew up listening to Hale.“People who are twice my age can also say they’ve grown up with George,” Cashman says. “It’s a comforting feeling to turn on the TV and still see him there.”While Hale never became a football player or a star in New York City, he has achieved celebrity status across Maine. He says strangers still stop him on the street, wanting to discuss politics or a high school tournament from decades ago.“You don’t realize how much you touch people,” Hale says. “I still like when people come up and say hello.”Hale is the only Maine media representative who has won the Eastern College Athletic Conference Media Award, and he is the only non-graduate of the University of Maine to receive the Black Bear Award. He has been named Maine’s Sportscaster of the Year multiple times and is in numerous halls of fame, including the Maine Broadcasting Hall of Fame and the New England Basketball Hall of Fame.But fame has not gone to Hale’s head.“I’m really not very talented, I’m just focused,” Hale says. “The only difference between you and me is that I have a microphone.”Hale walks out of the restaurant, appearing unfazed by the stares he attracts. When the door closes behind him, several diners lean in over their tables and whisper:“Was that George Hale?”last_img read more

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