Categotry Archives: Business

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Al Lapin Jr.

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Categories: Business

alapin.jpgFor entrepreneur Al Lapin Jr., the sweet smell of success came in blueberry, boysenberry and maple flavors.
In 1958, Lapin and his brother Jerry pooled together $25,000 and founded the International House of Pancakes. The blue-roofed chain of 24-hour restaurants offered breakfast staples like bacon and eggs paired with buttermilk, silver dollar or “Rooty Tooty Fresh and Fruity” pancakes.
Lapin turned that one IHOP in Toluca Lake, Calif., into a franchising empire of more than 1,100 restaurants throughout the United States and Canada. In the 1960s, IHOP acquired smaller eateries like Orange Julius and The Original House of Pies.
Occasionally, Lapin’s business sense went awry. The former president of the International Franchise Association lost money on ventures like Pizza Playhouse, a service that delivered pizza and videos; he declared bankruptcy in 1989.
The New York native studied filmmaking at the University of Southern California. In recent years, he served as the executive producer on the 2001 movie, “Race to Space,” starring James Woods and Annabeth Gish.
Lapin died on June 16 of cancer. He was 76.

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Gerry McNeil

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Categories: Business, Sports

Gerard “Gerry” McNeil, a former goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens, died on June 17. Cause of death was not released. He was 78.
The Quebec City native was only 17 when he attended his first training camp in 1943. Starting with the Cincinnati Mohawks and the Montreal Royals, he honed his skills during six minor league seasons, and was named the most valuable player three years in a row.
McNeil replaced Canadiens’ Hall of Famer Bill Durnan in the midst of the 1950 playoffs and backstopped the team to the Stanley Cup finals in 1951 and 1952. During the 1952-53 season, he led Montreal to a Stanley Cup win.
One of hockey’s last ambidextrous goalies, McNeil lost his starting position at the end of the 1953-54 season to Jacques Plante, a young superstar who became the first goalie to don a face mask and skate behind the net to stop a puck. During the Stanley Cup finals against Detroit that year, Plante was pulled and veteran McNeil was placed on the ice to help the team win the next two games and force a seventh.
The seventh game would bring about McNeil’s downfall. In overtime, he allowed an easy shot to get past him. The missed goal, which earned Detroit the Stanley Cup, crushed McNeil’s confidence. He bailed out of the sport for a season to teach junior hockey, but eventually returned to Montreal as Plante’s back-up.
Although McNeil was part of the Canadiens when the team won the Stanley Cup in the 1956-57 season, he never again played as an NHL starter. After retiring from hockey, McNeil spent 20 years working at the Seagram Distilleries.
Career Statistics From the Internet Hockey Database

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Jack McClelland

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Categories: Business, Media, Military

Unlike other publishers, John G. McClelland was willing to lose money on talented writers. He often said his company, McClelland & Stewart, published “authors not books.”
Born in Toronto, McClelland served as a torpedo boat captain in the Royal Navy during World War II. When he returned to Canada in 1946, he began working for his father’s publishing business. McClelland became president 15 years later and transformed McClelland & Stewart into a prestigious literary house by publishing and marketing Canadian authors like Alice Munro, Michael Ondaatje, Mordecai Richler, Pierre Berton and Margaret Atwood. He also established a first novel contest in 1977 that offered an annual $50,000 prize.
“Jack McClelland was daring, innovative, unconventional, smart and savvy, and a publisher extraordinaire. He put Canadian authors and Canadian publishing on the map. In a way, he set the stage for so much of what Canadian publishing is today,” said Ellen Seligman, publisher and vice president of McClelland & Stewart.
Despite its publishing successes, the company struggled financially against the giant American and European houses. In the late 1960s, McClelland & Stewart had to accept financial aid from the Ontario provincial government just to stay afloat. He sold the company in 1985 and launched a small literary agency, which foundered.
McClelland died on June 14 of heart failure. He was 81.

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Joseph L. Gormley

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Categories: Business, Government, Law

Joseph L. Gormley, the retired chief of chemistry and toxicology for the FBI, died on June 6 from complications of cancer. He was 90.
Born in Clinton, Mass., Gormley received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemistry from Boston College. In 1940, he moved to Washington D.C. and joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Gormley continued his academic pursuits, earning a law degree from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in forensic science from George Washington University.
He spent more than three decades with the FBI, investigating some of the agency’s most famous cases, including the Great Brinks Robbery in 1950 and the 1964 murders of three young civil rights workers, which became known as the “Mississippi Burning” case. He served as an expert witness in numerous trials, testifying on his knowledge of chemistry, toxicology and arson. For more than 20 years, Gormley supervised a program that developed the use of lie detector tests for investigative purposes.
He retired from the FBI in 1973, then directed the Maine State Police Crime Laboratory and worked in the research and training divisions of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. The former president of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Forensic Scientists, Gormley also taught at GW and the University of Maryland.
In his spare time, Gormley fathered nine children and built a small side business recreating well-known perfumes and fragrances. He used the perfumery profits to pay for his children’s educations.

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Mose Frink

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Categories: Business

Maurice “Mose” Frink, the founder of a national floral chain, died on June 1 of natural causes. He was 85.

Frink and his brother Herbert were born into the floral world — their father, Warren, owned Rainbow Florists & Greenhouse. During World War II, Mose took a break from the family business to serve with the U.S. Army Air Corps.

After the war ended, the Frink brothers built a greenhouse of their own. In 1967, they founded Flowerama in Waterloo, Iowa. Within five years, the company began franchising into local malls and shopping centers. In the 1990s, Flowerama became a major presence in the floral industry by converting its mall stores into 100 freestanding shops in 27 states.

A member of the Society of Iowa Florists and Growers and the Society of American Florists, Mose Frink also spent many years helping Boy Scout troops with horticultural projects.

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