Archive for June, 2005
From even a young age, Michael Drew Shaw dreamed of a career in radio.
“When I was 12 years old, I knew what I wanted to do,” he said.
But what began as a career in broadcasting has since developed into being a filmmaker, writer, producer and entrepreneur.
Describing his career as “checkered,” Shaw has dabbled in nearly every area of media and communication.
“I have all these different pieces on the board, but they’re not all the same and what I’m trying to do lately is step back and get focused on one idea,” he said. “It’s just trying to plow new ground and try things that haven’t been done before.”
Shaw is president and co-founder of American Retrospects/NewStar Productions, located in Toledo.
It is through the multitude of projects Shaw takes on that he has become a modern-day Renaissance man, said Janice Weber, director of operations for NewStar Productions.
A distinguished man in appearance, Shaw looks the part of an entrepreneur, sitting tall with legs crossed and a formal air about him.
He is currently working on several projects including an upscale entertainment venue called Fantasy, to be built in the Perrysburg area.
“There is not a lot to do in the Toledo area in terms of a really cool night club or place where you can dress up and dance to a live band,” he said. “We’re trying to fill that void and give people a place where they can go to.”
He is also working on a documentary titled “Miracle on the Maumee,” about the design and construction of the cable-stayed bridge. Shaw is also leading an effort to build a visitor’s center as part of the Marina District Project. The film will be shown on PBS and The Discovery and History channels.
Shaw may be best known for his radio show “Dream Warriors,” which began in 1999 as 60-second mini-biographies and has since developed into a PBS television program, to premiere this month. Shaw said he hopes to have the show air nationwide on radio also, but is still looking for a sponsor, he said.
Shaw and his co-workers try to develop profiles on a diverse range of people.
“We want to prove that entrepreneurs are not just Bill Gates or Oprah,” he said.
Entrepreneurs have always been of interest to Shaw.
“I was always fascinated and motivated by what made them tick, what put them on the line,” he said. “I began reading about entrepreneurs and in every case there was something unexpected that happened to inspire people from all walks of life. They’re all interrelated to some degree or another.”
The first program will profile Worthington Steel Industries, Shaw said, followed by a profile on Tom Kiser, of Professional Supply Incorporated, located in Fremont.
Shaw published a book, “Slider, the Leo Butterburger Story,” released in 2001. He is now talking with 20th Century Fox and several other sponsors about making a film based on the book. The character Leo has a local connection, Shaw said, as he is named after the White Tower hamburger.
With such a resume, some may wonder why Shaw has never branched out to work in New York or elsewhere.
Born and raised in Toledo, Shaw said he has never had the desire to leave permanently.
“I didn’t need to go to major markets to be successful and years later it turns out that’s the truth,” he said.
Staying in Toledo has never been as issue for Shaw, said friend Joe Perlaky, project manager for alternative energy systems at the University of Toledo.
“He’s very much committed to Northwest Ohio, both in his projects and in his family life,” he said. “He’s a good asset and a good person to have in Toledo.”
Despite numerous current projects, work has been difficult for Shaw, as he lost his son Stephan Michael Shaw recently.
“Needless to say it was a parent’s worst nightmare,” he said. “Under the circumstances it has been very difficult. I’m trying to get back to my work and my projects with more enthusiasm.”
This loss has been another learning experience for Shaw.
“I’ve had challenges all my life and I’ve had to learn to never give up,” he said. “And this is the biggest challenge I’ve had by far.”
But it’s through such tragedy that Shaw said he has plans to help others.
Since the loss of his son, Shaw has had trouble sleeping and during a restless night he came up with the idea for a meeting place for people with insomnia. He has since purchased an Internet domain and may develop it into an informational and self help Web site.
Few have such enthusiasm as Shaw, said longtime friend and past co-worker, Bob Martz, president of Martz Productions.
“His desire to create is over and above what other people do,” he said.
Shaw possesses many qualities that aid him in his work, Perlaky said.
“He’s extremely creative and very tenacious and a multi-tasker,” he said. “He likes to have several things going on at once and he follows a project to the end.”
Independence has been a favorite part of his job, Shaw said.
“I don’t work for a corporation, I don’t work for the man,” he said. “It feels good to be in control to some degree of my own career destiny.”
Some words of advice Shaw has to entrepreneurs are foremost, “don’t panic.”
“I think you shouldn’t necessarily equate success with material objectives,” he said.
”Don’t fall in love with your idea whether it’s a project or a concept because people will shoot holes in it.”
There are a few things Shaw said he would still like to do.
Shaw has written commercial themes for Publix, Burger King and the MGM Grand Hotel but has yet to write a hit song. Shaw said he also desires to publish short stories.
“I always try to have some element of the project make some contribution,” he said.
“Literally a big part of the company is to inspire people to pursue their dreams.”
COLUMBUS — With weary eyes and a tired smile, Tina Kielmeyer laughed as she moved a Christmas tree from behind a chair in her office.
Kielmeyer, the recently appointed interim administrator of the Ohio Bureau of Worker’s Compensation, did not want her mom to see in a newspaper photograph that she had yet to take down Christmas decorations. But in recent weeks, Kielmeyer has simply not had time to put away the tree.
“In the past two weeks, it’s just been non-stop working with the attorney general, working with the inspector general, working with the auditor’s office and at the same time, I’ve got to keep my 2,600 employees focused on BWC,” Kielmeyer said. “Taking over the bureau on a good day is a tremendous task, I mean, huge shoes to fill. Taking it over during at a time where we’re going through a situation like this … is an absolutely phenomenal task.”
Kielmeyer was appointed administrator of the bureau June 3 after former administrator James Conrad resigned in the midst of a growing controversy involving the bureau’s investment portfolio.
The bureau has admitted to losing $215 million in a Bermuda hedge fund managed by MDL Capital Management of Pittsburgh and $4.8 million in two American Express Asset Management funds.
The bureau is also being investigated by several state agencies for investing $50 million in two rare coin funds managed by local coin dealer Tom Noe. Noe’s lawyer has said that up to $12 million is missing from the funds.
But for Kielmeyer, who has been with the bureau for 23 years, the controversy and negative publicity is nothing new.
She said the recent controversy reminds her of controversy 10 years ago, when the bureau was constantly derided in the media for being unable to pay providers or for paying providers too much.
“I was here back in the days when BWC was on the front page and it was never a good thing,” she said. “We had constant changes of administrators. We did not have a good business model for sure. We were not focused on our customers … when we were in the newspaper, it was because we couldn’t pay providers or everyone remembers the time we paid everybody twice and made USA Today.”
However, Kielmeyer’s experience in the bureau has raised doubts among some officials about her ability to assume control of the bureau and about her involvement in the investment losses.
Ohio Senator Teresa Fedor, D-Toledo, said she questions Kielmeyer’s ability to do her job because Kielmeyer served in the bureau when all the money was lost.
“I don’t have confidence in her leadership at the helm,” Fedor said. “I consider Jim Conrad the gatekeeper of corruption, and now we have the assistant gatekeeper of corruption.”
Kielmeyer had been serving as chief operating officer of the bureau and assistant administrator to Conrad since April 2004, and she was one of the first high-level bureau employees to be informed about the MDL loss.
Kielmeyer said one of her employees came to her with information about the MDL loss after having a conversation with other low-level bureau employees in the investment department.
“The nurse called me I believe the same day she learned about it and she told me that little bit of information, and she said, ‘I don’t know who I should’ve told,’” Kielmeyer said. “So I called Mr. Conrad and I left him the message … I think that once I contacted Mr. Conrad, he took all appropriate and responsible steps to get special counsel [and] begin the investigations.”
But Kielmeyer said as chief operating officer, she handled more day-to-day operational concerns and insurance claims and was not involved in the bureau’s investment department.
“This investment problem is in one part of BWC,” Kielmeyer said. “It does not impact our operations. It does not impact our insurance business. I have never overseen the investment department. Like most employees at BWC, I hear the updates of how the portfolio is performing when they give it to the oversight commission and that’s probably the extent of my involvement.”
Since Conrad’s resignation, Ohio Attorney General Jim Petro filed a lawsuit against MDL Chairman Mark Lay to recover the lost $215 million on the grounds the hedge-fund contract was fraudulent and evaluated exclusively by Terrence Gasper, the former chief investment officer of the bureau who was forced to resign because of the loss.
The bureau is being investigated by several state agencies for its investments with Noe.
Though some have questioned Kielmeyer’s appointment, the former bureau COO is not without her supporters.
Tom Hayes, director of the governor’s management review team, a group put together by Governor Bob Taft to investigate all of the bureau’s investments, said he has been impressed with Kielmeyer’s ability to handle a “very difficult situation.” Hayes has worked closely with Kielmeyer in recent weeks to look into the bureau’s investments.
“Tina has shown a remarkable ability to come into a very difficult situation and get things done,” Hayes said. “She’s kind of in the middle of the pinball machine.”
Hayes’ team will be instrumental in selecting a permanent bureau administrator. Hayes said after a search is conducted, his team will interview all the candidates and present a recommendation to the governor, who will appoint the next administrator. Hayes said the scope of the search was not yet determined, but an independent search firm might be hired to aid in the process.
Hayes said Kielmeyer would have to express interest in being the permanent administrator if she wanted to be considered.
Kielmeyer would not say whether she was interested in removing her interim status, but she said she would give “thoughtful consideration” to keeping the job if it was offered to her.
“I’m focused on what I need to do to help address this investment situation but also to keep BWC’s insurance operations focused and moving in the direction our customers need it to move,” she said.
Kielmeyer’s main task in the coming weeks will be to handle intense scrutiny from the media and from government and independent organizations.
All of the bureau’s investments are being evaluated by Governor Taft’s three-person management review team and Ohio Inspector General Tom Charles. The bureau has also hired Ennis Knupp & Associates, an independent investment consulting firm from Chicago, to look into its investment portfolio. The management review team is scheduled to present its initial findings to the Governor on July 18, and Ennis Knupp will complete its analysis sometime after that.
Additionally, Democratic legislators are proposing a bipartisan committee be formed to look into the bureau’s operations. Fedor and Representative Peter Ujvagi, D-Toledo, said they support the creation of such a committee.
Kielmeyer said she would support a bipartisan committee.
“BWC welcomes the scrutiny that it’s getting right now, and we welcome the recommendations that can be made,” she said. “We will implement those that the General Assembly and the Governor feel are appropriate.”
Senator Jeff Wagoner, D-Sycamore, said he does not feel forming another committee to investigate the bureau is necessary.
“As far as another committee, let’s see what the Inspector General finds when it’s all said and done,” Wagoner said. “The Inspector General is doing his job, so let’s let him do his job and let the chips fall as they may.”
The ‘lion’s mouth’
With multiple investigations proceeding and public records requests by media still pending, Kielmeyer said more losses might be discovered. She said until she receives a final report from Ennis Knupp on the status of the bureau’s investments, she cannot say all the lost money has been discovered.
“When I receive that information, that is when I’ll be able to tell you with 100 percent certainty that there are no other situations,” she said.
Hayes, who has been looking into the investment situation in preparation for Ennis Knupp’s analysis, said he expects the controversy to die down in the next couple weeks, though media investigations might reveal losses in contracts previously terminated by the bureau.
“As far as active accounts, we’re confident that we’ve identified at least most of it,” he said.
In any case, Kielmeyer remains a busy woman thrust into the spotlight. And the Christmas tree remains in her office.
“[Kielmeyer is] a solid person; she does a great job,” Hayes said. “She’s stuck her head in the lion’s mouth and hopefully she’ll be able to withdraw it.”
Toledo is a town of sports diversity, where the fans’ attention is drawn in a thousand different directions. Still, there are uniting facets, teams, players and personalities that define the scope and scale of our fandimonium.
Here is a list of the 25 most influential people on the Toledo sports scene; a snapshot of who defines us, who entertains us, who informs us and who champions our city.
1. Joe Napoli
Toledo Mud Hens
As the driving force behind “the world famous” Toledo Mud Hens, Joe Napoli has utilized his position as a means for greater things for Toledo. His greatest achievement will forever be the hand he played in helping create what Newsweek called “the best minor league park in the country,” Fifth Third Field. Napoli has ensured that the crowds keep coming downtown, spawning a community around the ballpark the city desperately needed. He’s done such a great job running the team, the Toledo Storm begged to be taken over and run the way the Hens are.
2. Mike O’Brien
Athletic Director, UT
In three short years, O’Brien has hemmed in a budget deficit that was spiraling out of control, placed in motion plans for a major overhaul of Savage Hall, and helped place Toledo athletics on the national map. He’s done such a great job, he’s had two job offers in the past month. Overseeing an NCAA Division I program is no easy task, yet O’Brien has helped the University grow in national prominence in a short time. Through on-field success and national television exposure the Rockets football team could appear on TV 17 times between 2003 and the end of this season.
3. Judd Silverman
Tournament Director, Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic Presented by Kroger
It sounds like a Cinderella story from “Caddyshack”: Twenty-six -year-old caddie in the spring of 1982 borrows a jacket and pitches a golf tournament in his hometown of Toledo to then-LPGA Commissioner John Laupheimer. It’s in the hole! Twenty one years later, the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic Presented by Kroger is one of the most popular stops on the LPGA tour, with a total purse in excess of $1 million and nearly $4 million given to local charities.
4. Edward Scrutchins
Director of Athletics and City League Commissioner, Toledo Public Schools
Scrutchins has been responsible for the spectrum of all the athletic happenings of Toledo Public Schools and all competition in the Toledo City League since 1986. He’s well respected and it’s never in doubt who’s in charge, but most importantly, he’s a role model and mentor to area athletes.
5. Tom Amstutz
Head Football Coach, University of Toledo
The University of Toledo has appeared on national television 10 times the past two seasons, and has the potential for seven more in 2005. When the nation sees Toledo athletics, they see Toledo Tom. Most of the time he’s on the winning end, and that brings pride, prestige and prominence to the University, alumni and the city.
6. Frank Corsoe
Sports Editor, The Blade
New to Toledo from Dayton, where he had baseball Hall of Fame writer Hal McCoy on his staff, it’s Corsoe who determines the lead sports story in your daily newspaper. Too much Tigers and not enough Indians? Girl’s sports buried? Sick of Notre Dame? Talk to Frank.
7. Jimmy Jackson
All-City and a state championship at Macomber, All-American at Ohio State, a distinguished 13-year NBA career, Jackson plays for the Phoenix Suns and is arguably the greatest basketball player in Toledo history. Jimmy remains a Toledoan, and has invested heavily and prominently in his hometown. He’s also the most prominent Toledoan to “make it” in professional sports, and serves as an inspiration to all local hoopsters with NBA dreams.
8. Walter (Chip) Carstensen
President, Buckeye CableSystem
True, the idea belonged to Alan Block, but as president of Buckeye CableSystem, Carstensen is responsible for ensuring that the all-Toledo, all-the-time sports channel reaches approximately 134,000 subscribers. Though just over a year old, BCSN has had a tangible impact on the local athletic scene.
9. Norm Wamer
Program Director WLQR
He not only co-hosts the only local Toledo sports talk program, Wamer also determines what else you hear on Toledo’s only all-sports-talk station WLQR (1470 AM). Be it Tigers, Mudhens, pro sports or ESPN talk radio, Norm makes sure The Ticket is your ticket in Northwest Ohio.
10. Ben Williams
Former Scott High School Basketball coach
He retired in 1998, but after his 24-season career, which includes 11 City League Championships and a state title, Williams is still a looming figure not only at Scott High School, but in the local community as well.
11. Mike Miller
Vice President/General Manager, Toledo Storm
Some would say Miller has an easy job selling hockey to Toledo (Detroit is only 45 minutes away), while others would say the job is more difficult (Detroit is only 45 minutes away). Miller has recently staved off extinction of the team. He has fielded a competitive team, despite crumbling accommodations.
12. Dick Cromwell
Head Football Coach/AD, St. Francis High School
With two state championships and 12 state play-off appearances, Cromwell is the dean of City League Football coaches. Just because he’s a member of the Ohio High School Coaches Association Hall of Fame, doesn’t mean you should write him off as past his prime, as the Knights are as competitive as ever on the gridiron.
13. Rich Arbinger
Head Baseball Coach, Start High School
In 30 seasons, Arbinger has amassed a 685-185 record, the fifth best in Ohio High School baseball history. With 14 district championships and two state championships, Start baseball is truly a dynasty.
14. Rob Powers
Sports Director, WTVG-13
Never mind awards (Rob has received an Emmy and has been awarded five First Place Ohio Associated Press Awards, including the Ohio Best Sportscaster Award) or the personality (Powers is so entertaining and engaging he fills in the anchor chair), the Power Pack is must-see TV on Friday and Saturday nights for high school sports.
15. Ed Heintschel
Basketball Coach, St. John’s Jesuit High School
Coaching the Titan hoopsters for 26 years, Heintschel won 11 City League championships, though he lacks a state title to complete his resume. He’s also sent a number of players to Division I schools, furthering their careers while cementing him as a coach who develops talent.
16. Stan Joplin
Men’s Basketball Coach, University of Toledo
Sure, half the town wanted him gone after last season. But Joplin has a year left on his contract, perhaps his career. He has the second most wins (153) in Rocket hoops history. His nine years have also helped restore the program to respectability after a long drought.
17. Jim Tichy
Sports Director, WNWO-24
The dean of local sportscasters with more than 30-years at Channel 24, Tichy is rock solid and has received countless awards. He is one of two broadcasters enshrined in the City League Athletic Hall of Fame and remains a staple of WNWO.
19. Leroy Bates
Basketball Coach, Libbey High School
Libbey high school has a lot to cheer for, as Bates has built a program as competitive as any surrounding school in the area. With 13 years of superior teams, Bates has a program that attracts legendary players, and is well on his way to creating a legendary program.
18. Devin Vargas
The Glass City’s Olympic hero has turned his attention to beating the hell out of people for a paycheck and is doing so in his own backyard. Vargas has also moved into the promotional side of the game, as his company, ‘Devistatin’ Promotions,’ hopes to make Toledo a town full of fight fans.
19. Dan Cummins
Sports Director, WTOL-11
The face of Big Board Friday Night, Cummins has been with WTOL for 25 years and is perhaps the most-seen face of all local sports anchors, as Channel 11 regularly wins the ratings war.
21. Arthur Hills
Arthur Hills/Steve Forrest and Associates
A world-class golf course architect, Hills has designed more than 160 courses around the world and in our backyard including Brandywine Country Club and The Legacy. His team is also called in to get a course into shape for PGA and USGA Championships and has done work on Inverness (in preparation for U.S. Senior Open), and Oakland Hills Country Club (in preparation for U.S. Open and Ryder Cup).
22. Jamie Farr
Actor, Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic Presented by Kroger
Look at it this way; if it weren’t for Jamie Farr, the LPGA would play at the Danny Thomas Tournament. Farr has been a tireless supporter of not only the LPGA, but is the main reason the Mud Hens are world famous, thanks to his prominent wearing of Hen
memorabilia on M*A*S*H.
23. Michael Rickard,
Athletic Director, Owens Community College
Michael Rickard has served the Owens athletic programs full-time for 20 years. He was named “Athletic Director of the Year” for 1995-1996 and 1999-2000 by the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference (OCCAC). Under his guidance the program has thrived and grown in stature and numbers.
24. Christine Brennan
Columnist, USA Today/Author
Granted, Christine Brennan writes for a national newspaper, but this Ottawa Hills native has frequently dropped Toledo sports stories into her column. She’s also gracious with her time, returning to the area to lend her name to worthy causes.
25. Bruce Gradkowski
Quarterback, University of Toledo
As he enters his senior season, Gradkowski is on the Heisman watch and NFL Draft radar, making him the highest profile football player to emerge from the University of Toledo since the early ’70s. If all goes well, Gradkowski may one day join Randy Moss, Chad Pennington and Ben Roethlisberger as NFL superstars from the MAC.