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When not in Rome...Obama and Gray luminaries go Italian in Bethesda

June 19, 2011

Georgetown wasn't the only destination for government bigwigs over Fathers Day weekend. Bethesda Row, which is almost neck ‘n’ neck with Georgetown for sporting the most Italian restaurants, got its fair share of luminaries, too.

U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. and his wife dined at Assaggi Mozzarella Bar on Saturday night.  They shared a buffalo mozzarella platter. Both had risotto with lobster.

Outside on the patio, the soon-to-be chair of the D.C. Arts and Humanities Commission, Judith Terra, dined on lasagne.

On Father’s Day, Italian ambassador Giulio Terzi di Sant’Agata, his wife and two children had a light lunch at Assaggi.  They all shared the mozzarella platter and a platter of the dried cured meats.

Assaggi Mozzarella Bar is at 4838 Bethesda Ave. in Bethesda. Tel. (301) 951-1988. Read more at www.assaggirestaurant.com.

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Over the River: Capitol File’s power play at Turnberry

June 9, 2011

Capitol File magazine had some of the influential and powerful scampering across the Potomac for its “2011 Power List” party at the luxury high-rise Turnberry Tower in Rosslyn Wednesday night.  The blue 26-story condo building is a place where residents can see Georgetown’s lighted freckles without a spy glass.  

Some notables have ever-so elaborate digs there.

For this “intimate celebration” of Cap File’s list of “gatekeepers, influencers and movers,” there was complimentary valet -- of course dahhlin’ -- for the 200 or so attendees at an event hosted by publisher Sarah Schaffer.  Entertainment powerhouse Robert Redford’s picture is the cover shot.

The editors explained their “Power List of Influencers to Watch” 30 picks this way:

“… those traditional lists, and the usual names that appear on them, somehow fail to adequately reflect whom the gatekeepers, influencers and movers really are. They fail to fully reflect the individuals who –- by their power and influence — make Washington, well, Washington…Capitol File presents a roster of those who meet this more elusive definition of power.”

Ezio Mattiace, president & CEO of Poltrona Frau/Arclinea Washington, Barbara Hawthorn who decorated a Turnberry Tower residence, and Channel 7 ABC anchor Leon Harris (Photo by: Natalia Janetti) Ezio Mattiace, president & CEO of Poltrona Frau/Arclinea Washington, Barbara Hawthorn who decorated a Turnberry Tower residence, and Channel 7 ABC anchor Leon Harris

So who made the cut?

ABC News’ Jake Tapper;  student loan businesswoman and philanthropist Catherine Reynolds, House Speaker John Boehner, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Daily Beast founder Tina Brown,  D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier, General Electric CEO Jeffrey ImmeltMichelle Obama’s stylist Meredith Koop and chief of staff Tina Tchen, Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington, the LivingSocial guys (Val Aleksenko, Eddie Frederick, Tim O’Shaughnessy and Aaron Batalion), Komi restaurant owner Johnny Monis, New Media Strategies Founder & CEO Pete Snyder, New York Times reporter Mark Leibovich, White House Press Secretary and Palisades resident Jay Carney, Atlantic Media Company’s VP of corporate and strategic communications Linda Douglass, and Meet the Press’s Executive Producer Betsy Fischer, Washington Wizard John Wall, speechwriter Ben Rhodes, Bipartisan Policy Center President Jason Grumet, strategist and superhostess Juleanna Glover, Washington Ballet dancer Sona Kharatian, Council of Economic Advisers member Cecilia Rouse, Center for American Progress COO Neera Tanden, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, and Earthecho International CEO Philippe Cousteau.

A view into Georgetown from over the river at the Turnberry Tower. (Photo by: Natalia Janetti) A view into Georgetown from over the river at the Turnberry Tower.

Speaking of Power + High Finances, Turnberry Tower is where Barbara Allbritton, executive VP of Allbritton Communications Co., and wife of Joe Allbritton, just bought a three-bedroom unit for $2.4 million, with a 518-foot balcony, according to the Washington Business Journal.

Marvin Bush, the youngest son of George H.W. Bush and brother of George W. Bush, plunked down $2.5 million for a three-bedroom condo last year.

Not invited?  Try this:  a low-life culprit pinched the invitation from our postal box on the porch.  


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Executive salaries increase with deficit at Georgetown Univ.

June 2, 2011

Georgetown University faced a $21,493,687 deficit in its operating budget in fiscal year 2010, reported Vox Populi, but salaries of the University's top coach and executives increased across the board. The highest salary by far, earned by basketball coach John Thompson III, ballooned to almost $2 million, while President Jack DeGioia earned about half that, garnering one-tenth the annual increase scored by Thompson. 

John Thompson's increase in his and seven of the other 15 highest salaries during fiscal year 2010 outpaced the 2.5 percent increase DeGioia recommended for regular faculty members in January 2010. The top five earners, according to tax filings:

  1. John Thompson III, Coach: $1,894,988 (+3.57%)
  2. John J. DeGioia, President: $911,918 (+0.03%)
  3. Howard J. Federoff, Executive VP, Health Sciences: $781,730 (+1.62%)
  4. Lawrence E. Kochard, Chief Investment Officer (former): $736,592 (+4.90%)
  5. Louis M. Weiner, Director, Lombardi Center: $633,238 (+0.06%)

Meanwhile, the Unversity's endowment grew by 12.5 percent to $1,007,299,044, about 95 percent of its value July 1, 2008.

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