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A Broadcasting Legend
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Roy Leonard's broadcasting career spanned more than 50 years, including 31 at Chicago's WGN. He signed off from radio back in 1998, but now the Chicago icon is back with a new blog. We'll learn more about it, and get some stories from his stellar career. Plus, NBA talk with legendary Philadelphia/San Francisco Warriors player and coach Al Attles, and Jackie Kallen - one of boxing's first and most successful female managers.
Episode Segments:
 
Sports and Torts: A Conversation with Roy Leonard

According to Roy he interviewed more than 5000 politicians and celebrities during his 31 years at WGN. We’ll hear about a few of them, including one in the late 50’s with future President John Kennedy. He also talks about his updated website, and why he decided to start blogging again.
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Sports and Torts: Boxing’s Jackie Kallen

The First Lady of Boxing tells us how she got involved with the sport, and how she built her stable of champions. We discuss how the MMA is hurting the sport of boxing, and what it will take for the sport to make a comeback.
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Sports and Torts: Al Attles

Al scored 17 points against the Knicks on March 2, 1962. Of course his teammate Wilt Chamberlain scored 100, so Al’s achievement is somewhat overlooked, He talks about that historic game, his transition from player to coach, and leading Rick Barry and the Warriors to the 1975 NBA Title.
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Guest(s) Appearing on this Episode
Roy Leonard
Midwesterners know the name, Roy Leonard, well. For more than 30 years he dominated the airwaves on Saturday mornings with ratings on WGN that were higher than the next four stations combined. His weekday shows were also top rated as he interviewed celebrities, authors, politicians, musicians and sports figures, who made a stop at the WGN studios a must. Starting in 1985 he became host of WGN-TV’s “Family Classics” after the sudden passing of Frazier Thomas. He hosted many WGN-TV Specials and was Film and Theatre critic on the nightly news. Roys’ career started in New England. After attending Emerson College and a stint in The United States Air Force and Armed Forces Radio, he found a job and his life’s companion in the small town of Framingham, just outside of Boston. While working at the local radio station, he was approached by the casting director of the local theatre group to appear in their next show. Not only did Roy appear in that and future shows, but he married the casting director, Sheila Marie Finn in the Fall of 1953. The Leonards began to raise a family and Roy got his first job in a major market, Boston. It was here that he honed his skills in news reporting and developed interviewing techniques on both Channels 5 & 7 and daily radio shows on WHDH, WNAC, and the Yankee Network. In 1967 WGN, Chicago, came calling and the Leonard family, which by then included Sheila and six sons, moved to the Midwest where Roy soon became a top radio and TV personality. His love of theatre prompted an annual London Theatre Tour, where listeners were offered a week of sightseeing, theatre and shopping. This led to New York Theatre weekends, trips to the Shaw & Stratford Festivals in Ontario, excursions to France, Norway, The Netherlands, Hong Kong, Thailand and The Soviet Union, where Roy broadcast his morning radio show from Moscow. Leonard retired from daily broadcast duties at the end of 1998 but continued Family Classics and occasional radio and TV commercials. His sons all live in and around Chicago and eight grandchildren see their grandparents regularly. In the Fall of 2010, Sheila suffered a severe fall and slowly developed Parkinson’s Disease and Dementia. She went into Hospice Care at the Mather Life Center in Evanston early in 2012 and passed away on March 13th. Roy lives in The Mather, an upscale Continuing Care Retirement Community and keeps his web site up to date by sharing with long time fans as well as new readers, his thoughts on current world and local happenings as well as his struggle with an ailing spouse and how to make life as happy and bearable as possible.

Roy's Website and Blog

 
Al Attles
Alvin A. "Al" Attles Jr. (born November 7, 1936 in Newark, New Jersey) is an American retired professional basketball player and coach. He is a graduate of Weequahic High School in Newark and North Carolina A&T State University.[1] Attles played eleven seasons for the National Basketball Association's San Francisco Warriors (which were called the Philadelphia Warriors until 1962) beginning in 1960. He was a role player on the 1964 Warriors team (with Wilt Chamberlain, Guy Rodgers) that made the NBA Finals and eventually lost the series to the Boston Celtics four games to one. He also played on the Warriors' 1967 team that lost to Chamberlain's 68-13 Philadelphia 76ers in a closely played six-game final series. Attles later became one of the first African-American coaches in the NBA, when he succeeded George Lee as Warriors head coach in 1970. Attles guided the Rick Barry-led Warriors to the 1975 NBA championship, making him the second African American coach to win an NBA title (the first was Bill Russell). Attles coached the Warriors until 1983, compiling a 557-518 regular season record (588-548 overall in 14 seasons with 6 playoff appearances). His number 16 is retired by the Golden State Warriors and he attends every Warriors home game.

Al's Career Stats

 
Jackie Kallen
After 33 years in the boxing world as publicist and then manager, Jackie Kallen has been dubbed The First Lady of Boxing. Having managed six champions, she was twice nominated as Manager of the Year. She was recently awarded the prestigious Aileen Eaton Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Michigan Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. Her life story inspired the Paramount film Against the Ropes starring Meg Ryan. Kallen was Associate Producer of the film and made a cameo appearance. A former journalist, TV host and radio personality in her native Detroit, Kallen is a successful motivational speaker who travels the country addressing conventions, women’s health groups and college audiences. She is the author of Hit Me With Your Best Shot. She was the Den Mother on the first season of The Contender on NBC with Sylvester Stallone and Sugar Ray Leonard. She talks about women entering a man’s world, juggling a family with a career, how to tackle women’s health issues and the many ways to deal with aging. Now living in Los Angeles, she is very active in charities that deal with battered and abused women and the homeless. Kallen has been named Youth Sports Coordinator for the LA County Sheriff Department. She goes around to various areas where there are kids-at-risk and sets up boxing gyms. She also goes to schools and churches, speaking to kids and urging them to quit the gangs and go to the gym. She also produces boxing events for various charities around the country to raise money and awareness. Kallen is currently writing her second book and is co-producing a boxing film with Sugar Ray Leonard. A mother of two sons and grandmother of three, Kallen was one of the first females to succeed in the male-dominated world of professional boxing. She served as commissioner of the International Female Boxing Association, mentors many young women hoping to work in the boxing industry, and has won numerous awards and honors. She is a role model to people everywhere who wish to beat the odds and achieve success.

Jackie's Website