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    Re: Huffington Post~Melinda Balllard's Father Passed Away

    Posted by Sharon on 2/17/10


    Once again, you have not only proven your lack of decorum and
    social graces; you have again proven you write without fact

    Although the jury awarded Melinda Ballard $32M, she ultimately
    never received that amount. And...the award had NOTHING to do
    with mold. The illnesses they experienced were not even part
    of the trial.

    It was solely for insurance bad faith.

    Please, RemDude, I urge you to show a little respect for the
    family who just lost a loved one, and do not post anymore
    bashings of Melinda on this thread.

    Drop it. Okay?


    On 2/17/10, Rem Dude wrote:
    > While you may champion Ms. Ballard, many do not. Her $32
    > million dollar award and the mirid of frivolous get-rich-
    > quick black toxic mold cases it spurred, resulted in the
    > insurance industry unilaterally capping mold claims. Now,
    > those who need to have mold removed from their home can no
    > longer afford to do so thanks to Ms. Ballard and her ilk.
    > Sorry to hear of her father’s passing, however, anyone who
    > champions Ms. Ballard as some sort of hero should see first
    > hand what her “cause” has done to the less fortunate.
    > Maybe she should set aside her $32 million to help those who
    > now cannot afford to have mold removed from their home
    > thanks to her. THAT, my dear, would be a true hero.
    > RD
    > On 2/16/10, Sharon wrote:
    >> I bet there are a lot of people on this board who do not
    >> understand where Melinda got her salt and tenacity to
    > stand
    >> up for what is right. Here is the answer.
    >> Huffington Post.
    >> Andrew Reinbach: Claude M. Ballard, Jr. -- Rest in Peace
    >> Claude M. Ballard Jr. died on Friday, Feb. 11th . Why
    > isn't
    >> important; he had to go, and we are here. Those who knew
    >> him, and valued his friendship, will miss him.
    >> I will. Every journalist with an established beat has what
    >> they call in New York a rabbi -- somebody who vouches for
    >> them, steers them in the right direction, and warns them
    >> when they're heading for the rocks. When I was covering
    > the
    >> big-time real estate business in the 1980s, Claude was
    >> mine. He opened doors for me, all over the world, that I
    >> might not have even have known of. I owe him.
    >> To people outside real estate, Claude's name doesn't mean
    >> much. But in that world, Claude was a great man -- one of
    >> the handful of people who make things move. Attached to
    >> some project or idea, his name was all that was necessary
    >> to attract respectful attention.
    >> He earned that position by being a walking real estate
    >> computer, data base, and Rolodex. But what really earned
    >> him his place was...being Claude. A big six-foot-three,
    >> Claude was overwhelming. Nothing, and no one, could
    > buffalo
    >> him. And in a business filled with over-sized
    >> personalities, that is a valuable commodity. Even sitting
    >> at a table, saying nothing, everyone knew he was there.
    >> That wasn't his best quality, though; his best quality was
    >> that he knew that every one -- and no one -- is important.
    >> So he treated everybody the same -- straight on, one to
    >> one. Claude never gave himself airs or acted like he was
    >> important -- though he certainly was. He had the gift of
    >> meeting everyone straight-on. Maybe that was because he
    > was
    >> a self-made man, son of a Memphis railroad traffic
    >> controller.
    >> Considering he'd survived at the pinnacle of the national
    >> and international commercial real estate industry for 50
    >> years, I'm sure he'd had his share of knock-down meetings -
    > -
    >> probably more than his share. And I know that if he'd
    >> wanted to, he could have had me for breakfast, and not
    > even
    >> known I was on the spoon. But in the 30 years I knew him,
    > I
    >> never saw him push anybody around.
    >> The heights Claude reached, and lived in, never went to
    > his
    >> head. It could have. He was a general partner of Goldman
    >> Sachs, back when it was a private partnership; chairman of
    >> Rockefeller Center Properties; in retirement, he owned
    >> interests in, among other things, 88 malls, plus other
    >> properties; served on many boards; and lectured at the
    >> nation's top schools. But he had no appetite for luxury,
    >> excess, or display. In his days at Goldman he kept no
    > limo.
    >> Taking the subway to work was good enough for him.
    >> If he said a deal was good, people didn't question it.
    >> Sometimes, a project he sponsored was subscribed in an
    >> afternoon. And he was so good at what he did that the same
    >> people who'd sat across the table from him in a deal would
    >> hire his services after it closed -- they knew nobody
    > could
    >> possibly do a better job.
    >> Until he left Goldman, Claude had only worked for two
    >> companies -- Prudential Insurance, and Goldman Sachs.
    > After
    >> he retired, he served on the board of CBL& Associates, a
    >> major mall owner.
    >> He started at Prudential as an analyst in 1948, and when
    > he
    >> left in 1981 he was senior vice president in charge of
    >> commercial real estate. Along the way he and a friend,
    >> Meyer Melnikoff, laid the foundation of pension fund
    >> investing in real estate. Before this, pension funds only
    >> invested in stocks, bonds, and U.S. Treasuries: Today,
    >> they're the backbone of large-scale real estate investing
    >> and ownership.
    >> And it was Claude and his friendships that made Goldman
    >> Sachs the dominant real estate investment banking house in
    >> the 1980s. Those were the sort of things that made him, in
    >> his time, one of the acknowledged leaders of his industry.
    >> But that's all to one side. Real estate will go on, and so
    >> will the world. What will take a pause, however, is the
    >> world Claude informed -- the world of his wife, Mary, his
    >> daughters Karen, Melinda, and Robyn, his grandchildren,
    > and
    >> his many friends.
    >> As I said, he had to go, and we are here. Those of us who
    >> knew Claude will know he is no longer among us.

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