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Dale and the Dominoes

We all know Pacific Life, the humpback whale, but I’m betting there are revelations for readers of Peter J. Brennan’s wide-ranging conversation with the 149-year-old insurer’s 14th CEO, Jim Morris. (P. 1)

Emile Haddad and FivePoint had a good week—“final” OK for 5,100 homes in Newhall Ranch, first two phases of a $13 bill+ project that began when Hector was a pup. Needs one last gavel from an LA judge, after Tuesday’s 4-0 County nod. FivePoint is the master-plan developer of Irvine’s Great Park and two projects on the San Francisco Bay. 

Kudos to you Anteaters—getting value for your tuition dollar. Money Magazine tabbed UCI 7th best college for the money.

Sports fans know that NBA basketball dominated local TV screens at area bars and restaurants this July—no Wimbledon, baseball—more like Lonzo Ball. The Las Vegas Summer League isn’t an NBA idea, it’s HallPass Media’s Albert Hall’s and his No Cal partner Warren Legarie. “It’s a ticket to watch nine hours of basketball for just $30,” Hall, the president of the Costa Mesa sports marketing agency, told the New York Times. The pair won’t be in next week’s OC’s Wealthiest because of this brainchild—a chance for NBA teams to check out rookies, foreign-born players. The NBA and ESPN make most of the loot, but HallPass does OK—their agency roster alone includes top NBA coaches like Dallas’ Rick Carlisle.

Former State Sen. John Lewis managed the “most shocking political upset in the 1978 campaign,” according to the California Journal. Lewis’ client knocked off a Democratic Caucus chair in the heavily Democratic Lakewood-Long Beach 70th district, riding the Prop 13 tax-revolt wave. Lewis rode the tide himself into the Assembly in 1980, and “that got the dominoes rolling,” Lewis told me. “Then came Royce, Rohrabacher, Cox…our last heyday,” he said wistfully.

Today Lewis runs Lewis Consulting Group in Orange. I asked him if his beleaguered CA GOP could ride a similar tax attack into the statehouse in 2018.

“California has changed a lot politically and demographically,” Lewis said. “It will take more than gas-tax rumblings to propel us to victory in this state.”

Dale and the Dominoes: Postscript on Lewis and a final note on Dale Dykema, the Newport businessman, philanthropist, politico and gentleman who died this month at 87. Dykema ran for that same Assembly seat that Lewis managed to victory in ’78, and won himself in ’80. In ’76 Dykema got soundly beaten. “He didn’t hang his head,” said Lewis. “Dale hung in there, adopted me, was my finance chair, Dale’s responsible for our success.”

A memorial service for Dykema will be at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach on July 29 at 2 p.m. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to Discovery Cube Orange County and/or the Univ of Michigan Business School.

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