This past Friday evening, Feb. 10, 2012, Dan Baker, Phillies public address announcer, was honored for his 40 years with the Philles. I had the honor of emceeing the event. My open and scripted intros follow. Hope you enjoy. To comment: firstname.lastname@example.org.
[6:55 p.m. Guests are asked to please take your seats]
[7 p.m.] COLD OPEN…ball game…
That is not just any rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” That belongs to the late, great, Phillies organist Paul Richardson who visited our campus in 2002 with our dear friend Harry Kalas to help our Public Relations Student Society of America celebrate Organ Donor Awareness Day. As he did for us then, Paul opens this celebration, tonight.
Good evening everyone and…Hello Sports Fans! Welcome to
Rowan University…as we recognize “The Voice of Philadelphia
Sports…Dan Baker…Class of 1968.”
I am Larry Litwin…your M-C for this exciting evening. I am an associate professor of Public Relations and Advertising, here at Rowan. I know many of those participating in this program and other guests…from my many years at KYW Newsradio in Philadelphia and…in my other life as secretary of the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association. I am especially honored to MC tonight because…I met… our friend, Dan Baker – back in 1972, when he announced his first game at Veterans Stadium…40 years ago…as a part-timer with the Phillies…co-incidentally…the same year I taught my first class in radio-TV here at Rowan…then Glassboro State College…also…as part-timer. I’m sure Dan agrees…when you love what you do, time…does indeed…fly.
This is going to be a wonderful evening…as we pay tribute to a Rowan alumnus, educator and…the VOICE of Citizens Bank Park, Lincoln Financial Field and Drexel University Basketball.
Tonight’s event has been made possible thanks to our sponsors:
[See NEXT Page]
Tonight’s festivities celebrate the accomplishments of an alumnus…and the establishment of the Dan Baker Broadcasting scholarship. To officially welcome all of you, it is my honor to introduce your host for THIS evening…Rowan University’s interim president, Dr. Ali Houshmand.
Ali intros Lorin Arnold…
Thank you Dean Arnold…
And now for our invocation, another dear friend of Rowan University, Monsignor Mike Mannion…
Dinner is being served.
As dinner is being served, I remind you to visit the Silent Auction. [Read list]
[As you complete dinner, we invite you to mingle and especially visit the silent auction tables.]
In addition to the “Silent Auction,” we have three live auction items. They are:
- A one of a kind telephone greeting by our guest of honor, Dan Baker – home phone, business phone or cell phone. And maybe, for the right price, all three.
- The Comcast Sports Net Luxury Suite at Wells Fargo center for a 76ers Game including FOUR tickets and complimentary food and beverages.
- And, the incredible Dan Baker Experience – a unique opportunity to spend a day at the ballpark with Dan. Hang out with Dan as he makes his rounds at Citizens Bank Park, including a trip down to the playing field where Dan handles his pre-game announcements, and a pre-game meal in the Press Club. Then, once the game begins, you’ll see first-hand just how Dan does his job as you join him for an entire game in the “Scoreboard Room” at the ballpark.
This is the last call for the Silent Auction…it closes in five minutes.
Let’s kick off the “Live auction with:
[Greetings from Dan Baker]
Have the voice of Citizens Bank Park, Lincoln Financial Field and Drexel Basketball leave your greeting on your answering machine or voice mail… whether it’s your home phone, your cell, or your business line, Dan Baker’s distinctive voice will greet your callers with a one-of-a-kind greeting. This unique opportunity will give your friends and associates the experience of visiting the stadium each and every time they call you. The starting bid will be…$50
Let me take this opportunity to thank President Houshmand and recognize his cabinet, the Rowan Board of Trustees, faculty and staff who are with us tonight.
And now it’s time to introduce our first guest speaker…
Girls Cross Country Head Coach
Kingsway High School]
Coach Milt Fredericks recently retired as Kingsway High School teacher and head girls cross country coach, but he continues to coach as an assistant. His coaching accolades include nine Tri-County championships, eight Gloucester County titles and five South Jersey championships. He was named South Jersey Coach of the Year in 1989. With a record of 113-13, he was inducted into the Gloucester County Hall of Fame in 1996.
Coach Milt Fredericks…
Keith Russell is the Action News sports anchor on weekdays at
6 and 11 p.m. Keith joined Action News in 2005 as a weekend sports anchor. He is also the host of Eagles Football Frenzy, a recap show every Sunday night during the NFL season, and “High School Huddle” on Friday nights…6abc’s first live high school football program. A Philadelphia native, Keith is very involved with community activities in the city. From Channel-6 Action News…6-ABC’s Keith Russell…
Former owner of Radio Station WCAM and long-time sportscaster:]
Pat Delsi was born Pasquale DelSignore in Italy, but as he grew up in South Jersey he knew he wanted to be in radio. Soon after being hired at a Vineland radio station in nearby Cumberland County, his boss said, I think you’d better change your name. It wasn’t as difficult as one would think…for Pasquale DelSignore. He looked out the station window at a street sign that said, Delsea Drive. The rest as they say is history. Pasquale became Pat Delsi and 58 years later, Pat is still practicing his craft. This year marks 54 years that he and his wife Margie have been married. Congratulations Pat. They have eight children and 19 wonderful grandchildren. Pat is past president of the Philadelphia Broadcast Pioneers and is president of the Philadelphia Press Association. Ladies and gentlemen, Dan Baker’s long-time partner on Drexel University basketball broadcasts, Pat Delsi…
Gloucester County Times]
Our next speaker is no stranger to anyone who has lived or worked in Gloucester County over the years. He fully defines the term “Key Communicator” and he IS one of the finest journalists I have ever known. A great sports writer, editor, columnist, TV host and an all-around GOOD person. Please welcome Bob Shryock… a columnist for the Gloucester County Times, where he covers the issues people are talking about.
Rob Brooks is manager of Broadcasting for the Phillies. He also works with our honored guest, Dan Baker on Drexel University baseball broadcasts. He has been a reporter for CN8 and a producer at CBS radio’s WPHT, both in Philadelphia. At the Phillies he has also produced and engineered games on the Phillies Radio Network.
Please welcome, the Phillies, Rob Brooks…
Dr. Eric Zillmer joined Drexel University’s faculty in 1988 and is now in his 11th year as director of athletics, overseeing all components of the athletics department. During his tenure as director, he assisted in the completion of the Walter Spiro Varsity Weight Room, the Drexel athletic logo, the Blue Cross Wellness Center and the new 84,000 square-foot recreational center, the department’s Sport Medicine facility and the Vidas Athletics Complex. He was also instrumental in securing the winning bid for the 2008 Olympic Trials in Table Tennis. Dr. Eric Zillmer…
Head Basketball Coach
La Salle University]
Our next speaker is no stranger to the Rowan campus. Dr. John Giannini has been head coach at La Salle University for eight seasons, turning La Salle into a conference contender shortly after being hired. On August 23rd, 2004, he was introduced as the 18th head coach in the 79-year history of Explorer men’s basketball. John has produced the program’s only winning A-10 records since joining the league. He is also the winningest coach in Maine history, and when he left Rowan University’s basketball program, John was the winningest active NCAA Division III head coach. Please join me in welcoming back, Dr. John Giannini…
Head Basketball Coach
While a student at St. Joseph’s University, James “Bruiser” Flint was a member of the University’s varsity basketball team. He was named to the All-Atlantic 10 team as a senior, and was inducted into the St. Joe’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 1988. In 1987, Bruiser became an assistant coach at Coppin State University. Two years later, he became an assistant coach at University of Massachusetts. In 1996, he became the school’s 17th head coach. In 2001, Bruiser resigned from U-Mass and the following season became head coach at Drexel University. He has been named Colonial Athletic Association Coach of the Year three times. Under his leadership, the Drexel Dragons have made four NIT appearances. Ladies and gentlemen, Coach Bruiser Flint…
Assistant Athletic Director for Major Gifts
John Baum, Temple University basketball’s second all-time leading rebounder and captain of the 1969 NIT Championship team, is in his eighth year as assistant athletic director for major gifts at Temple. In 2003, John raised close to $1 million for the University through endowments and scholarships. He was also instrumental in establishing the John Chaney Endowed Scholarship Fund.
As a player, in 1969…John Baum was drafted in the second round by the Chicago Bulls in the NBA and the first round by the Los Angeles Stars of the ABA. He played in the NBA for three seasons with the Bulls (1969-72) before competing in the ABA for three years with New Jersey (1972-74) and Indiana (1974-75). A three-time all-city selection, he was enshrined in the Temple Hall of Fame in 1979. John has been doing the color on Temple basketball for a dozen years. Ladies and gentlemen, Temple University basketball and Big-5 great, John Baum…
VP Media and Marketing
Kansas City Chiefs]
Robert Alberino is vice president of media and marketing for the Kansas City Chiefs, overseeing all the club’s media partnerships and its in-house production team. He maintains K-C-Chiefs.com and plays a role in the club’s marketing initiatives. Robert Alberino spent 13 seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, during which time he was nominated for 140 Regional Emmys and was honored as the winner of 38 Emmys. The Connecticut native also received more than 100 national Telly Awards and many regional accolades for his work with the Eagles Television Network, which he pioneered in his first year with the team. He was also a filmmaker for NFL Films, where he served as a writer/director for HBO’s Emmy Award-winning program, “Inside the NFL.” Ladies and gentlemen, Robert Alberino…
John Clark joined NBC10 in 2001 as a weekend sports anchor. John has earned several Mid-Atlantic Emmy nominations for his reports, and in 2004 he won an Emmy for “Outstanding Individual Achievement for Sports Reporting.” John has covered some of the biggest stories in Philadelphia sports history, including the Eagles appearance in Super Bowl 39 and the 2006 NFL Hall of Fame Game. From WCAU-TV, NBC 10, John Clark…
[William “Speedy” Morris
Retired Head Basketball Coach
La Salle University]
William “Speedy” Morris was head coach at La Salle University from 1986 to 2001. He led the Explorers to four NCAA tournament appearances. His 238 wins are the most in school history. He is best known for his 1989-1990 team—led by Lionel Simmons and Doug Overton—which posted a 30-2 record and finished 12th in both major polls. After eight straight losing seasons, Speedy left LaSalle. But, as they say, a door closes and a window opens. Speedy was hired at Saint Joseph’s Prep in Philadelphia. He is still there, and on February 7th, 2011 he earned his 561st win in the Philadelphia Catholic League, the most of any coach in league history. Please welcome, Coach Speedy Morris…
It’s time for our SECOND LIVE AUCTION item…
Comcast SportsNet Luxury Suite
One lucky bidder will win 4 luxury suite tickets to a 76ers game courtesy of Comcast SportsNet. You and your guests will be invited to a Sixers home game during their impressive 2011-12 season. Complimentary food and beverages are also provided. The date of the game must be mutually agreed upon between the bidder and Comcast SportsNet.
Who would like to open the bidding at $250…a real “steal.”
Philadelphia Eagles Announcer
VP & Gen. Manager WBCB Radio]
Merrill Reese is the radio voice of the Philadelphia Eagles on 94WIP. He has been our eyes and ears for Eagles’ games since 1977. After graduating from Temple University, Merrill began his career as a newscaster and sportscaster at WHAT and its FM companion, WWDB. In addition to his play-by-play radio coverage of the Eagles, Merrill hosts an interview show on WIP the day following Eagles’ games with Coach Andy Reid, Eagles players and other guests. Merrill is co-owner of 1490 WBCB (AM) in Levittown, Bucks County. Merrill’s autobiography, It’s Gooooood!, was published in 1998. Please welcome long-time Philadelphia sports broadcaster, Merrill Reese…
Former Philadelphia Phillies Left Fielder]
Greg “The Bull” Luzinski is a former left fielder who spent most of his career with the Phillies, but retired with the Chicago White Sox. While not known for his speed…or…defense, Greg was considered a homerun slugger, hitting .300 or better for three consecutive seasons… during what was considered the prime of his career. After spending 10 years with the Phillies, Greg was traded to the White Sox, where he would finish his major league career playing in Chicago from 1980 and 1984. While playing for the Sox, he was chosen Designated Hitter of the Year in 1981 and 1983. In 1983, he set a record for most homeruns in a season by a designated hitter. Fortunately for Greg, by the time he got to the White Sox, they were no longer wearing shorts with very high stockings to play their games. That would have been a sight to behold, seeing Greg in that uniform on a Topp’s baseball card?
After retiring, he served as head football and baseball coach at Holy Cross High School in Delran, Burlington County, and now spends his time as a Phillies ambassador at “Bull’s Barbecue” in Citizens Bank Park.
Ladies and gentlemen, an all-time Phillies favorite, Number 19, Greg “The Bull” Luzinski…
David Montgomery is part-owner, general partner, president and chief executive officer of the Phillies. Dave began his tenure with the Phillies in 1971 as a member of the team’s sales department. He worked his way up to director of sales and marketing by the mid-1970s…and as head of the business department by the early 1980s. He also spent a short time as the team’s scoreboard operator. When Bill Giles formed a group to purchase the Phillies from the Carpenter family in the spring of 1981, Dave was named the team’s executive vice president. When Mr. Giles stepped away from the team presidency to become the chairman, he recommended David to take the position president of the Philadelphia Phillies. Dave grew up in the Roxborough section of Philadelphia, graduated from Penn Charter and…I am proud to say…you and my son have something in common…because both are graduates of the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business. Dave has his Bachelor’s in history and an MBA. I stress Dave being born and raised in Philadelphia because he is the first native Philadelphian to run the ball club in more than six decades. Ladies and gentlemen, one Dan Baker’s bosses, the Phillies, David Montgomery…
David intros Dan
THIRD LIVE AUCTION ITEM…
The Dan Baker Experience
Tonight’s highest bidder will get the unique opportunity to spend a day at the ballpark with Dan Baker. Hang out with Dan as he makes his rounds at Citizens Bank Park, including a trip down to the playing field where Dan handles his pre-game announcements, and a pre-game meal in the Press Club. Then, once the game begins, you’ll see first-hand just how Dan does his job as you join him for an entire game in the “Scoreboard Room” at the ballpark. You’ll get a true behind-the-scenes feel for what it takes to put on the entire presentation of a Phillies game. And after the game, you’ll get the VIP tour, visiting several key places throughout the ballpark. In addition, Dan will also provide you with 4 tickets to the game for you to give to family/friends. The value of this opportunity is priceless. The starting bid will be…$250
Read winners of Silent Auction…
Thank you all for joining us for this wonderful evening that establishes the Dan Baker Broadcasting Scholarship at Rowan University. Drive home safely.