NEWSMAKERS


NEWSMAKERS

Carlson named chairwoman of Miss America organization

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J.

Former Fox News Channel anchor and 1989 Miss America Gretchen Carlson was named chairwoman of the Miss America Organization’s board of directors Monday, and three other past pageant winners will join her on the board.

The new leadership comes less than two weeks after leaked emails surfaced showing CEO Sam Haskell and others disparaging the appearance, intellect and sex lives of former Miss Americas. Haskell resigned Dec. 23, along with two other top leaders.

The selection of Carlson marks the first time a former pageant winner has served as the leader of the nearly 100-year-old organization.

Celebrities among founders of group

NEW YORK

Reese Witherspoon, Shonda Rhimes and Jennifer Aniston are among hundreds of Hollywood women who have formed an anti-harassment coalition called Time’s Up.

The initiative (www.timesupnow.com ) was launched Monday with an open letter vowing support for women in the entertainment business and beyond, from janitors to health care workers. Time’s Up will include a legal defense fund and will advocate for legislation combatting workplace harassment.

Time’s Up also is backing the movement for women to wear black, in solidarity with those who have been sexually harassed, at Sunday’s Golden Globes ceremony.

Donators to Time’s Up defense fund range from Meryl Streep and Taylor Swift to J.J. Abrams and Viola Davis.

Dozens of men have faced harassment and assault allegations in recent months, including Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose and Kevin Spacey.

Polka, Ponzi and prison: Jack Black stars in new biopic

Jan Lewandowski built a “polka empire” from his base in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, only to watch it crumble after his arrest on fraud charges.

Lewandowski’s rise and fall is played for laughs in “The Polka King,” starring Jack Black as the flamboyant Polish emigre who attracted legions of polka fans – and fleeced some of them as he tried desperately to keep his business enterprises afloat. The movie comedy premieres Jan. 12 on Netflix.

Now living quietly in Florida, the 76-year-old says he’s thrilled about Black’s portrayal.

The Grammy-nominated bandleader and crooner better known as Jan Lewan served five years in prison after pleading guilty to bilking investors of millions.

Some of his victims aren’t exactly thrilled to hear his name again, saying he doesn’t deserve the attention.

Associated Press

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