Nolan Getaways – 1995
Travel by Lewis & Betty Nolan
May 27: Old Waverly
June 18: Old Waverly
Feb. 3-6: Rio
July 20: Old Waverly
Aug. 10-11: Old Waverly &
Feb. 27-Mar. 1:
Mar. 18: Old Waverly,
Oct. 1: Old Waverly
April 6-7: Old Waverly &
Nov. 30-Dec. 1: Old Waverly &
May 30-June 1:
Page Updated May 3, 2008 (Last Callup; 10:30 a.m. June 10)
Jan. 10-12, 1995 – To
I flew from
The next day I visited the offices of new
But the reason for the trip was for me to attend and
represent my company, Schering-Plough HealthCare Products, at a reception
honoring Senators Frist and Thompson. Former Tennessee Senator Howard Baker and
Schering-Plough President Dick Kogan at the exclusive F Street Club, near the
White House at
There were over 100 persons employed by
Schering-Plough or important to the company at the reception. Among those who
came to greet new Senators Frist and Thompson were
Others at the politically star-studded reception were
former Senator Bill Brock, former Representative Dan Kuykendall, Memphis Mayor
Willie Herenton, National Transportation Board chairman Jim Hall, Housing and
Urban Development Secretary Wilbur Hawkins, Agriculture Department General
Counsel Jim Gilliland and many other well-connected Tennesseans. Fellow
Memphian Fred Smith, founder of Federal Express and possibly the most
politically powerful businessman in
After the reception, I went to the nearby Dubliner
Pub and enjoyed Irish beer and sandwiches with my Schering-Plough colleagues
Dick Kinney of the
While staying at the Hyatt, I worked out twice in the hotel’s spa and fitness center. It was a grand trip that gave me a chance to say hello to a lot of people who are important to the corporation.
Jan. 17-18, 1995 – To
I drove to
Both of us stayed at
About the best thing I could say about the Task Force meeting was that Mac and I succeeded in getting our company’s prescription drug formulary issues on the table. But a woman named Polly, whom I considered to be obnoxious, identified herself as a consultant for a Managed Care Organization (MCO) repeatedly challenged the prescription drug company representatives in attendance. My attitude toward her priggishness was hardened by the presence of a rather bad cold, which was severe enough to eliminate my customary workout in hotel exercise facilities when I’m on the road.
Betty and I Attend Gov. Sundquist Inauguration
Jan. 20-22 – To
Despite a lingering head cold, I returned to
Betty and I stayed at the swanky Stouffer Hotel in
The swearing-in ceremony was across the street at the
Betty and I walked to a nearby office of a lobbyist
to warm up but returned to the politics of the day by attending a gala
reception and dinner in honor of the new governor that evening. Schering-Plough
was one of the sponsors, at $5,000, and we were seated at a table hosted by
Republican Rep. Ed Bryant of
Betty looked terrific at the First Lady’s Ball at the
The next morning, we checked out of the hotel and drove home. A little less than halfway back to Memphis, we stopped at country singer Loretta Lynn’s estate and visitor center (includes campground, antebellum home, souvenir store and a beautiful fishing stream) at Hurricane Mills. All in all, it was a great trip despite my lingering head cold.
Communications Work Given High Marks in Survey
Jan. 25-26, 1995 – To
I took advantage of some cheap airfares by flying
I spent the night at the
I was quite pleased when one of our divisional marketing research gurus, Stuart Rose, gave a presentation on the results of an employee communications survey his department had done for our operation. As Vice President Communications for the division and equipped with a very good staff and a healthy budget, I was glad to learn that the survey revealed high marks given our department’s work.
Making it especially nice was the fact that among those present to hear about what a good job we were doing were my boss, Bob Raub (Senior Vice President of Human Resources) and my former subordinate Claudia Robinson (whom I had helped several years ago with her promotion and transfer from Memphis to Corporate Communications in Schering-Plough’s nearby headquarters in Madison, NJ. Others present to hear the positive report on the survey of our divisional employee communications included interns Gina Evans of our Memphis office and Tina Antico of our Liberty Corner office; and Alex Lehner, Employee Communications Manager for the corporation’s Schering Pharmaceuticals of Kenilworth, N.J. There were also several Human Resources managers present for the briefing.
I flew back to
Convertible Top Down for Desert Heat in February
Feb. 3-6, 1995 – To Rio
Betty and I flew to the
We took a certain delight in paying more-than-usual
attention to the weather reports coming out of the cold Northeast, with eight
inches of snow hitting
The Rio Rico resort is atop a mesa that overlooks the
The hotel at the resort was formerly operated as a
Sheraton and is now owned by a development company that owns 100 square miles
of mostly empty land just a few miles from the Arizona-Mexico border at
I thought the course was one of the tougher ones I’ve
played in the desert, but it is very playable with somewhat generous fairways.
Even though I hadn’t played much recently due to the winter cold back home in
Betty and I drove a few miles south to
The mild temperatures and pleasant facilities made me want to get in my full quota of exercise during the trip. One day I did two miles on the hotel treadmill, following with a swim of 16 laps in the hotel pool (which was probably 25 yards long), or roughly a quarter-of-a-mile.
The most physically punishing activity came on Saturday afternoon when we went horseback riding. I had a large gelding named Thumper. Betty was on a mare named So Neat. Evidently the horses didn’t get along very well since Thumper would lag behind until I urged him to trot up to So Neat, causing my rear end to chafe from the bumping in the saddle. The resort’s Mary Barratt led the two-hour ride along the river, which had recently flooded and decorated riverbank brush and bushes with assorted debris and junk.
I’m sure I looked like a perfect greenhorn cowboy. I was wearing my relatively new cowboy boots, a cowboy hat and a bolo tie.
On Sunday, Betty and I drove the rental Mustang
convertible to the nearby desert town of
Later, Betty and I went to the Tubac Art Colony a few
miles away, where dozens of artists have stalls and small shops offering desert
art and other objects. We had arranged this trip around its annual Art Festival
and toured the festival amid several thousand art fanciers and vacationers.
Among the permanent galleries open to tour was Tubac Ironworks, a retail dealer
for about 150 metal artists that include “The Metal Man” of
While there, we had a passable lunch of Bratwurst at Johan’s, a German restaurant of all things in the desert. We were surprised to learn that there are no southwestern-style restaurants of any consequence near Tubac, or at least none that anybody we talked to would recommend.
We checked out of the hotel at Rio Rico on Sunday
morning for a leisurely drive north through the
We had a great trip and ideal weather this time and want to return to Rio Rico and the area for another winter getaway.
Inviting Tennessee Governor to Barbeque Contest
Feb, 13-14, 1995 – To
I drove to
While at the
Both Mac and I stayed at the Stouffer Hotel in
Feb. 22-23, 1995 – To
I drove to just over 200 miles to
I stayed at the Hampton Inn near
Feb. 27 – March 1, 1995 – To
I drove back to
I had a passable dinner of fajitas at the hotel that
evening and attended the Board of Governors meeting for the Tennessee
Association of Business (TAB) the next day. I attended the TAB annual blowout
reception that evening and had an opportunity to visit with Sen. Jim Kyle of
That evening, I enjoyed an excellent dinner at
Mario’s Restaurant (costing $400 billed to my company) with Deputy Gov. Tom
McNamara, Carter Witt and Dave Goetz of TAB. Tom, whom I had gotten to know
when he was the senior legislative aide to Governor Sundquist in Sunquist’s
Congressional Office in Washington, went ballistic with us over some letters
from the Memphis Area Chamber of Commerce that chided his longtime boss over
the important legislative issue of the day (easing the franchise tax on
inventory in transit). Tom also threatened to cut the state funding for The Med
Tom clearly was showing me and the paid leaders of
the state’s largest business lobbying organization that he is not a man to be
messed over the terms of state fiduciary policy. His volcanic demeanor
suggested to me that he hasn’t fully adjusted from being a back-office
legislative aide to a front-seat leader of
I drove back to
To Old Waverly for So-so Round of Golf with Curtis
March 18, 1995 – To Old Waverly Golf Club,
I drove to Old Waverly in my Ford Taurus station wagon with my fellow member Curtis Downs and his golfing pal and client Lynn Akin. It was a great day for golf, sunny with a temperature climbing to about 75 degrees. This was my first time on the gorgeous course since last November and my long layoff showed up in my indifferent play. I drove the ball fairly well but my mid and short iron shots were awful.
I played off the blue championship tees for the first 9 holes, shooting a miserable 52. But on the back 9, I moved up to the white tees and was marginally better, shooting a 48 for a total score of 100.
March 27-28, 1995 – To
I drove to
As volunteer chairman for Greater Memphis in the
annual U.S. Savings Bonds campaign on behalf of the U.S. Treasury, I traveled
Both winners were students at a Middle School in
I stayed at the Holiday Inn Crown Plaza across the street from Legislative Plaza, which gave me the chance to say hello to several elected political figures from Memphis including Sen. Roscoe Dixon and Reps. Joyce Hassell, Tim Joyce, Larry Miller, Ulysses Jones and the Pharmaceutical Research Manufacturers Association lobbyist Betty Anderson, a onetime beauty queen who worked for Schering-Plough some years earlier. I also said hello to Deputy
Gov. Peaches Simpkins, Hardy Mays of Memphis, who serves as general counsel to the governor, and Deputy Gov. Tom McNamara.
I discussed with Tom the upcoming
I drove back to
April 6-7, 1995 – To
I drove to Old Waverly in two cars with my government
relations pals Greg Duckett of
The four of us were all enthusiastic golfers who
struggled to shoot scores that can best be typified as “average.” Golf Digest,
a considerable honor that all Clubs compete for, recently named old Waverly
Golf Club, where I have been a member for several years, to
To change conversation and company, both cars stopped
about halfway down the 150-mile drive to
Once on the golf course, I played fairly well for the three sets of nines we played on a beautiful day. I shot a 50, a 44 and a 44, giving me an 88 for the last 18 holes. It turned out mine was the best score of our foursome.
Later, I drove 15 or so miles from West Point to nearby
Several members of the board participated the next
day in a golf outing at Old Waverly. Lee Welch, an MSU grad and very successful
After an enjoyable afternoon of golf, I showed at the
club and drove home that evening, arriving back in
April 8-16, 1995 – To
Betty and I drove from
We drove the next morning across the
Betty and I joined Curtis and his wife, Kathy, for a
very good dinner at our favorite restaurant in
Due to my carrying a company laptop computer (a portable CPU unit that slides in and out of a docking station on my office Compaq back in Memphis, I was able to do a lot of writing work in our condo while Betty sunned at the beach just a few steps outside our door in the Gulf Village complex. Unfortunately, I was not able to get my laptop to import a series of documents I had created using the Word Perfect software.
Unfortunately, I’ve noticed that whenever my company hires a new computer-systems executive, they are quick to put in their favorite software program as the company standard. That means that even though Word Perfect had been the “official” software for word processing recently, it had not become all but antiquated and I was faced with the time-consuming process of learning the new company standard, Microsoft Word.
I played golf on Wednesday at the State Park course on a misty, overcast day. I was terrible under the somewhat lousy conditions, shooting a 51/49/46. However, my friend Curtis played very well and found liked the course a lot.
That evening, I spent a lot of time working on mail
and editing company newspaper copy that had been written by my
Again on Thursday, I dropped off some fax material at
a print shop and played some more golf. This time I played at a new course
called The Woodlands and designed by PGA tour veteran. I liked the fairly short
but plush course and played off the white tees. I hit a mulligan off the first
tee and ended up with the first of 7 pars on the front 9 holes for a score of
39 at the turn. It was a glorious day for both weather and my golf game. I
enjoyed an element of luck that was somewhat unusual on the golf course. I
happened to drop quite a few 8 or 9 foot putts. When confronted with
For the round, I ended up with one of my lowest scores ever, an 81 which was a surprise on a new course this difficult. That low score came despite my taking a 5 on the Par 3 No. 17 holes and a 6 on the Park 5 No. 18 after hooking a shot into the woods once I went for a big chance to make a birdie on the hole. In comparison, my pal Curtis shot an 85 – a pretty good score I think for even him on this course. It was a great day for me.
The next day, I cycled 10 miles and then sat on the beach in front of our condo with Betty. I was out in the sun too long for my fair skin and age so got bit sunburned.
I cycled again on Saturday for 10 miles and later walked a mile down the beach with Betty. It was joyful weather for a walk, with sunny skies and gentle surf washing up on the sand. Loads of teens and spring-breaking college students were working on their tans. We had a nice time but agreed that, as usual for this time of year, our time at the beach was too-short
To DC sans Credit Cards for UV Index Lobbying
May 8-11, 1995 – To
I flew from Memphis to Washington, DC on Northwest Airlines and stayed at the Hotel Washington at Pennsylvania and 15th Street, located one block from the White House and very convenient to a nearby Metro subway station at the sweeping mall in the nation’s capital.
I found at check-in into the hotel that I had stupidly neglected to transfer my credit cards to my traveling wallet (an error I determined to thereafter avoid by traveling with the same wallet I normally carry and sending it through the gate security in a plastic pan with other personal stuff).
Without my credit cards, I had to dig deep to come up with $190 in cash to pay for the hotel room in advance. I had enough money to enjoy an excellent filet mignon that evening at Ebbert’s Grill near the hotel. The unflappable attitude of the hotel’s desk clerk suggested to me that a guest discovering his or her credit cards are missing must be fairly common. A telephone call to American Express resulted in the hotel arranging to bill my card by phone and I was promised delivery of a new card the next morning. Meanwhile, my wife, Betty, FedEx’ed me my other credit cards so everything turned out OK. But it was sure a hassle.
The next morning I met with Assistant Secretary of Commerce Doug Hall, a Tennessean who had been close to my political pal Al Gore when Al was in the U.S. Senate. At the meeting were Dick Kinney, a Schering-Plough vice president in charge of government relations and our corporate office in Washington, Nancy Glick of our big PR firm, Hill & Knowlton, and Juli Cavnar of our divisional marketing staff. We made our company’s arguments to Secretary Hall about the importance of the government expanding its test of communicating the health benefits of sunscreens like our Coppertone’s inclusion of UVA ray protection.
Meanwhile, the Republican chairman to our dismay was proposing that the Commerce Department and about 100 of its programs be scrapped in favor of a small government. (It turned out that the UVA weather alert program we favored was expanded and became a standard feature in newspapers and TV weather programs across the U.S. (I was pleased when our company president, Dave Collins, publicly thanked me for my work on behalf of the program at a large employee meeting in Memphis.)
That evening, Dick Kinney and I had an excellent dinner of crab cakes in a private dining room at the exclusive City Club in Downtown Washington. I was reminded at just how rich and powerful my company really is when its influence counts and is on the line.
The next day, I visited
I then took a cab to the
While the weather delay was aggravating, it turned out that the trip was a productive one as my company’s heavy advertising of Coppertone for UVA protection did not have to be pulled and I got much credit within the company for the reversal in a government action to stay clear of the issue.
In retrospect, this was one of my finest moments at Schering-Plough, when the various skills and contacts I had worked so hard to acquire over the years in the news media and government relations paid off big time.
Still Hammering Away at UVA Index Issue
May 15-16, 1995 – To
I flew from
The next morning I met with HCP Suncare product manager Juli Cavnar, Kurt Brynkman, Director of Suncare Marketing; Frank Glazer and Nancy Glick of Hill & Knowlton Public Relations, Russ Elliot, Vice President of HCP Advertising; and Dr. John Clayton, Senior Vice President of Scientific Research and Regulatory Affairs. We discussed the potential ramifications of what we had learned was a potential 60 Minutes TV show on so-called “Astroturf grassroots” political campaigns that big corporations were actually conducting in the name of public response to high-interest matters.
It was our wary understanding that the TV program investigators were specifically targeting Coppertone’s quiet support for a supposed public interest group called “Partners for Sun Protection Awareness.”
After some spirited discussion, we decided as a group that our company’s best strategy to deal with the issue would be to be as open as possible about our sponsorship, but keep our comments and actions as low-key as possible while continuing our new UV marketing program to pitch Coppertone in line with the importance of sun protection rather than a pure tanning enhancement product.
That afternoon, I met with Don Conklin, the new
president of our division, HCP; Rich Whittaker, Senior Vice President for
SunCare marketing; Russ Elliot, Vice President for HCP Advertising; Juli
Cavnar, SunCare Marketing Manager; and Kurt Brynkmann, SunCare Marketing Group
Director. We talked with Dick Kinney, Corporate Vice President of Government
Affairs, by a telephone connection to his
It was very helpful that our new president, Don Conklin who formerly headed up the Pharmaceutical Operations of Schering-Plough, bought into this risky strategy of “betting the brand” on the success of our efforts to keep the government on the UVA index approval track.
Completing what I had hoped to help accomplish, I
flew home to
More on SPF Marketing Push by Coppertone
May 22-23, 1995 – To
I flew from
The hotel is near the airport and located on top of a shopping mall and Metro subway stop so is very convenient.
The next morning I spent some time in the hotel spa, where I did 30 minutes on an exercise bike and 15 minutes on a rowing machine before catching the Metro to the Foggy Bottom stop near quite a few foreign embassies. From there I walked a short distance to the Kennedy Center and the American Film Institute-leased space so I could attend a press conference sponsored by my company, Schering-Plough HealthCare Products. The shebang was in the name of our dummy marketing organization, Partners for Sun Protection Awareness.
Speakers at the press conference included Dr. Joe
Friday of the National Weather Service, several luminaries from the federal
Centers for Disease Control and several leaders of assorted physician and
dermatology groups. They all lauded the new Ultraviolet Light (UV) index, which
had been developed in large measure by my company. The speakers also pointed to
some alarming statistics about the increasing incidence of skin cancer in the
A goodly crowd of Washington-based reporters was present for the important press conference, with thanks due to the event-advancing efforts of our public relations firm, Hill & Knowlton. Nancy Glick, a real pro, ably represented H&K.
Also in attendance were several key employees of
Schering-Plough including me, Russ Elliot, Vice President of Advertising, Juli
Cavnar, Suncare Marketing Manager, and Dick Kinney, head of our legislative
Happily, it turned out that the press conference and assorted announcements about the importance of using suncreens containing SPF ingredients (like Coppertone, of course) got a lot of press coverage in the national newspaper, magazine and TV media.
After the event, I joined Dick Kinney and Nancy Glick
plus a law partner of our
It was very obvious that the Republican congressman saw his opposition to the government education program we advocated as being based on cost cutting although there was little if any budgetary impact of the program.
Our group also met with Rep. John Tanner of
That evening, I flew home on Northwest, satisfied that I done everything I could to advance our company’s marketing efforts for the sunscreen-laden Coppertone products – while advancing the health of my fellow Americans at the same time.
May 30-June 1, 1995 – To
I flew from
Fortunately, the New York City Ballet company had
given me a free ticket when I had complained back in 1993 about a surprise
snowstorm diverting my flight from
The ballet company manager compensated me for the prepaid ticket to a missed performance by giving me the choice of several advance bookings and I had arranged to attend a major show by the ballet troupe of Verdi’s “Four Seasons” and of Mozart’s “Divertissement No. 15.”
I was given at no charge a choice seat in the big
The next morning, I swam 105 laps in the smallish,
indoor pool at the
At the meeting of representatives of major drug
makers with substantial interests in OTC products, I ended up leading a
“charge” against a staff recommendation that the lobbying and advocacy trade
group “pause” in some of its public relations efforts. I thought that with the
regulatory storm brewing up in
After the meeting, I repaired to the nearby Tiffany’s jewelry store where I bought a sterling silver key chain decorated with a tiny gardening bucket to give to my wife, Betty, for Christmas. Later, I went to the Manhattan Ocean Club for an excellent seafood dinner then bought a half-price ticket at the discount shop on Broadway for a performance of “Smokey Joe’s Café.” The musical was highly entertaining and featured a fabulous rock ‘n roll revue of songs from the 1950s that had been made famous by Elvis, The Coasters and others.
The next morning, I drove a rental Avis car from
That afternoon I met briefly with my boss, Bob Raub, who gave me the news that his fellow executives Rich Whittaker and Bob Cullen were assuming what had been my annual responsibility for feeding divisional information to corporate investor relations Vice President Gerry Foster. I wasn’t quick enough to appreciate it at the time, but that was a sign of my dwindling influence in corporate governance matters after a long run that I had enjoyed regarding the collection and dissemination of positive investment climate information.
I was again lucky on the flight home to
Casey Nolan Shoots 78 at Old Waverly Golf Club
May 27, 1995 – To Old Waverly Golf Club,
My son Casey and I drove to Old Waverly and happily found the course at our private club to be in superb shape. It was a great day for golf and Casey had a great day. He shot what I believe is the best score I’ve ever seen him shoot, a 78. My golf was OK, but far below the skill level he demonstrated, with my scoring an 89.
Nonetheless, I was most happy to be a proud papa and what I believe to be a very believable witness to Casey’s great day.
Back to Old Waverly for Father’s Day, score of 90
June 18, 1995 – To Old Waverly Golf Club,
My son Casey and I again drove to Old Waverly to celebrate Father’s Day with a round on golf. I had the better of our scores for a change. I shot a 47 on the Front 9 while driving off the white tees. I dropped back to there blue tees for the back side and shot a 43 for a total score of 90.
Up Old Man River aboard Navy’s USS Whirlwind
June 23, 1995 – To Helena, AR for boat ride
I drove in a Navy bus with Betty and about 30 other
VIPs for a special excursion arranged by the U.S. Navy to be aboard the new
ship USS Whirlwind on its maiden voyage up the Mississippi River from
The Whirlwind is the Navy’s new Coastal Patrol Ship, somewhat modeled after riverine craft used during the Vietnam War. It is 170 feet long and has a permanent crew who live aboard ship.
For political and public affairs purposes, the
Whirlwind was coming to
Other guests included retired Vice Adm. Ed Cooke, a leader in local military affairs activities, banker Bob Booth and his wife Melissa and my associate and deputy at Schering-Plough Health Care Products, June Davidson and his wife Punk. The Navy fed us an excellent lunch – barbeque beef and vegetables.
We had plenty of time to visit with the ship’s crew
and tour their living and working quarters. The sailors were jammed in tightly
on the relatively small ship, reminding me of a World War II submarine that is
docked and open for tour in
At one point, the skipper (a young lieutenant fresh
out of the U.S. Naval Academy at
It was obvious that the ship’s sailors had been carefully briefed when I questioned a sailor about the ship’s cannon potential and was politely told that such information was “classified” and could not be discussed.
Spending a half a beautiful summer day on the river
in good company was one of the highpoints of my time at Schering-Plough. Later
in the week, I arranged for a special barbeque meal to be catered at the
Several weeks later, the Navy presented me with a
plaque that today hangs on my home office wall proclaiming me a “plank owner”
of the Whirlwind. I have only good memories of my work and support activities
to help the Navy and at one time took advantage fairly often of a guest
membership in the
Busy Working, But At Beautiful
July 2-9, 1995 – To
Betty and I drove from our home in
We were faced with a lot of rain during most of the
drive south down Interstate 55 to Jackson, MS, where we caught U.S. Highway 49
to Hattiesburg, MS, where we turned left to dash across much of Mississippi and
part of Alabama on U.S. Highway 98 to Mobile, AL, where we caught Interstate 10
to the town of Loxley and then Highway 59 south to Gulf Shores. The traffic got
While my work responsibilities took a big bite out of
my vacation time, I was in a beautiful place and a great time of year to enjoy
the beach, the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and a panoply of recreational
activities available on the
One day we hauled our bikes to the car ferry at
Another day I enjoyed a good round of golf at the State Park course. I shot a very good score of 83, hitting 11 of 14 fairways. Meanwhile, Betty was her usual industrious self, finding time to paint most of our condo’s interior woodwork with fresh paint. We did some shopping for some needed equipment and I had the condo’s wall-to-wall carpet cleaned by a commercial service.
The weather was rather hot as is usual at this holiday time of year and there were fairly heavy crowds of swimmers and sunbathers on the beach. It was mostly sunny and the Gulf water was warm and clear enough to enable me to snorkel one day.
Don Holmes Shoots Par at Old Waverly
July 20, 1995 – To Old Waverly Golf Club,
I drove to Old Waverly with Curtis Downs, Don Holmes and surprise guest Thurman Glass, a great golfer who works at Schering-Plough HealthCare Products and always a pleasure to be with.
As is too-often the case, I was terrible this day,
shooting a 103 on a fabulous golf course (ranked one of the Top 100 in the
But Don was blazingly good this day and just recently
the winner of
While my golf was below par, it was a joy watching
two terrific golfers have their way with the tough course. We enjoyed some good
fellowship in the Men’s Locker room after our round. The weather was so hot
that we decided against playing another 9 holes then drove back to
Golf at Old Waverly and Goodbye to Jimmy Solomon
Aug. 10-11, 1995 – To
I drove from my home in
Unfortunately, Jimmy was a great man who was leaving
State in favor of a somewhat comparable job at
On my way to
The Advisory Board and other friends enjoyed a dinner
in Jimmy’s honor at
Sept. 14-15, 1995 – To
I flew from
I enjoyed an excellent dinner of Triggerfish in
To Old Waverly with Bob Hetherington, Curtis Downs
Oct. 1, 1995 – To Old Waverly Golf Club,
I drove to Old Waverly in my Ford Taurus station wagon with my fellow golf club member Curtis Downs and my guest and friend, Bob Hetherington, who held my former job as Business Editor of The Commercial Appeal. We had ideal weather and found the great course to be in great shape.
I shot a 98 for 18 holes and 46 for another 9 holes.
Treating Bob to a day of golf at one of the top courses in the
Nov. 2-5, 1995 – To
Betty and I drove through hard rain most of the way to Gulf Shores, AL, making this possibly the worst overall drive of our four or so trips a year there from Memphis following our purchase of a condo on the beach there in 1986.
We were pleased to see that our condo development, Gulf Village, survived the big storm of the previous month pretty well as did most other developments near us on West Beach. However, we noticed the front swimming pool overlooking the Gulf of Mexico had been partly filled with sand and most of the fences, pool pumps and other equipment which had been on the ground were either gone or damaged. We learned that a 10-foot high surge of storm water had washed over the complex property, taking with it assorted decorative brick-a-brac on the ground and some of the exterior equipment.
Our upstairs, one-bedroom unit sustained water stain damage to the wall-to-wall carpet near the front door when water somehow washed under the door. However, State Farm Insurance declined to cover the damage, claiming that it was uncovered “wind damage.”
Betty and I walked along the beach in front of our and adjacent condo complexes and also drove up and down West Beach Blvd to have a look at a lot of similar damage to that our complex sustained to swimming pools and fences.
I played a round of golf at the State Park course,
shooting an above-average round of 86 on a great day for outdoor activities.
That evening, Betty and I ate at The Spot, our favorite restaurant that
overlooks the public beach. We also ate during our stay at a new restaurant
farther down the beach near the mouth of
Meanwhile, I did some corporate communications work on my portable laptop computer to help our division president, Don Conklin of Schering-Plough HealthCare Products, prepare for an upcoming employee communications meeting. It was a short but productive trip.
Nov. 7-9, 1995 – To
I flew from
At Corporate Headquarters, I met with General Counsel Joe Connors (who had been next door to my Memphis office before his transfer and promotion to Madison) to discuss Tennessee politics; Linn Weiss, Corporate Vice President of Communications, to discuss press ramifactions of a study pointing to a pullout of certain manufacturing functions from Memphis; and others.
I went easy on my usual hotel exercise-while-traveling program due to a recent test that indicated very high blood pressure and while awaiting the results of a follow-up test (which subsequently revealed that my health is OK).
Nov. 27-28, 1995 – To
The drums that beat big career trouble for me and hundreds of my work associates at Schering-Plough HealthCare Products in Memphis were beating louder and I flew Newark on Northwest to prepare as well as I could for my diminished role in the coming cutbacks.
The trip got off to a bad start in
The next day, I met with my boss, Bob Raub Senior
Vice President of Human Resources, to discuss the probably move of OTC
medications out of
The new divisional and corporate management wanted our division to get rid of the smaller brands, which our management had historically supported because the combined marketing salespower was significant. The strategic disagreements had led to the early retirement of an extraordinarily gifted executive, Lee Jenkins, who was Abe Plough’s hand-picked successor and the man responsible for bringing me into the company that had many years of notable success. Whether I liked it or not – and it really didn’t make much difference whether I did – I and some of the people I was closest too were seen as defenders/members of the “old guard” and “old ways” of doing business by some of the most recent additions to the management team.
During the course of my meeting with Bob Raub, I discovered the existence of a big Correctol Communications Crisis Planning Meeting that was underway. I bitched about being cut out of the meeting despite by status as divisional Communications Vice President and Bob arranged for me to be invited to the meeting. Once there, I found that our outside PR agency, Hill & Knowlton, had three representatives already there to discuss “oversight” matters.
I was surprised to learn that Rich Whittaker, our divisional Senior Vice President for the Marketing of OTC and other brands, had left the meeting early and left subordinate Tom Feitel in charge of the meeting.
It was very surprising, annoying and maddening to me
that such a profound change in moving Correctol manufacturing out of
The next morning, our new HCP president, Don Conklin,
talked to the division’s senior managers and blurted out the news that “we’re
moving OTC manufacturing out of
It was obvious to me and others that Conklin – whose career is based on his top management success in the prescription drug arm of Schering-Plough - plays by a different rulebook than the one I was accustomed to.
Shaken by the coming upheaval in a company I had grown to love and prospered with, I took Tina Antico of my staff and her friends Kelly Clark and Joan De Chellis of Liberty Corner Marketing staff, to lunch at the nearby Somerset Hills Country Club. I felt it necessary to reign in their plans for some big spending to support a coming Family Fun Team event to build employee morale at Liberty Corner. I could not support their proposed budget of $180 per couple to spend on food, souvenirs and kiddie rides for the event.
That afternoon, I repaired to
Old Waverly Yields Bad Golf, MSU Fair Meeting
Nov. 30-Dec. 1, 1995 - To Starkville &
Old Waverly Golf Club,
I drove to Old Waverly and met my good buddy and fellow member Curtis Downs for a round of golf on a great day, with skies sunny and temperatures about 70 degrees. Despite the favorable weather, my golf was terrible (again) and I shot a 99 for 18 holes. But at least I walked the course so benefited from the exercise.
Later, I drove on to
I soon found that our Board meeting had been overbooked, but we were treated to a ho-hum dinner of baked ham at university’s Wine Chalet on campus. After eating, I left the group early so I could enjoy a drink with my old pal Dr. Clyde Williams, a Professor of English who unfortunately was suffering from a bad head cold. He did not bring to the Starkville bar the lastest winner of the Lewis and Betty Nolan Book Award, which I had funded with Schering-Plough Foundation help earlier to cover the expenses of books for English majors.
The Advisory Board meeting the next day on campus was a good one, with 8 of 12 members present. I suggested, as part of a curriculum review project the College is working on, a system to broaden the knowledge and culture of transfer students to State from various junior colleges that would require their attendance at various college lectures and arts performances. At least my fellow Board members thought it was a good idea although we recognized the potential difficulty of getting student “buy-in” for such a requirement.
I skipped lunch with Advisory Board members in favor
of returning to Old Waverly to play another round of golf with Curtis before
driving back to
Cool Shoulders at Schering-Plough PAC Meeting
Dec. 4-6, 1995 – To Kenilworth and
I flew from
I attended a meeting at our facility of the Schering-Plough Better Government Fund, the company’s political action committee upon which I serve. Among those present were Dick Kinney, a Vice President and head of corporate government relations; John Nine, a senior vice president of the Pharmaceutical Operations arm of the Company; Dan Nichols, a senior vice president and the corporation’s top tax expert; and Russ Elliot, Vice President of Advertising for HealthCare Products.
It was plain to me that both Nichols and Nine were
“cool” to me, particularly when I questioned the PAC’s contributions to three
Democratic candidates for the House of Representatives. Their uncharacteristic,
unsupportive attitude toward me was a big surprise and gave me further evidence
that my tide had turned within the top reaches of corporate management. This
was a surprise and a disappointment because I had done favors for both men but
still wasn’t fully aware of all the negative implications for me and my
colleagues by an ongoing study into the nature and need for continued
After the PAC meeting, I drove from
Back to Liberty Corner the next day, I found that the Correctol communications crisis involving the ingredient Phenolypheline was coming to a head. I also found that my 15 years in the metro daily newspaper business at The Commercial Appeal and 8 years as a stringer for the Wall Street Journal made me about as useful and welcome as a fifth wheel.
Nonetheless, I had a good meeting with Tina Antico of
my staff – a PhD candidate who had been working as an intern in our Liberty
Corner Employee Communications department. With the support of my boss, Bob
Raub, I want to help her return to her homeland of
I also met with Kelly Clark and Joan DeChellius, volunteers from the company Marketing Department who are planning an upcoming dinner-dance for divisional employees Jan. 13. I am involved since I have responsibility – mainly exercised through my excellent subordinate Melissa Faber – for Employee Activities. We agreed on a larger co-payment by employees ($30) and a cash bar for those who attend.
A separate meeting with Coppertone Marketing Manager Juli Cavnar ironed out some details of our Internal Communications Plan regarding a toxicology controversy regarding sunscreens. However, I quickly learned that Division President Don Conklin had decided to move the communications in the matter out of the division to Corporate Communications. This was the latest in a series of frustrations I was having over the direction of the Company in my area of responsibility and my future in the Company.
I had another good dinner at the Airport Marriott
that evening, enjoyed a workout at the hotel fitness center and flew home to
Dec. 21-31, 1995 – To
I drove on Thursday afternoon from our home in
Surrounded by so much uncertainty and frustration at Schering-Plough HealthCare Products and Corporation Headquarters, I was glad to be able to get away from work for over a week with my terrific and loving family.
We spent most of our first day in the condo doing fix-it work. We put insulation on the front door, decorated our Christmas tree, repaired the bathroom door and did some touch-up painting hear and there on the walls and woodwork.
The next day, a Saturday, Casey and I played golf at
the State Park course in chilly weather. I shot a 95 and he shot an 88, with
our score relationship in the usual pattern of the son outplaying his father
now that he is a young man. While we played golf, Betty went to the mall at
On Christmas Eve, we walked about two miles on the
beach of the
After opening Christmas presents (books and clothes for me, $1,000 in cash for Betty to make purchases of her choosing and clothes and golf balls for Casey), I worked on the laptop computer to polish some of my family history and genealogy writing.
On the day after Christmas, Casey and I played golf
at the high-vaunted Kiva Dunes course between
Despite the beauty of the course, its tightness combined with the looseness of my game to result in a score of 100 for me. Casey was the better player as usual, shooting a respectable 88 on a tough course. I was in trouble with my driver on nearly every hole, hitting it beyond the “safe” landing area and into the right rough or the left rough or out-of-bounds. The fee was a bargain $39, including cart, which I thought was a very good price for the course of its quality and fame.
We played with Dr. Jaquant Kale, a professor of
The next morning, the three of us (Betty, Casey and
me) drove to
I took a nap at the hotel that afternoon while Betty
and Casey shopped. That evening, Casey and I paid $7 each to use the hotel’s
exercise and spa facility and had a good workout. The next day, Casey and I
played golf at the Bayou Oaks East Course in
The next day, the three of us enjoyed walking on the
beach. And then on the last Saturday of our stay, Casey and I returned to the
State Park Course, where I shot an 87 and Casey a 94. We enjoyed an excellent
meal at the Outrigger Restaurant at