Week of 9.26.16

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

Children’s Leukemia Foundation

Even though childhood cancer is devastating, supporters of this organization know how to put an upbeat spin on its Afternoon of Hope benefit luncheon. They do it with lots of friendly camaraderie (nearly 200 guests at $65 and $95 tickets), Patti Polina’s eye-popping décor (think MacKenzie Childs), Kathy McIntosh’s colorful display of chance raffle donations ($6,000 proceeds) and compelling speakers. In the Village Club lobby, co-chairs Denice Richmond and Tina Turner greeted arrivals. These included presenting sponsor Karmanos Cancer Institute and gold sponsor Beaumont Children’s Hospital colleagues. The latter were there to support their star – Innovator in Medicine Award recipient Dr. Kate Gowans. Before sitting for lunch, she hugged and wept with Sandy and Bob Ruby, whose 15-year-old son Cameron was her patient before his death a year ago.
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This weeks social light photos…

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Unique food and smokes

Expected to open the first of the month, Ambassador Cigar is a anticipated to be an upscale cigar bar and lounge which will also offer specialty small plates and a private membership club. Owned by Jeff DeSandre , who has been in the local cigar industry for 15 years, there will be a 300-square foot walk-in humidor on site. "We’re planning to offer gourmet small plates, and Cuban sandwiches ...more»

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oakland confidential

October 2016

CAMPAIGN NO-NO: Candidates for public office know — or they should — that it’s a criminal offense to represent themselves as an incumbent when they aren’t. Certainly John McCulloch should be aware as a longtime Republican office holder who lost his job in 2012 as Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner, and was fired, under murky circumstances, in 2014 as Huron-Clinton ...more»
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Daniel Sillman


By Lisa Brody
News Editor
Daniel Sillman
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Daniel Sillman
Photo: Laurie Tennent
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(click for larger version)
03/28/2011 - Daniel Sillman began the Ross School of Business at University of Michigan thinking he'd become an investment banker. But a chance encounter his freshman year with two Michigan football players who became his close friends led him to create Compass Management Group to provide financial management for professional athletes.

Sillman, 22, graduated from Ross in Dec. 2010, on the fast track since he had already begun his company to work with his two friends, Brandon Graham and Brandon Minor, who left U-M as top picks in Dec. 2009 to enter the NFL, and provide them with financial guidance and management once they left school.

"Statistics show that 78 percent of NFL athletes declare bankruptcy or are financially distressed within two years of retirement; it's 65 percent in the NBA within five years," Sillman said. "It's because most athletes lack core financial strength. They hire agents who negotiate their contracts and sponsorship deals, and they might hire someone to open a portfolio for them, and they think they're all set. The word financial advisor throws them. They're often coming from the inner city, and suddenly, they're coming into wealth, like a lottery winner."

While undergrads, Graham and Minor spent holidays and weekends at Sillman's Birmingham home, and Sillman and his father, David, began looking into business managers for them as their need became apparent. "What we realized is that there is a huge presence for entertainers and corporate space, but not for athletes. These athletes should treat themselves the same as someone else with wealth," Sillman said. Just as Graham and Minor had prepared themselves for the NFL by practicing football for years, Sillman realized he had been preparing himself for his career with Compass not only via his business school studies, but at the foot of his father's chair, watching, listening, observing.

"I've been going to the office with my father since I was 5," he said. "I rely on my father for life experience and financial experience."

Compass Management Group, so called because it provides direction, guidance and discipline to athletes, provides attorneys, accountants, insurance consultants, tax planning, bill paying, private banking, estate planning, portfolio management, business consulting and vetting services, and retirement planning.

"The average football career is three years; the average basketball career is four or five years. They could live to be 100. They have to realize they are being compensated for their entire lives, not just their pro careers," Sillman said. He creates a level of transparency and professionalism for the athletes, which now number 11, that he manages. All of the athletes, including Desean Jackson, Jimmy Smith, Manny Harris and Jurrell Casey, have come to him by word-of-mouth through locker rooms.

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