Martin Bashir is the British-born co-anchor of ABC's long-running Nightline news show. Bashir has a reputation not dissimilar to Barbara Walters, the legendary ABC news interviewer. Both have a reputation for being able to get their subjects to open up more than most others. Bashir, formerly of the BBC, is particularly known for the confessional 1995 interview with Princess Diana that shortly preceded the divorce of the royal couple. His 2003 interview with Michael Jackson was credited with leading police to investigate the singer for criminal activity.
Syrian-born Michael Ansara came to the US as a child and by the time he was in his early 20s, he was acting in Hollywood in a career that has now spanned more than 60 years. Ansara's most memorable roles have been in westerns and science fiction films and television shows and he is one of only three actors to play the same role in three Star Trek series. Fans of Star Trek will remember Ansara's portrayal of Kang in the original Star Trek television series as well as in Star Trek: Deep Space 9 and Star Trek: Voyager.
Two teams of researchers - one in Japan and one in the US - simultaneously have reported a major breakthrough in stem cell research today. Each team has managed to turn human skin cells in to stem cells. The ability to generate stem cells without having to use human embryos could help bypass the ethical concerns that have retarded stem cell research and history may look at today's announcement as sparking a "big bang" in research in to this extremely promising field.
The US team at the University of Wisconsin in Madison was led by Dr. Junying Yu, an American trained scientist who entered the US as a foreign student from China. Congratulations, Dr. Yu!
South African native Elon Musk is Inc. Magazine's Entrepreneur of the Year. Musk came to the US as a university student and later co-founded PayPal, a company sold to eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion. Now worth hundreds of millions of dollars, Musk is not resting on his laurels. He's the CEO and head rocket designer at SpaceX, an aerospace company with plans to begin launching astronauts to rendezvous with the International Space Station as early as 2011. It's more practical purpose is to launch satellites, something the company promises it can do for 25% of the cost of the current going rate.
He is the founder of electric car maker Tesla Motors, a company that Inc. calls "a rare bright spot in the otherwise troubled American auto industry." The company has already sold 600 vehicles at nearly $100,000 each. The company's snazzy Roadster can go from zero to sixty in just four seconds.
Musk is also the founder of solar panel system designer and installer SolarCity, another industry that is taking off as oil prices soar.
Oh, and in his personal life, Musk the father of triplets with five children under the age of 4.
90 year old actress Joan Fontaine and her 91 year old sister Olivia de Havilland were born in Tokyo to British parents and immigrated to America as children. The two are among the last great leading film actresses of the 1930s and 1940s and their careers have both included award-winning roles in many of the greatest films of the 20th century.
In 1941, Joan Fontaine was nominated for an Academy Award for lead actress for her role in Alfred Hitchcock's Rebecca and won the following year for Alfred Hitchcock's film Suspicion.
Two-time Academy Award winner Olivia de Havilland is the last surviving star of Gone With the Wind. If you have never seen the movie, she played Melanie Wilkes, one of the four major roles in the movie. While nominated for Gone With the Wind, it was her roles in To Each His Own (1946) and The Heiress (1949) that earned her the Oscar statues.
The two sisters have a reputation for being rivals and that surely was put to the test when Olivia de Havilland was also nominated for best actress the same year as her sister one (Olivia was nominated for her work in the film Hold Back the Dawn. Sadly, the two have been estranged for most of their adult lives.
Incidentally, while I have wanted to write about both of these actresses for a while, I happened to see the very funny George Cukor film The Women the other night which stars Joan Fontaine along with other legendary actresses like Norma Shearer, Joan Crawford, Paulette Goddard and Rosalind Russell. The all woman casted film is being remade for release next and starring a similar all-star list that includes Meg Ryan, Carrie Fisher, Debra Messing, Annette Bening, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Cloris Leachman, Bette Midler and Candace Bergman.
Greg Siskind is a partner in Siskind Susser's Memphis, Tennessee, office. After graduating magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago. Mr. Siskind is a member of AILA, a board member of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and a member of the ABA, where he serves on the LPM Publishing Board as Marketing Vice Chairman. He is the author of several books, including the J Visa Guidebook and The Lawyer's Guide to Marketing on the Internet. Mr. Siskind practices all areas of immigration law, specializing in immigration matters of the health care and technology industries. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.