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Ted Turner Sails; Gorman, Rubenstein Talk Kin: D.C. Scene

Ted Turner, founder of CNN. Photographer: Stephanie Green/Bloomberg
Ted Turner, founder of CNN. Photographer: Stephanie Green/Bloomberg

Sept. 19 (Bloomberg) -- Last night media mogul Ted Turner quoted some of the “mine honor is my life” speech from “Richard II” after he accepted the Lone Sailor Award from the U.S. Navy Memorial at its annual gala.

Turner, the 74-year-old founder of CNN, received the award for applying the values he learned in the Coast Guard to his career and philanthropy.

The other honorees at the National Building Museum were Dan Akerson, the chairman and chief executive officer of General Motors Co. and a Navy veteran, and P.X. Kelley, the 28th commandant of the Marine Corps.

“We share a common understanding of service,” said Akerson.

Goat-cheese salad and beef tenderloin were served after the playing of songs of the marine service branches.

A moment of silence was observed for the Navy Yard shooting victims, who were slain just a short distance away.

Kelley, 84, said he has struggled with illness recently but was determined to attend the gala. “The mind is still a steel trap,” he said, after pushing a walker to get to the podium.

Kay Bailey Hutchison, the former senator from Texas, received the 2013 Naval Heritage Award for her leadership on issues affecting the military.

It’s James

Don’t call James Gorman “Jim.”

The chairman and chief executive officer of Morgan Stanley told David Rubenstein yesterday that when he was growing up in Australia, his mother always insisted he be called “James.”

“You do what your mother says,” Gorman said. “You never cross your mother.”

The guest of honor at a luncheon of the Economic Club of Washington, D.C., Gorman looked out upon a sea of gray suits packing the Ritz-Carlton ballroom as he shared the stage with Rubenstein, the club’s president.

Family seemed to be a recurring theme among the questions from Rubenstein, an only child. He was intrigued by Gorman’s growing up as one of 12 siblings.

The large brood forced Gorman “to relate to people who are sometimes difficult,” he said. “It’s just like today.”

Gorman still goes to Australia for reunions with the 71 people in his immediate family, including “32 nieces and nephews” at last count.

On the subject of how he and his wife invest their money, Gorman said, “We’re pretty boring.” He described their portfolio as “modest and unspectacular.” He did allow that they have municipal bonds and invest in a “small biotech fund,” which prompted Rubenstein to ask why they didn’t include private equity.

“You can never have enough private equity,” joked the Carlyle Group LP co-founder.

No Recession

Gorman was optimistic on the U.S. economic outlook. “I’m more bullish than most Americans,” he said. “I don’t think it’s a recession. I think we’re in strong fundamental shape.”

French Ambassador Francois Delattre, BET Holdings LLC Chairman Debra Lee, and Democratic lobbyist Jack Quinn were among those present for the grilled beef medallion and Lyonnaise potatoes meal, with New York cheesecake for dessert.

At the start of the program, Rubenstein gave away $400,000 in grants to 10 Washington nonprofits in honor of the club’s 25th anniversary.

(Stephanie Green is a writer and photographer for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Any opinions expressed are her own.)

Muse highlights include Jason Harper on cars, Lance Esplund on art.

To contact the writer on this story: Stephanie Green in Washington at sgreen57@bloomberg.net or on Twitter @stephlgreen.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff at mhoelterhoff@bloomberg.net.

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