The Presidential Daily Brief


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    Marcus Samuelsson Curates the PDB

    He’s putting you on a news diet. OZY couldn’t be more pleased to welcome celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson to curate today’s PDB. The Ethiopian-born, Swedish-raised, Harlem-based restaurateur graces the screen as a judge on America’s favorite cooking shows and dazzles your taste buds at Red Rooster, Streetbird Rotisserie and other hot spots both in the U.S. and abroad. The award-winning Samuelsson is on fire, including the recent publication of The Red Rooster Cookbook. Today he joins the ranks of past PDB curators like Arianna Huffington, Bill Gates, Tony Blair, Michael Che and Sen. Kamala Harris.



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    In Polarized America, Can a Centrist Party Rise From the Ashes?

    Here’s an interesting read that imagines what the United States would look like with a large third party. Take a look at France: Emmanuel Macron won the presidency with a party he founded just over a year ago. Is it possible, within our extremely divided country, that the right and the left can satisfy the majority, or will it take a new centrist party to stabilize our nation’s politics? It’s an open question, but there’s already some momentum behind reaching for a middle ground. 

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    Restaurateur Chooses Right Side of History With Name Change

    What’s in a name? For a restaurant, the name and concept can be everything — and changing a name can be costly. But celebrity chef Tom Colicchio decided to take the risk to separate himself and his brand from a name with historically racist connotations. When Colicchio’s newest restaurant, Fowler & Wells, opened last fall, the name echoed that of a scientific institute whose founders propagated racist ideas. I applaud Colicchio and his team for choosing to change the name to Temple Court once they’d discovered what lay beneath the original designation. 

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    Big Tech Squeezes Onto the Small Screen

    Welcome to the future. Media is changing rapidly, as always, and I find it fascinating to read about how big tech companies like Apple, Google and Facebook plan to break into television. It’s a smart move considering the large audiences already tuned into those platforms, though some TV industry insiders have expressed concern over the enormous amount of money that’s about to be injected into the medium. For now we’ll have to wait and see what kind of programming these major players serve up — not to mention the kind of culinary entertainment they dish out.


  5. Deadly Houston Flooding, Trumped Justice and Open Season

    Know This: Flooding from Hurricane Harvey has killed five and and trapped numerous Houston area residents, 1,000 of whom have been rescued as the storm lingers over Texas. Mixed martial artist Conor McGregor, exceeding expectations in Las Vegas, survived 10 rounds in the boxing ring before his technical knockout, giving Floyd Mayweather Jr. his 50th win. And King Felipe VI joined hundreds of thousands of his fellow Spaniards in Barcelona to march against terrorism Saturday.

    Adjudicate This: “The president asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions whether it would be possible for the government to drop the criminal case against Arpaio, but was advised that would be inappropriate.” — Washington Post report on President Donald Trump’s effort to help longtime political ally and former Arizona sheriff Joseph Arpaio, whom Trump pardoned Friday. 

    Swing at This: America’s top tennis tournament, the U.S. Open, begins tomorrow. To help prepare you, OZY asked two of the sport’s legends, Chrissie Evert and John McEnroe, to discuss some of the noteworthy contenders in the wide-open women’s competition.


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    How a Pair of Wool Shoes Took Over Silicon Valley

    Hoodies have had their day. The tech world’s uniform has shifted — and for the moment venture capitalists, startup founders and entrepreneurs have settled on gray wool Allbirds sneakers. According to the brand’s origin myth, the shoes were created by a former New Zealand soccer star who was turned off by the corporate world’s uncomfortable footwear. It’s no surprise Allbirds is taking over with its knit-wool, machine-washable sneaker-like kicks. I also appreciate that the brand is co-helmed by forward-thinking, clean-technology entrepreneur Joey Zwillinger.


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    Designers, Artists and Fashionistas Are Rebranding the South Bronx

    Who needs to be the new Brooklyn? The South Bronx’s denizens — up-and-coming fashion designers and media entrepreneurs among them — are trying to harness inevitable gentrification to create a future for the area they call home. I love watching what’s taking place in the birthplace of hip-hop and graffiti. The Bronx has a lot of history, and it’s exciting to see what it’s turning into. It’s a classic New York story: engaging, ever changing and inspiring. My hope is that this neighborhood remains inclusive for all to enjoy.

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    One Chicago School Is Creating Jobs in Order to Educate

    The Midwest’s growing more than corn. Chicago is an incredible city, home to innovative artist-activists like Theaster Gates, and Chicago Technology Academy (ChiTech) is yet another example of creative problem-solving. The school’s Real-World Learning program connects every senior to a full-time internship, which not only puts them on a solid path toward a possible career, but also teaches them life skills for future success. ChiTech’s solution could help fill the talent void in the tech sector — and close the gap between classroom experience and real-world expectations.

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    This 27-Year-Old Singer Puts New Life Into Old Songs

    She’s a Miami native, but her tradition is pure jazz. Fellow Harlemite Cécile McLorin Salvant is one of my favorite musicians, and I love how her career has blossomed over the years. In this article, readers can see how she embraces the contradictions of the classic songs she sings, what inspires her and some of the twists and turns on her path to success — including the fact that when she first heard Billie Holiday sing, she felt frightened. I can’t wait to hear her forthcoming double album, Dreams and Daggers.

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    The Recently Recognized Slave Behind Jack Daniel’s

    That drink you just ordered comes with a past. This is a great story that delves into the not-so-well-known history of Jack Daniel’s whiskey — and Nearest Green, the slave who taught the company founder to distill it. I hope this trend of honoring the people of color who underpinned so many advances continues and wonder what other similar unsung heroes of the food and drink world will come to light in the future.