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Archive for Friday, December 18, 2009

People in the news

December 18, 2009

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Winfrey donates $1.5M to Atlanta school

Atlanta — A private middle school in inner-city Atlanta has received $1.5 million from Oprah Winfrey.

The Ron Clark Academy announced the donation Thursday. The innovative school has struggled to raise money this year amid the sagging economy to pay for its $2.8 million operating budget, which is bankrolled almost entirely by donors.

The school in one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods is hoping to expand its campus by building a cafeteria, gymnasium and theater.

Winfrey, who has had school founder Ron Clark on her show twice, donated $365,000 to the school last December.

Rep: Griffith had skin cancer surgery

Los Angeles — A representative for Melanie Griffith says the actress has had surgery to remove early stages of skin cancer from her face.

Spokeswoman Robin Baum said Thursday the procedure was done early enough to prevent further complications.

The 52-year-old Griffith was left with a black eye after the surgery.

The “Working Girl” star has a 12-year-old daughter with her husband, actor Antonio Banderas.

Griffith also has an adult son and daughter from previous relationships.

She is set to appear on an episode of TV’s “Nip/Tuck” next year.

O’Dell says goodbye to ‘Access Hollywood’

Los Angeles — Nancy O’Dell says she is leaving “Access Hollywood.”

The entertainment reporter said Thursday she will wrap up her 13-year run on the NBC show this week.

Publicist Annie Jeeves says O’Dell is pursuing a new opportunity but did not elaborate.

O’Dell has been a reporter on “Access Hollywood” since the show began in 1996. She has also played a reporter on several TV shows and appeared as a contestant on “Dancing With the Stars.”

O’Dell says she will still host NBC’s coverage of the Tournament of Roses parade on New Year’s Day.

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