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Saints, Pelicans owner Gayle Benson proves to be a steady hand year 1

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; Trainer Tom Amoss would have understood if Gayle Benson, just weeks after burying her husband of 14 years last spring, had wanted to skip the walk from the barn to the paddock with Lone Sailor, the thoroughbred they were racing ...

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Old 03-16-2019, 06:27 AM   #1
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Trainer Tom Amoss would have understood if Gayle Benson, just weeks after burying her husband of 14 years last spring, had wanted to skip the walk from the barn to the paddock with Lone Sailor, the thoroughbred they were racing in the Kentucky Derby.

At the time, a ceremonial walk before a horse race — even one as big as the Derby — didn't much compare to the grief of her loss and the challenge that lay before her: taking the reins of the New Orleans Saints and the rest of a billion-dollar business empire Tom Benson amassed over his lifetime.

But when Amoss arrived at the barn that day, Benson was already there. She was ready to trudge through the rainsoaked, mudlogged track at Churchill Downs with her horse, as the huge crowd expected, and as Tom would have done.



“The lesson that I probably already knew — but got to see first-hand — is that she wasn’t going to be afraid to get her hands dirty,” Amoss said. “Is it different than Mr. Benson? … Let’s say their styles are similar.”

By all accounts, after her husband’s death at age 90 a year ago Friday, Gayle Benson has so far shown a steady hand at the controls of the business empire her husband spent a lifetime developing.

Those who work closest with her said in interviews this week the results speak for themselves:

Lone Sailor and other horses in the stable have either won or placed highly in important races in their current season.

The Saints would very likely have made their second trip to the Super Bowl had it not been for one of the worst officiating flubs in NFL history.

In August, Dixie Beer, which the Bensons acquired two years ago, launched plans to open a brewery and restaurant in New Orleans East that they hope will revitalize both a brand and an area hit hard by Hurricane Katrina.

The big-money philanthropic donations that became staples of her marriage to Benson have continued in a big way, with Jesuit High School receiving $5 million to overhaul its gymnasium last month and Second Harvest Food Bank on Friday getting $3.5 million for assistance in its fight against hunger.

She has left in place the team of confidants and executives that Tom Benson, during years of advanced planning, entrusted with helping her following his death.

And while there are more challenges ahead, most notably with the New Orleans Pelicans amid the coming loss of star player Anthony Davis and long-simmering questions about their future in the Crescent City, those confidants say Benson has already shown an ability to fill her late husband's shoes.

more on The Advocate

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Old 03-16-2019, 01:52 PM   #2
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Re: Saints, Pelicans owner Gayle Benson proves to be a steady hand year 1

Aside from all the court room drama she acts like a classy lady. As long as she lets the FO do their thing we should be just fine. Tom Benson left a strong organization for Gayle Benson to run. RIP!
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Old 03-16-2019, 09:33 PM   #3
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Re: Saints, Pelicans owner Gayle Benson proves to be a steady hand year 1

Just don’t decide to up and move
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