Monday, January 14, 2013

Good Day NY synergy: Nets/arena CEO Brett Yormark's media pal Rosanna Scotto is his fiancee's sister (and Fresco by Scotto has space at arena)

When Fox 5 Good Day NY host Rosanna Scotto went over the top for Jay-Z and his arena partners in September 2011, well, I thought it was just giddy TV behavior.

Rosanna Scotto (l.) and Elaina Scotto
Maybe, but it sure didn't hurt that her sister Elaina was involved with Nets/arena CEO Brett Yormark.

Now they're engaged, the Post reported last week. (Elaina Scotto and Brett Yormark were apparently a couple before Rosanna's giddiness, given this February 2011 photo.)

And when Elaina Scotto popped up on a Good Day NY segment 9/27/12 (right) wearing a "Hello Brooklyn" Nets shirt and gushing about going to the Barclays Center to see Jay-Z, well, there was no disclosure about the connection.

The connection is not just personal, it's business ; the Scotto family also operates Fresco by Scotto at Barclays, apparently the only non-Brooklyn restaurant to have a space in "Brooklyn Taste."

Inside scoop

Such closeness pays dividends in the other direction, as well. On Saturday, 10/12/12, Scotto tweeted her enthusiasm about the Barbra Streisand concert:
The connection, business and personal

In Hamptons magazine, Family Bonding with the Scottos, 6/15/12, Elaina Scotto was queried:
What are some of the new projects Fresco by Scotto is launching? 
ES: We have pop-up Frescos at Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, and PricewaterhouseCoopers. We’re associated with New York Water Taxi and Manhattan by Sail to cater all boating events. And did I mention all those lunch boxes with Gray Line bus tours? Our newest deal is with Live Nation to cater backstage at all concert venues in the tri-state area, but what we are really looking forward to is going back to our roots in Brooklyn. Thanks to the special man in my life, Brett Yormark, we will have a strong presence at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Here's some video of the arena establishment; the potato and zucchini chips look good, though they do cost $9.75.

Yormark has supplied Rosanna Scotto with Nets gear for Spike Lee and has appeared other times on Good Day New York.

The New York Post's Page Six reported last Friday, 1/11/13:
Congrats to Elaina Scotto of the Fresco restaurant family, and Brett Yormark, CEO of the Brooklyn Nets and the Barclays Center. Yormark popped the question last month with a 6-carat diamond ring. Elaina — daughter of former Brooklyn longshoremen’s union boss Tony Scotto — said yes. “We’re thrilled,” said Elaina’s sister Rosanna, who co-hosts “Good Day New York” on Fox 5. Both have two kids from previous marriages. “It’s ‘The Brady Bunch 2.0,’ ” Rosanna joked. “They’ll always be entertained and never have a bad meal.”
(By the way, one celebrity 6-carat ring cost $130,000.)

Family history

For the record, "former Brooklyn longshoremen’s union boss" is a limited description, like, say, describing Bruce Ratner as a "philanthropist."

As noted in a New York Times profile 11/16/79 and in Wikipedia, Anthony Scotto, who grew up in Red Hook, in 1957 married Marion Anastasio, whose father was big in the Anastasia crime family and whose uncle Albert Anastasia was boss, later to lead the Gambino crime family.

Scotto, head of the longshoreman's local, raised big bucks for local elected officials and gained significant political power. Rumors of organized crime ties dogged him and his wife;  at a state legislative committee hearing, he and his wife invoked the Fifth Amendment and refused to answer a question about such ties. In 1979, he was indicted on 33 federal bribery and racketeering charges.

Scotto was convicted on most charges, but, thanks in part to numerous letters from prominent people urging leniency, got only five years in prison (the max was 20), and left in 1984 after 39 months.

GangLand columnist Jerry Capeci wrote 10/12/09 in the Huffington Post:
Scotto not only was [racketeer Todo] Anastasio's superior -- both in the mob and the ILA. He was also a powerful political operative and Democratic fundraiser. He endorsed former Attorney General Robert Kennedy for the Senate and was a candidate for Secretary of Labor in the Carter Administration. Then-New York Governor Hugh Carey and two former New York City Mayors were character witnesses for him at his trial.
After his release from prison in 1984, however, Scotto -- who can often be seen at Fresco by Scotto, the upscale East Side eatery his family owns -- hasn't had a single hassle with the law. The feds tell Gang Land that just like John (Junior) Gotti, he's still a Gambino wiseguy. But that kind of talk is cheap.
For years, Rosanna Scotto, daughter of a one-time gangster, shared an anchor slot with Greg Kelly, son of the New York City Police Commissioner. As Leonard Ratner might say, "What a country!"

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