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03-01-2006, 02:30 PM
Wednesday, March 1, 2006
Little goes long way for investors

Harry Fath doesn't expect big profits from his new investment in the Reds, or even a lot of perks.

But the ownership unit he bought in the team under new Reds chief executive officer Bob Castellini still means a lot to him.

"My first conscious memory of anything was my dad taking me and my brother to a doubleheader at Crosley Field," said Fath, whose company owns apartment buildings. "I've never forgotten that.

"The main reason I'm doing this is, I want ownership to be local. I love Bobby Castellini. I have great confidence in Bobby Castellini."

Fath is one of more than a half dozen new Reds investors listed in the team's 2006 media guide.

The Reds have not identified the entire list of investors, and there could be others who have not received approval from Major League Baseball.

Monday night, many of the investors gathered at Great American Ball Park for an ownership dinner. Those identified Tuesday include:

Larry Sheakley, owner of the Sheakley Group in Springdale.

Ralph Drees, Kenton County judge-executive and chairman of home-builder Drees Co., and his son David, who is the company's president and CEO.

"Frankly, I'm not all that big of a sports fan, but David wanted to do it," Drees said. "We've never done anything like this. We've always kept to our knitting."

Jack Wyant, managing director of Blue Chip Venture Co.

Car dealer Jeff Wyler, who says he sold tickets to the Crosley Field bleachers to help work his way through college.

"You don't get an opportunity too often to be part of something like the Cincinnati Reds," Wyler said Tuesday. "I was happy when Bob called."

Jeff Gendell, a Cincinnati native who works in Greenwich, Conn.

George Vincent of Dinsmore & Shohl, the Reds' new corporate counsel. Both Vincent and the firm are investors in a group that bought an ownership unit. He would not identify the other members of that group.

Local investor Howard Ragland.

Investors previously identified include a group of minority investors that includes Ed Rigaud, former president of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, and Ross Love of Blue Chip Enterprises. Also, Procter & Gamble Co. chairman and chief executive A.G. Lafley and radio executive Bobby Lawrence have confirmed their investments.

"It doesn't get any better than being an owner of the Cincinnati Reds," Vincent said. "It's the coolest thing in the world, isn't it?"