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Born: Sept. 28, 1941, in Chicago
Current job: Chairman and CEO of Tribune, since December 2007
Self-assigned nickname: Grave Dancer
Estimated worth: $6 billion
Family: Parents fled Poland to avoid persecution in 1939, arriving in Chicago via Russia and Japan
Education: BA in political science, University of Michigan, 1963; law degree, Michigan, 1966
First business: Founded a real estate company, Equity Group Investments, in 1968 after managing apartment buildings
Hobbies: Motorcycling with his "Zell's Angels" biker buddies; jetting to one of his four homes with his third wife, Helen
Number of #$%&-bombs dropped in first 10 minutes of talk with Los Angeles Times staff: 6
Extravagances: Private chef for midday meal; spending up to $1 million on his annual holiday gift, a custom-made music box and accompanying online video