|Birth Day:||December 8, 1931|
Founder and CEO of Top Rank, a Las Vegas-based professional boxing promotion company that promoted Muhammad Ali in the 1960's. His office was raided by the FBI in 2004 as a result of allegations that his company had fixed a boxing match.
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He worked as an attorney in the United States Department of Justice after graduating cum laude from Harvard Law School.
In 1962, Arum was assigned by the Department of Justice to confiscate proceeds from the September 25, 1962 Sonny Liston vs. Floyd Patterson world heavyweight boxing title fight; during which he met closed-circuit television (CCTV) pioneer and former Leo Burnett & Co. vice-president Lester M. Malitz (1907 – July 24, 1965) of Lester M. Malitz Inc. Malitz was the promoter of the 1965 Terrell–Chuvalo bout, during which he retained Arum to represent him. In 1966, subsequent to a suggestion by Jim Brown, whom Arum had secured for Malitz as the fight's announcer, Arum became a boxing promoter. In 2016, Brown recalled that Arum had seen a televised fight in 1965, as "The first fight Arum ever saw was Terrell–Chuvalo, and he watched that from the television truck." Arum credits Brown with introducing him to Muhammad Ali, and Ali with teaching him how to be a boxing promoter.
Following the 1963 assassination of John F. Kennedy and his Justice Department service under Robert F. Kennedy; Arum joined Wall Street law firm Phillips, Nizer, Benjamin, Krim & Ballon, where he researched Kennedy's assassination for senior partner Louis Nizer, author of the Forward to the Warren Commission Report.
Following the 1963 suicide of Washington Heights Savings and Loan Association president Floyd Cramer, hours after his indictment for being the "mastermind" of a mortgage tax-evasion scheme; Arum recalled, "I knew then that I wasn't cut out to be a prosecutor." Arum continued to practice civil law until dissolving his office in 1979.
Arum appeared as corrupt DEA agent, "Stokes", in the 1975 film, The Marijuana Affair, at the behest of his friend, Jamaican-born boxing promoter, filmmaker, bookie, and horse-racing aficionado Lucien Chen (June 6, 1928 – December 16, 2015); has advocated for the decriminalization of cannabis; and, in a 2017 interview, stated that he had started smoking it in 1966, declaring, "Cannabis is good for you! It's these damn people during the Nixon administration that really put cannabis into the position where it was a drug like heroin and cocaine and that was wrong" and adding that "in a lot of ways, marijuana is better for the athlete as pain medication than the drugs.” In a 2017 VICE interview (which erroneously reports film producer Chen as Shen); Arum was also quoted as saying, "I think the NFL is gonna revise its policy on marijuana and I think everybody should. It was the Nixon administration that demonized marijuana, to the real harm of a lot of people, particularly people who have terminal cancer. Marijuana can be a very therapeutic thing."
During the 1980s, Arum became a driving force behind the sport, rivaling Don King. Arum organized superfights including Marvin Hagler vs. Roberto Durán and Hagler vs. Thomas Hearns. Arum mounted the Hagler–John Mugabi, Hearns–James Shuler doubleheader in Las Vegas in April, 1986. After the Hearns–Shuler fight, Shuler, who had lost by knockout in the first round, showed up at Arum's hotel room to thank him for the opportunity to fight Hearns.
In 1991, he married Lovee duBoef with whom he has two stepchildren; Todd duBoef, President of Top Rank and Dena duBoef, vice president of Top Rank. Arum is a close friend and business partner of billionaire casino tycoon, and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp, Sheldon Adelson.
In 1994, he was involved with John Daly for the High Noon in Hong Kong boxing event. The fights were called off at the last minute when Barry Hearn scuttled the bout by withdrawing his fighters, when no purses were forthcoming from Top Rank.
Arum was inducted into the International Boxing Hall Of Fame in 1999. In 2003 he was inducted into the Southern California Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.
In 2000, citing extortion; Arum voluntarily testified to having paid IBF president Robert W. "Bobby" Lee, Sr. $100,000 in two installments in 1995, as the first half of a $200,000 bribe, through "middleman, Stanley Hoffman", adding that Lee had first demanded $500,000 to approve the Schulz–Foreman fight, but had settled for the lesser amount of $200,000 (half of which was never paid). Lee was indicted for racketeering in 1999, but convicted of money laundering and tax evasion in 2000. Following his testimony, Arum was sanctioned and fined $125,000 by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. Boxing promoters Cedric Kushner and Dino Duva also admitted to making similar payments to Lee.
Oscar De La Hoya successfully sued Arum and was legally released from his contract with Top Rank in January 2001. Following years of acrimony; he and De La Hoya publicly salvaged their relationship.
In 2003, Arum complained about the judging in the September 13 bout between Oscar De La Hoya and Sugar Shane Mosley and suggested there was a vendetta against him from a member of the Nevada State Commission that led to De La Hoya's loss. Arum later made an apology for the remark which commission chairman Luther Mack accepted.
In 2007, Yahoo Sports reported that, "Floyd Mayweather Jr. essentially accused Arum, who promoted him from the beginning of his career in 1996 until 2006, of underpaying him, exploiting his talents and manipulating officials." Mayweather, who also became a boxing promoter, stated to Yahoo Sports in 2015, "I don't have anything bad to say about Bob Arum."
In 2009, Arum defended Antonio Margarito when he lost his boxing license in the US state of California on charges of illegal hand wraps, implied it was racially motivated and stated that Top Rank would not come back to the state of California until the issue was rectified.
In 2009, Arum was accused of racism by Bas Rutten, for calling UFC fans "skinhead white guys."
Arum has been married twice. He had three children with his first wife: Richard, Elizabeth, and John. His son, environmental lawyer John Arum (1961–2010), fell to his death in 2010 while climbing the north face of Storm King, a mountain in North Cascades National Park; he is most remembered for his meticulous representation of Native American tribal rights.
As a boxing promoter, Arum had been involved in many feuds and controversies, including a forty-year feud with Don King, with whom he has co-promoted several fights. UFC president Dana White has also been a vocal critic, and the two have engaged in a protracted and acerbic public feud; in 2018, White briefly became a rival boxing promoter.
On 11 August 2020, Arum was interviewed by iFL TV's Kugan Kassius, who is of Sri Lankan descent. When Kassius asked Arum whether he sunbathed to maintain his tan, Arum replied 'I read outside. That's why I'm looking almost as dark as you are'.
Currently, Bob Arum is 89 years, 7 months and 28 days old. Bob Arum will celebrate 90th birthday on a Wednesday 8th of December 2021.
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