Clancy's ex-wife now an O's owner

Couple split shares as part of 1999 divorce settlement

March 24, 2000|By Jon Morgan | Jon Morgan,SUN STAFF

Among the Orioles' off-season changes is one that halved the share of the team held by novelist Tom Clancy and that brought his ex-wife, Wanda Clancy, into the owners box.

Since 1993, Tom Clancy had been the second-biggest shareholder of the team. He put $20 million into the investment group headed by Peter Angelos that bought the team for $173 million in 1993. The best-selling writer -- who grew up in Baltimore -- held about 24 percent of the team.

Last year, he and Wanda Clancy divorced and, as part of the settlement, agreed to evenly divide their shares of the team, said Sheila K. Sachs, Wanda's attorney.

With about 12 percent each, they are tied as the team's second biggest shareholders behind Angelos, Sachs said.

Wanda Clancy's picture appears in the Orioles media guide this year for the first time, alongside fellow co-owners such as Stephen A. Geppi and Harvey H. Meyerhoff. Tom Clancy is there, too, listed as the club's vice chairman of community projects and public affairs.

Angelos put up $43 million for 51 percent of the team in 1993 and assembled an ownership group that included broadcaster and Marylander Jim McKay, tennis star Pam Shriver and moviemaker Barry Levinson.

Absent from the team's list of investors this year is John H. Claster, a member of the 1993 group and the former head of Claster Television. The company, founded by Claster's late mother, Nancy, created Romper Room. He was unavailable for comment.

Wanda was always the baseball fan in the Clancy house, and had been a long-time Orioles season ticket holder, Sachs said. When the team was acquired, the family's share was supposed to be held in a trust owned by them both, but the paperwork was never processed, Sachs said.

"She really is a fan. She's a Marylander," Sachs said.

Both the Clancys own homes in Calvert County, where she was raised and where they lived for many years as a couple. She is board president of the Calverton School, a private prep school.

The Orioles investment is a valuable one. Judging by recent team sales in baseball, the franchise has probably doubled in value since 1993.

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