Tom Clancy's widow has Philly roots; Tony Luke lands reality show

Syma Chowdhry has gone from freelancer to permanent reporter for CBS3 and CW57. The Temple grad previously worked as a reporter/anchor in Detroit.
Syma Chowdhry has gone from freelancer to permanent reporter for CBS3 and CW57. The Temple grad previously worked as a reporter/anchor in Detroit.
Posted: October 04, 2013

THE WIDOW of Tom Clancy, the mega-best-selling author who died yesterday at age 66, has roots in Philly.

Alexandra Marie Llewellyn, who went by Alexandra Clancy after she married the thriller author in 1999, is the daughter of former Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Philadelphia CEO J. Bruce Llewellyn, who died in 2010 with an estimated $160 million in the bank.

Llewellyn led a group that bought the company that included Bill Cosby and Julius Erving.

Man, I bet those were fun board meetings.

On Alexandra Clancy's website, LoveAlex.com, her bio states that her father "was a defining influence in her life."

Mrs. Clancy is quite impressive in her own right, designing handbags and running the "Love, Alex" philanthropy project, which helps fund educational programs through the nonprofit website DonorsChoose.org.

At the time of their marriage, Alexandra was 21 and Clancy was 53. She was Clancy's second wife.

Tony Luke on TV

Tony Luke Jr. will be a judge on Spike TV's "Frankenfood."

On the show, NYC chef Josh Capon will travel across the country looking for revolutionary food concepts by pitting amateur chefs against each other to test out their unique culinary flair. The winner will receive $10,000, and their dish will be featured on the menu of a local restaurant. Tony Luke, along with a rotating panel of culinary masters, will sit on the judging panel.

The show will go into production this fall and air in the spring.

* In other TV news, two teams of Sexy Singles (guys vs. girls, naturally) will go head-to-head in an upcoming episode, filmed Monday, of "Philly Pheud," the Mike Missanelli-hosted game show that airs at 11 p.m. Saturdays on PHL17. If you missed the Daily News vs. Inquirer episode from a couple of weeks ago, then you missed a Daily News smackdown that left the Inquirer folks bruised and battered. Good job, Chuck Darrow, Bob Vetrone Jr., Ronnie Polaneczky and Jenice Armstrong.

Moves at CBS3

* CBS3 and the CW57 officially welcomed Syma Chowdhry to the family yesterday as a reporter. Chowdhry has been freelancing with the station since March. Chowdhry, a 2004 Temple grad, returns to the area from Detroit, where she was a reporter/anchor at the CBS stations. Fun fact: Chowdhry speaks Hindi and Urdu.

Dray Clark is leaving CBS3 for New York's ABC affiliate. The Chester native and graduate of Chester High School Academy had been with CBS3 and CW57 since 2008.

So Choice

The Hispanic Choice Awards will be held at the Merriam Theater on Saturday, and the show's got quite the lineup, including bachata star J. Martin and the cast of the Tony Award-winning musical "In the Heights" (now playing at the Walnut Street Theatre). The Living Legend award will go to salsa superstar Eddie Palmieri.

The Elaine Del Valle-hosted event will be broadcast on CBS3 in December.

Bright like Diamond

Power 99's DJ Diamond Kuts is teaming up with Dove to boost the self-esteem of girls both at home and across the country.

Kuts will spin at the kickoff event of the fourth annual Dove Self-Esteem Weekend on top of the Empire State Building tonight, along with her 11-year-old protege Jai Garner ("I hung out with her yesterday after school. I put her by the turntables and she just zoned out," Kuts told me. "She was there for three hours!").

Kuts will then head back home to hang with kids from the Boys & Girls Clubs of Philadelphia, where she'll speak with the kids and spin records with them.

Despite being a music nerd at heart, Kuts just can't put her finger on her fave pump-up tune. "I think being a DJ, it's hard to pick, but one of the songs that popped into my head is 'Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now' [by McFadden & Whitehead]. It's really old, but it's still inspirational," she said. "I think music makes people feel good, in general. I can put a song on that has nothing to do with being inspirational, but it makes me feel so good."


Email: eichelm@phillynews.com

On Twitter: @PhillyGossipDN

Online: ph.ly/DNGossip

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