President-elect Donald Trump announced today that he intends to nominate billionaire Florida Panthers owner and army veteran Vincent Viola as the Secretary of the Army, a non-cabinet level position. The Panthers said Viola’s appointment will not change anything about the team’s day-to-day operations, which surely must come as a crushing blow to Panthers fans.
Viola, who came from a military family, served in the army’s 101st Airborne Division, but made his money by founding a high-frequency trading firm. He purchased the Panthers in 2013.
From Trump’s statement:
“I am proud to have such an incredibly accomplished and selfless individual as Vincent Viola as our Secretary of the Army,” Trump said in a statement. “Whether it is his distinguished military service or highly impressive track record in the world of business, Vinnie has proved throughout his life that he knows how to be a leader and deliver major results in the face of any challenge.”
The Panthers have said that vice chairman and alternate governor Douglas Cifu will take over Viola’s role as chairman and governor, and the Viola family will remain involved. Here’s Viola’s son, channeling Trump:
Vinny Viola seems pretty keen on the notion that the future of the military lies in cyberwarfare, but I can think of at least one more reason he appeals to Trump: his gross, gaudy Manhattan townhouse.