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Al Lerner
Born May 8, 1933(1933-05-08)
New York City, New York, USA
Died October 2, 2002 (aged 69)
Cleveland, Ohio, USA
Occupation businessman, CEO, Entrepreneur

Alfred "Al" Lerner (May 8, 1933—October 23, 2002) was a United States businessman. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Lerner was the son of Jewish-Russian immigrants. He attended Columbia University. He served in the Marines from 1955 to 1957.

Lerner became chairman of MBNA Bank investing 800 million of his own money in the initial public offering (IPO) of the corporation. He also owned the Cleveland Browns of the National Football League, after purchasing the rights to the team in 1998. Prior to that in 1995 he assisted his friend at the time Art Modell, former owner of the Browns, in moving Modell's NFL franchise rights from Cleveland to Baltimore. After his death, his son, Randy took over the Browns franchise. Lerner's initials are stitched on the shoulders of the Browns' jerseys.

Lerner donated approximately twenty-five million dollars toward the construction of a new Columbia University student center in 1999, which was named Alfred Lerner Hall in his honor. In 2007, Columbia announced it would honor Lerner's military service in the United States Marine Corps with a plaque to be placed in Lerner Hall. A United States Marine himself, Lerner's estate also donated 10 million dollars toward the construction of the National Museum of the Marine Corps.


  • Had a tribute to him at the end of a season 8 episode of The Drew Carey Show called "The Dawn Patrol".
  • The College of Business and Economics is named after him at the University of Delaware.
  • Was President of the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and donated over $100 million to the hospital system.
  • Lerner was proud of being a U.S. Marine and flew a Marine Corps flag atop the stadium during the entire time he owned the Browns. Additionally, Lerner flew the Cleveland Browns football team flag at all MBNA America corporate sites along with the American flag and State flags.

External links

Preceded by
Art Modell in 1995 when (team operations were suspended)
Cleveland Browns principal owner
Succeeded by
Randy Lerner


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