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May 24, 2011  | by: Svenja van den Woldenberg

John Rich

After what Donald Trump called a tough decision, country singer John Rich was named the new “Celebrity Apprentice” on Sunday night.

Rich beat deaf actress Marlee Matlin, who was the favorite to win for some people, winning $250,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. This season, Matlin raised a record setting $1 million for Starkey Hearing Foundation, the charity she was fighting for.

Most of the contestants returned for the live finale, except Reality star Richard Hatch who is back in prison for tax evasion. Before the decision was announced, Rich sang and Matlin signed as they performed the song “For the Kids.”

”I’ve never had to go through something like this… You’ve both been amazing,” said Trump.

During the season, each contestant competed in business related challenges in New York City to win money for their chosen charity. The final challenge for Rich and Matlin was to create promotions for 7-Up’s new “Retro” beverage. Both successfully designed new cans, in-store displays, wrote and produced a commercial, and then unveiled the new product.

The season finale comes in the wake of Trump announcing he will not be running for president, guaranteeing fans that he will be back for another season of “The Apprentice.”

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