Daniel Edelman, PR Pioneer, Dies at 92

Founder of Eponymous Agency Suffered Heart Failure

By Anne Cohen

Published January 15, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Daniel J. Edelman, founder of the huge public relations that bears his name, has died. He was 92.

Daniel J. Edelman
edelman public relations
Daniel J. Edelman

Edelman, who retired in 1996, passed away from heart failure on Tuesday morning, according to the Chicago Tribune.

A graduate of Columbia College and the Columbia Journalism School, Edelman was a newspaper editor and reporter before being drafted during World War II. He worked in the intelligence division, analyzing German propaganda for the Allies, Ad Week reports.

Edelman worked for as a publicist for Toni, a hair care company now a division of Gillette, when he moved to Chicago and started his own firm in 1952, Ad Week reports. His initial client list included such fledgling companies as Sarah Lee and KFC.

Edelman also contributed to the popularization of celebrity endorsements to sell products and came up with the Butterball Turkey Talk Line in 1981.

The Edelman agency has 66 office offices and 4,500 employees around the world, as well as affiliates in more than 30 cities. Edelman’s son, Richard Edelman, has served as the company’s new president and CEO since his father retired in 1996.

The company honored its founder with a picture on the front page of its website, along with a brief statement that read: “There will never be another Dan Edelman — indomitable, ever modest, always resilient, ready for the next challenge. His story inspires us all.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
  • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
  • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
  • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
  • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
  • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
  • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
  • What do you think?
  • "To everyone who is reading this article and saying, “Yes, but… Hamas,” I would ask you to just stop with the “buts.” Take a single moment and allow yourself to feel this tremendous loss. Lay down your arms and grieve for the children of Gaza."
  • Professor Dan Markel, 41 years old, was found shot and killed in his Tallahassee home on Friday. Jay Michaelson can't explain the death, just grieve for it.
  • Employees complained that the food they received to end the daily fast during the holy month of Ramadan was not enough (no non-kosher food is allowed in the plant). The next day, they were dismissed.
  • Why are peace activists getting beat up in Tel Aviv? http://jd.fo/s4YsG
  • Backstreet's...not back.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.