Marshall Loeb, an editor, columnist and TV commentator who built a lasting legacy at Time, Fortune, and Money magazines and was widely seen as the founder of modern business journalism, was well known for his innovative editorial leadership during a career that spanned more than half a century.
To honor his legacy, Michael and Margaret Loeb, his son and daughter, have funded the Marshall R. Loeb Visiting Professorship in Digital News and Audience Engagement at Stony Brook University’s School of Journalism. The Loeb Professorship will be awarded to an outstanding journalist and will engage students and faculty in the practice and power of digital journalism.
“Marshall Loeb worked largely during a period when print was still king, but he always embraced the future,” School of Journalism Dean Howard Schneider said. “Long after his contemporaries retired, he was writing columns for emerging, business websites. I think he would relish the new challenges and opportunities journalists face today as we confront the digital economy.”
Called by The New York Times, “one of the most influential magazine editors in the magazine industry,” Loeb started his career as a sports reporter at 15. He covered the reconstruction of post-war Germany as a reporter for United Press International, and interviewed many world leaders for Time Inc., including Nelson Mandela, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Margaret Thatcher. He led Time Magazine’s coverage of the Watergate scandal, created its first “Women of the year” cover, and interviewed every sitting president during his tenure as a magazine editor, including Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton. As a Managing Editor, he made Money the fastest-growing magazine in America and helped Fortune earn more operating profit in 8 years than it had in its previous 56 years combined. Leaving Time Inc. at the mandatory retirement age of 65 did not end Marshall Loeb’s contributions to the world of journalism. He became editor of The Columbia Journalism Review, appeared as a daily commentator on CBS Radio Network, wrote a series of books on personal finance, and appeared as an on-screen analyst for Quicken, TurboTax and other software programs. Loeb, who passed away last December, won every major award in economic and financial journalism and was chosen by a panel of his peers as one of the 100 most important and influential business journalists of the 20th century.
“My father is well known for his contribution to personal finance and journalism, but he was also the champion of society’s under-served: women, the economically disadvantaged, and first-generation Americans. Stony Brook well serves these groups and he would be proud to help them now just as he did during his remarkable life,” Michael Loeb said.
A national search is now underway to identify top candidates for the inaugural professorship. In addition to teaching, the Loeb professor will deliver an annual lecture open to the public and act as a bridge between the journalism school and industry to help students stay abreast of emerging trends. Students also will have access to the digital expertise developed by leaders at Loeb Enterprises.
“Stony Brook is fortunate to have the support of Michael and Margaret Loeb, Marshall’s highly accomplished children,” Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr. said. “Their career paths exemplify the spirit we embrace at the university by combining innovation with imagination and a keen sense of purpose. The support of a visiting professorship in the School of Journalism marks a clear step forward for students to explore the importance of digital news and audience engagement.”
The Stony Brook University School of Journalism is the only undergraduate school of journalism in the State University of New York higher education system and has graduated nearly 400 students since its inception in 2006.
“At a time when journalism has never been more important, this gift will offer students the tools to tell important stories to more engaged audiences,” Schneider said. “Marshall Loeb would have approved. As he once noted, ‘To bring the truth to the public…that is a wonderful, outstanding thing.’”