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Associate Professor Emeritus-in-Service Ted Spiegel passes away

Spiegel is namesake of the Medill IMC Spiegel Digital and Database Research Initiative

Ted Spiegel
Ted Spiegel

Ted Spiegel, associate professor emeritus-in-service and namesake of the Medill IMC Spiegel Digital and Database Research Initiative, died Saturday, May 11.

He was an integral part of Medill for decades, joining the full time faculty in 1987. Spiegel took on emeritus-in-service status in 1999 and has been active at Medill since then, most recently through the research initiative that bears his name. He helped envision and launch the initiative in 2011.

"A straight talking, always pioneering, fiercely curious, intrepid, generous and beloved man who has left significant and lasting footprints on Northwestern, Medill and the IMC programs," said Associate Professor Tom Collinger, executive director of the Spiegel Research Initiative and senior director of Medill's distance learning initiative. "My colleagues have all called this 'a sad day,' and I'm among those at the front of the line sharing in this loss. His colleagues, former students and friends are so much more enriched because of him, and we hope to make him and [his wife] Audrey proud as we carry his inspiration forward."

Spiegel was instrumental in developing the IMC curriculum and establishing Medill’s graduate direct marketing program -- the first in the nation -- where he expanded direct marketing as a discipline of study. He developed the fourth quarter professional residency, which is now called immersion quarter and is a key part of Medill’s IMC program.

“Ted mentored many faculty members and students,” said IMC Professor Edward Malthouse, research director at the Spiegel Research Initiative. “He built the direct marketing program at Medill and has played a key role in our department for the past 25 years. Up until a few weeks ago, he was challenging the IMC faculty to improve teaching with the use of new technologies and teaching approaches. We will miss his vision for IMC education and research. This is a sad day.”

Many from Medill and the wider Northwestern community will remember Spiegel as a spirited advocate for the marketing discipline and an early adopter of the newest technology.

“Ted Spiegel’s enthusiasm for learning and teaching led to innovations that will influence not only the direction of IMC but larger parts of the University,” said Brian Nielsen, interim manager for faculty support services at Northwestern University Information Technologies. “He understood that new communications technologies were having an enormous impact on his field, and helped bring those technologies into the classroom.”

The founder and president of Spiegel Marketing, he worked as a consultant to businesses, government entities and non-profits since 1987. Spiegel’s expertise in catalog marketing and business strategy helped his clients, which ranged from Walt Disney to Reader’s Digest to the Library of Congress.

Spiegel earned his bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College in 1953 and an MBA from Dartmouth’s Amos Tuck School of Business Administration in 1954. He served as first lieutenant in the U.S. Army Ordnance Corps from 1954 to 1956. 

Spiegel is survived by his wife, Audrey. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 23, at Northwestern's Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, Evanston. Parking for the service is available at the city garage on the corner of Clark and Chicago in Evanston and on surrounding streets.

Memorial contributions may be made to: 
The Spiegel Digital and Database Research Initiative 
Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications
1845 Sheridan Road
Evanston, IL 60208