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Si Newhouse, Jr., chairman of Condé Nast, dies at 89

Samuel Irving “Si” Newhouse, Jr., joined Condé Nast in 1961 after it had been acquired by his father, Samuel I. Newhouse in 1959. He served as chairman of Condé Nast beginning in 1975.

 

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Screenshot: condenast.com

Among many highlights of his time as chairman, he oversaw the global expansion of Vogue, the relaunch of Vanity Fair, the launch of Allure, Self and Teen Vogue magazines, and the acquisition of Architectural Digest, The New Yorker, Golf Digest and Wired.

“Today, we lost a giant,” said Bob Sauerberg, president and CEO, Condé Nast. “Si embodied creativity, curiosity and a commitment to excellence unlike any other, and he will forever be remembered as the man who built the most influential media empire in the world. We are honored to work in this incredible business he created, and will strive to emulate his courage and wisdom.”

“Si Newhouse was the most extraordinary leader,” said Anna Wintour, Condé Nast artistic director and editor-in-chief, Vogue. “Wherever he led, we followed, unquestioningly, simply because he put the most incredible faith in us. Si never looked at data, or statistics, but went with his instincts, and expected us to do the same. He was quick to encourage us to take risks, and effusive in his praise when they paid off. There was nothing showy about the way Si led though. This humble, thoughtful, idiosyncratic man, possibly the least judgmental person I have ever known, preferred family, friends, art, movies, and his beloved pugs over the flashiness of the New York media world, and his personality shaped the entire company; it might have been a huge global entity, yet one felt a deep, personal connection to it, all because of him.”

“Si Newhouse wasn’t incidentally in the magazine business,” said David Remnick, editor-in-chief, The New Yorker. “He loved magazines, he loved everything about them – from the conception of new publications to the beauty and rigor of the latest issue – and that passion, that commitment to excellence, free expression, and imagination radiated in every direction.”

“With Si’s passing, the big chapters in the history of magazines—as written by men like Si and Henry Luce—will have come to an end,” said Graydon Carter, editor-in-chief, Vanity Fair. “Si’s vision, and the soft manner in which he executed it, will be long remembered in these hallways and on newsstands around the world. He was a one-off in an age of carbon copies.”

Working with his cousin, Jonathan Newhouse, Si grew Condé Nast’s international presence into a Wired, Condé Nast Traveler, Tatler and Vanity Fair.

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