Edelman: Divorce proceedings to have no effect on PR firm

The news that Richard Edelman and his wife may be divorcing after 28 years has fueled speculation about the potential impact on the family's eponymous PR firm, which is the largest in the world.

Richard Edelman
Richard Edelman

NEW YORK: Edelman said Wednesday that any potential divorce settlement between agency global CEO Richard Edelman and his wife of 28 years will not affect the ownership of the firm or parent company DJE Holdings.

The New York Post reported Tuesday night that Edelman’s wife, Rosalind Walrath, is divorcing him, and that lawyers for both sides are negotiating how to split their assets.  

Walrath is a former executive at investment banking firm Keefe Bruyette & Woods.

The proceedings will not have an impact on the firm’s management or its ownership, said Michael Bush, SVP of global marketing and communications at the firm.

Edelman was founded in Chicago in 1952 by Daniel J. Edelman and grew into the largest PR firm in the world.

Son Richard followed Dan into the family firm in 1978 at age 24 and took over as CEO in 1996. Richard has long expressed his wish for the agency to remain privately owned and family run.

The Edelmans have three daughters, two of whom work at the eponymous PR firm. Eldest daughter Margot works in the agency’s Edelman Berland research division. She rejoined the firm in 2013 after a stint at business school. Middle daughter Tory is an account executive in New York City. Youngest child Amanda is studying at Stanford University.

Edelman, the world’s biggest PR agency by a healthy margin, reported global organic revenue growth of 8.2% to $812.3 million for the 2014 calendar year. US revenue was up 7.1% on an organic basis to $482.1 million last year.

The earnings were fueled by new business wins such as Sunkist, Tough Mudder, and Flextronics and organic growth from clients including Unilever, Microsoft, and Johnson & Johnson.

The firm declined additional comment. Edelman also did not comment to the Post.

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