CHICAGO: Ruth Edelman, board member and deputy chairman of DJE Holdings and wife of the late Edelman founder Daniel Edelman, died Sunday morning at the University of Chicago Medical Center. She was 84.
Ruth and Daniel Edelman were married for 59 years prior to his death in January. She was appointed deputy chairman of DJE Holdings the following month, and she provided counsel to the company and president and CEO Richard Edelman in the role. In 2010, the firm named its integrated marketing shop “Ruth” after her.
She is survived by a sister, Rosalie Aronin; a daughter, Renee; sons Richard and John; and granddaughters Margot, Tory, and Amanda. Richard Edelman is the eponymous firm's global chief executive, while Renee Edelman is an SVP and John Edelman is MD of its global engagement and CSR initiative.
Aside from providing counsel to the firm, she was also a prominent mental health advocate, supporting organizations such as the National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association. In 1994, Edelman received the group's Jan Fawcett Humanitarian Award, becoming the first person outside of the medical community to do so. She was also an advocate for the Committee for Economic Growth of Israel, the Save the Children Foundation, and the Chicago Project for Violence Prevention, and she raised money for the Lyric Opera Company and the Chicago Art Institute. Edelman also helped former Sen. Charles Percy (R-IL) organize community events and was special events chair for the state of Illinois under former Gov. Jim Thompson, a Republican.
She was a graduate of the University of Wisconsin.
“Ruth was a part of Edelman from day one,” Richard Edelman said in a statement. “My parents created our business and established our culture. My mother had the poise and grace of a sought-after hostess, with the wit and wisdom of a savvy businesswoman. She charmed many a guest into becoming a client.”
Shiva will be held at the Casino Club in Chicago, and the memorial service will take place at the Temple Sinai in the city. The funeral will be private.Donations can be made to Leukemia Research at the University of Chicago Medical Center or the National Depressive and Manic-Depressive Association.