Class of 1952B
Inducted 1998 Inaugural Group
Carl Spielvogel began his professional life as a copy boy, became a reporter and columnist at The New York Times, was one of the nation’s leading global business and marketing executives, and is a former United States ambassador to the Slovak Republic. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, he is one of the nation’s leading global businessmen and has conducted trade and commerce in 55 countries during a career of more than 40 years.
As a graduate of the Baruch School, as the downtown business division of City College was then known, and as a former ambassador, he wanted to interest honor students at his alma mater in pursuing careers in the U.S. Department of State. In 2008, he funded a program at Baruch College, as it is now known, to honor the service of former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who earned his undergraduate degree at City College in 1958. The program provides that two summer interns are chosen each year to serve at the State Department.
|With his wife, the writer Barbaralee Diamonstein-Spielvogel.|
Following his graduation, he continued at The Times, became a reporter in 1955 and three years later, was named the paper’s first advertising columnist. He went from writing about the advertising industry to remaking it, starting in 1960 at McCann-Erickson Inc., where he rose to executive vice president and general manager before joining McCann’s parent, the Interpublic Group of Companies, in 1972. At McCann and at Interpublic, he was an early advocate of global expansion. In 1977, he was awarded the College’s Townsend Harris Medal.
Spielvogel left Interpublic in 1979 to form Baker & Spielvogel, one of the hottest ad agencies on Madison Avenue in the 1980s. Subsequent mergers created Baker Spielvogel & Bates, and later, Bates Worldwide, where Spielvogel was chairman until 1994. When he left, Bates Worldwide was one of the largest marketing and advertising communication companies in the world, with 178 offices in 55 countries and annual billings of more than $5 billion.
|The Spielvogels, with Matilda and Mario Cuomo|
In 2000, Clinton called on Spielvogel once again, appointing him ambassador to the Slovak Republic, a post he filled until April 2001. He has maintained close ties with City College and Baruch. A past president of Baruch’s board of trustees, he was the recipient of an honorary LLD from the school in 1987 and a Distinguished Alumnus Award for Outstanding Career Achievement in 1992. In September 1992, Baruch inaugurated “The Carl Spielvogel Lecture Series on Global Marketing Communications,” held annually.