Sylvia Porter: Americas Original Personal Finance Columnist

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She was both a trailblazer in the overwhelmingly male-dominated world of finance and Wall Street, and a tireless advocate for financial literacy, especially for women.

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Such was Porter's influence and connection with the American public that in November , a portrait of the economist, financial journalist and author graced the cover of Time magazine. Wrote Time : "More plain everyday consumers listen to Sylvia Porter than to any other economic writer in the profession. At her apex, a few years later, Porter's newspaper columns appeared in more than newspapers and reached more than 40 million global readers -- especially women.

In truth, women in our time still lag well behind men when it comes to acting as the primary financial decision makers in their families.

Sylvia Porter: America’s Original Personal Finance Columnist (Director’s Choice)

Porter -- who Time described as a pert, brown-eyed, dark haired, nail-biting, chain-smoking, go-getter -- helped enfranchise American women to the investment world, teaching them core concepts and strategies so they need not ask for a man's help to take the reins of what Porter termed "pocketbook issues. At a time when daily business news coverage was stuffy and technical, Porter railed against what she termed the "bafflegab" lingo of finance, preferring to express investment and money concepts in words and imagery that didn't require readers to obtain a specialized education.

Porter always addressed her readers as "you," as in "your money," "your cost of living" and "your decision. Raised in a middle class family in Brooklyn, Porter's father -- Louis Feldman, a physician -- died of a heart attack in when she was only 12, leaving it to her mother to become the family's income earner and financial manager. At first, as a year-old financial news freelancer for the New York Evening Post in , Porter was required to use the byline "S. Porter" to mask the fact that she was a woman.

But Porter's crusading reporting, fighting for the common person and exposing financial graft, earned her a growing and loyal audience.


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Still "bearded" as "S. Porter" in , she was made the newspaper's financial editor and began writing a daily column. It took until July for the Post to finally realize that Porter's gender might actually be an asset. It was then that the paper allowed her to write as "Sylvia F.

Sylvia Porter: America's Original Personal Finance Columnist

Porter" and began running her photo. Walmart Tell us if something is incorrect. Book Format: Choose an option. Add to Cart.


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Product Highlights Sylvia Porter was the nations first personal finance columnist and one of the most admired women of the twentieth century. Lucht traces Porters professional trajectory, identifying her career strategies and exploring the role of gender in her creation of a once-unique, now-ubiquitous form of journalism. A pioneer for both male and female journalists, Porter established a genre of newspaper writing that would last into the twenty-first century while carving a space for women in what had been an almost exclusively male field.

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See our disclaimer. Sylvia Porter was the nation's first personal finance columnist and one of the most admired women of the twentieth century. In Sylvia Porter: America's Original Personal Finance Columnist, Lucht traces Porter's professional trajectory, identifying her career strategies and exploring the role of gender in her creation of a once-unique, now-ubiquitous form of journalism.

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