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Alan Siegel :

Alan Siegel : On Branding and Clear Communications. By Louis J.Slovinsky . (Spring 2006)
ISBN 0-9774724-6-9
Expand the cover (By Nigel Homes)
Buy at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

Over the past three decades, Alan Siegel has become one of the best-known figures in the branding business.  He has achieved the stature of both pillar of the establishment and provocative iconoclast, while building a leading brand consultancy, Siegel & Gale, devoted to positioning global companies for competitive success.  As consultant, author, and commentator, Alan's influence extends from advising organizations such as Xerox, American Express, the National Basketball Association, Caterpillar, The Girl Scouts, and Carnegie Mellon University, to creating guides for the Wall Street Journal on understanding financial markets, to board-level service at American Institute of Graphic Arts, Design Management Institute, Paul Taylor Dance Company, Girls, Inc., and the Authors Guild Foundation and the American Theater Wing, where he is a TONY voter.  During the 1970's, Alan pioneered simplification to such daunting documents as insurance policies, bank loan notes, mutual fund prospectuses, and all types of government communications.  He criticized corporate executives, lawyers, doctors, technologists, and politicians for their murky jargon, self-important claims, and frustrating communications.  During the 1980's, he popularized the idea of "brand voice."  And during the 1990's, his firm championed the Internet as a powerful expression of brand strategy. In all he does, Alan is known for the plain speaking he demands of clients and for the excellence in individual and organizational communications that his own firm has come to embody.

Alan pioneered the development of plain English for complex legal documents for business and government in the 1970s and is considered one of the country’s leading authorities on business communications. Alan was director of a project for the Internal Revenue Service to simplify U.S. individual income tax forms; he has written extensively on this subject for The New York Times, Across the Board, and the National Law Journal, and has appeared nationally on “Today,” “The McNeil-Lehrer Report,” and “The CBS Evening News with Dan Rather.”

One of the first graduates of the management training program at Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn, a leading advertising agency, Alan was a senior account executive, served as secretary for the agency’s New Products Development Group, and helped establish the Communications Design Center, which handled corporate identity, packaging, and sales promotion projects. He subsequently held executive posts at Ruder & Finn, public relations consultants, and Sandgren & Murtha, marketing and design consultants.

Alan served for six years as president of the Advisory Council for the College of Architecture, Art and Planning at Cornell University. He was an adjunct associate professor of law at Fordham University Law School for seven years, where he developed an innovative legal drafting course, “Writing Contracts in Plain English.” He also served as an adjunct associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University, where he taught, conducted research, and was a co-director of the Communications Design Center. Alan served on the executive committee of the Document Design Project, which was funded by the National Institute of Education, a federal research agency. The National Endowment for the Arts appointed him to its Advisory Panel on Federal Graphic Design.

A graduate of Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Alan also attended New York University Law School, the School of Visual Arts, and Alexei Brodovich’s Design Laboratory. Currently, Alan serves on the boards of the Center for Communication, the Nathaniel Wharton Foundation at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, the European Chamber of Commerce in the United States, the Museum of Modern Art Photography Committee, the International Center of Photography, The Authors Guild Foundation, Inc., the American Craft Museum, and DirectAdvice.com. Alan also served on the boards of the Paul Taylor Dance Company, the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA), the Design Management Institute, and Girls Inc. (formerly the Girls’ Clubs of America).

Alan is the author of an extensive series of personal guides for The Wall Street Journal, including the bestseller, The Wall Street Journal Guide to Money and Markets, as well as Writing Contracts in Plain English and Simplified Consumer Credit Forms. Alan is also the author of One Man’s Eye: Photographs from the Alan Siegel Collection, which was published by Harry N. Abrams in October 2000 and Step Right This Way: The Photographs of Edward J. Kelty published by Barnes & Noble in October 2002.

About the Author
Louis J Slovinsky ,worked for Time Warner Inc. for nearly 30 years, rising to the position of Vice President of Corporate Communications at Time Inc. and, following the merger of Time and Warner Communications, VP of Time Warner Inc. He also was Senior VP-Corporate Communications for Home Box Office Inc., a subsidiary of Time Warner. Having successfully managed corporate identity programs for Time and Time Warner, Slovinsky began consulting during his retirement on strategic branding, marketing and public relations issues. He wrote corporate identity analyses for two major brand identity firms, Siegel & Gale and Chermayeff & Geismar, as well as for AmeriCares, the international disaster relief organization. For the consulting firm Corporate Branding Partnership, he contributed chapters to and edited Leveraging Corporate Brand (NTC Business Books, 1997). Named a Knight International Press Fellow in 1997-1998, he taught a self-designed public relations course for Wyzsza Skola Biznesu in Nowy Sacz, Poland, and created an MBA specialization in PR for the private business college. He also conducted seminars on branding for Polish CEOs in Krynica and on press relations for marginally funded Central European biomedical scientists in Warsaw, the latter under the auspices of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Slovinsky received a BA in English from the University of Buffalo and an MA in Literature and Language Arts from Teachers College, Columbia University. In 1990 he was named one of America’s “Corporate PR Superstars” by Public Relations Quarterly.

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