Hedley Donovan (May 24, 1914 – August 13, 1990) was an editor in chief of Time Inc.. He became editor in chief starting 1964 till 1979 responsible for all publications of Time Inc., including Time, Life, Fortune, Sports Illustrated, Money, and People. After retiring in 1979 he became a senior adviser to President Jimmy Carter. Hedley Donovan was chosen by Henry Luce, founder of Time Inc. to be his successor. Donovan redirected the magazine from a biased one to a more neutral magazine. Henry Luce used to advance his hawkish stance on Vietnam through the magazine while Donovan redirected it to be more neutral. The Hedley Donovan Award was created in 1999 by the Minnesota Magazines and Publications Association to recognize individuals who have shown outstanding lifelong dedication and contributions to Minnesota's magazine industry.
Donovan was born May 24, 1914, in Brainerd, Minnesota. He had a sister, Elizabeth Edmonds and his father was a mining engineer. He graduated in 1934 magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota, as a member of Delta Upsilon. He later got another degree in 1936 as a Rhodes Scholar at Hertford College at Oxford University. He was married to Dorothy who died in 1978 leaving him with three children: Peter, Mark and Helen.
Donovan worked first for $600 a year as a teaching assistant at Harvard. He worked then as a reporter at The Washington Post for five years and then worked as a naval officer in World War II. In 1945 he joined Fortune magazine as a writer. Henry Luce made him in 1953 managing editor of Fortune and after Luce retired he became editor in chief in 1964. Donovan published his first book Roosevelt to Reagan: A Reporter's Encounters with Nine Presidents in 1985 under the publication company Harper & Row.
- S. Jones, Alex (1990-08-14). "Hedley Donovan Is Dead at 76; Retired Chief Editor of Time Inc.". The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-03-06.
- Goldstein, Tom (1989-11-12). "WHO HAS TIME FOR SELF-DOUBT?". The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2009-03-06.