W. M. Kiplinger

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W.M. Kiplinger

Willard Monroe Kiplinger (January 8, 1891-August 6, 1967) was best known as the founder of Kiplinger, a publishing company located in Washington, D.C..

Kiplinger was born in the Lake Township of Logan County, Ohio to parents Clarence E. and Cora Miller Kiplinger.[1] He grew up on the north side of Columbus, Ohio. As a high school upperclassman he was editor of the school newspaper where one of the illustrators was Dudley Fisher. He attended Ohio State University from 1908 until 1912 and was a member of Sigma Pi Fraternity. He and Ray Evans would recruit Fisher into the fraternity.[2] While at OSU he was editor of the school newspaper, The Lantern.[3] When he graduated he was one of the first two journalism graduates from the school. His first job after graduation in 1913 was with the Ohio State Journal.[4]

On June 20, 1914, he married his first wife, Irene Austin of Toledo, in Lucas County, Ohio.[5] She introduced him to Unitarianism and he would be a member of the church for the rest of his life.[6] Their first child, a daughter name Jane Austin, died shortly after birth in 1916.[7] They would have a son named Austin[8] and a daughter named Jane Ann[9] before divorcing. He married his second wife, Lillian "LaVerne" Colwell, in Harrisonburg, Virginia on May 18, 1936.[10] They would have a daughter named Bonnie.[11]

He moved to Washington, D.C. in 1916 where he worked for the Associated Press.[12] He and his family attended All Souls Unitarian Church, which was the same church William Taft attended.[6] He started the company Kiplinger in 1920 as an "intelligence bureau" for out-of-town banks and businesses. He started The Kiplinger Letter in 1923 and in 1947 began publishing Kiplinger Magazine.[3]

In 1942 he published a book titled Washington Is Like That which focused on the inner organization of the federal government.[13]

In 1952 he played a large role in soliciting funds and local business support to help educational television station WETA-TV begin operations.[4]

Kiplinger's son Austin H. Kiplinger succeeded him as head of the publishing company.

Kiplinger Distinguished Contributions to Journalism is an award given by the National Press Foundation in his honor.[14]


  1. ^ "Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003". State of Ohio.
  2. ^ Upp, James R. (May 1953). "The Dudley Fisher Memorial Room" (PDF). The Emerald of Sigma Pi. Vol. 40 no. 1. pp. 3–5.
  3. ^ a b "Who we are". Kiplinger Programs.
  4. ^ a b "Kiplinger, W.M. (1891-1967)". Harvard Square Library.
  5. ^ "Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013". State of Ohio.
  6. ^ a b Notable American Unitarians 1936-1961. Harvard Square Library. 2007. pp. 129–130. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
  7. ^ "District of Columbia Deaths, 1874-1961". District of Columbia.
  8. ^ "United States Census, 1920". National Archives and Records Administration.
  9. ^ "United States Census, 1940". National Archives and Records Administration.
  10. ^ "Virginia Marriages, 1785-1940". Commonwealth of Virginia.
  11. ^ "United States Census, 1940". National Archives and Records Administration.
  12. ^ "United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918". National Archives and Records Administration.
  13. ^ "Washington Is Like That". Kirkus Review.
  14. ^ "W.M. Kiplinger Distinguished Contributions to Journalism Award". National Press Foundation.

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