Lessons: Please Pass the Bacon: A Tribute to Erwin Ephron

Gale Metzger

Erwin Ephron and I forged a lifetime friendship when we worked together at Nielsen in the early 1960s—“forged” because there was heat and pressure in the setting. In 1962, there was a Congressional investigation on the purpose and accuracy of audience research, and regulation was considered; in 1963 there were public hearings. Clients were surprised by—and unhappy about—the disclosures at the hearings. Erwin and I shared the tension even as that pressure cemented us as confrères.

As part of the Nielsen response team, we each worked from different perspectives: He was a word person—a New Yorker’s New Yorker with a B.A. from Swarthmore and MBA from NYU, hired as part of the PR team. Based in Chicago and trained in numbers, I reeked of the Midwest and worked in the statistical-control department.