List Veteran Mitchell Remembered as Mentor

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Richard Allen Mitchell, a veteran list manager and founder of Qualified Lists, was remembered last week as a mentor and friend to many in the direct marketing industry. Mitchell, 66, died Nov. 18 of bladder cancer at Southeast Georgia Regional Medical Center.


"Everybody loved him in the industry," said Tommy Eagan, account manager in list brokerage at Walter Karl Inc., Pearl River, NY, who had worked with Mitchell from 1980 to 1992, when he retired. "He mentored tons of people who are still in the industry and have formed their own companies or gone on to other firms."


His former charges include Malcolm McCluskey, CEO of List Services Corp., and Martin Stein, president of RMI Direct Marketing Inc.


Mitchell started his direct marketing career in 1968 and founded Qualified Lists, Armonk, NY, with Walter Karl. Qualified was the list management side, and Walter Karl was the brokerage side until they merged under the Walter Karl name. Mitchell also served on the board of the Direct Mail Marketing Association.


However, Mitchell didn't start his career as a direct marketer. In fact, some would say his background as a brother with the Glenmary Mission from 1954 to 1966 was unique for a list professional.


"The guy used to be a monk, and in this industry that's rare -- the people are usually the exact opposite," Eagan joked.


A memorial Mass was held for Mitchell last week. Donations in his memory can be made to the oncology unit of Southeast Georgia Regional Medical Center, 2415 Parkwood Drive, Brunswick, GA 31520.


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