Bernice Fitz-Gibbon

Deceased Person

1894 – 1982


Who was Bernice Fitz-Gibbon?

Bernice Bowles "Fitz" Fitz-Gibbon was an American advertising executive and a pioneer in retail advertising, working at Marshall Field's, Macy's, Gimbels and Wanamaker's. She was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame in 1982. She was named #62 on the 100 people of the 20th century by Advertising Age. She was also honored by Retail Advertising Confederation and the Copywriters Club of New York.

Fitz-Gibbon was born in Waunakee, Wisconsin and grew up on a farm. She earned a degree from University of Wisconsin–Madison, then worked at small newspapers before taking a position at Marshall Field's. She moved to New York City in 1926 to work on the Macy's account, where she penned the tagline "It's smart to be thrifty." While working at Gimbel's from 1940 to 1954, she wrote "Nobody, but nobody, undersells Gimbels."

Her husband died in 1951. She continued her ascendancy and got into a notable feud with author Sloan Wilson over women in the workplace. After receiving numerous industry awards and starting her own firm, Fitz-Gibbon retired to Madison, Wisconsin in 1976. She died in Onalaska, Wisconsin.


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