NB: Prior to Godfrey Hammond, persons listed were president of the publishing company. Hammond was the first person to be listed as "publisher" in 1945.
Edward L. Youmans, 1872-1877; Edward L. Youmans and William J. Youmans, 1877-1887; William J. Youmans, 1887-1900; J. McKeen Cattell, 1900-1915; Waldemar Kaempffert, 1915-1920; Kenneth W. Payne, 1921-1922; Sumner N. Blossom, 1922-1929; Travis Hoke, 1929-1930; Raymond J. Brown, 1930-1940; Charles McLendon, 1941-1945; Perry Githens, 1945-1951; Volta Torrey, 1951- 1956; Howard Allaway, 1956-1962; Robert P. Crossley, 1962-1964; Ernest V. Heyn, 1965-1971; Hubert P. Luckett, 1971-1980; C. P. Gilmore, 1980-present.
Jerome Irving Rodale envisioned a nation of people close to the natural world, healthy in body and mind through their investment in organic, unrefined foods. Rodale began publishing magazines in the 1930s to present his philosophy of life to the public. After several unsuccessful publications, all health related, he began issuing Organic Gardening and Farming* in 1942 to advocate organic farming research. The next venture was Prevention, first issued in June 1950; it became most successful of all the Rodale publications and a model for other magazines and newsletters. Executive Fitness, Body Bulletin, Women's Health, Bicycling, New Farm, and New Shelter are among the Rodale publications stressing self-sufficiency and healthy living. Rodale's book division publishes thirty- five to forty-five new titles annually, and a cable television series, "Home Dynamics," began in 1981.
Rodale Press was founded in 1953, although it actually started in the 1930s when the depression forced Rodale to move his business, an electrical parts company, from New York City to Emmaus, Pennsylvania. Until interest in nutrition and natural living became widespread enough to make Rodale profitable, revenue from the electrical parts company, Lutron Electronics, kept the press alive.
The United States was not quick to grasp the relevance of Rodale's philosophy. The 1950s witnessed the rapid growth of the supermarket and the concept of a national brand, consistent in quality and packaging. Modern conveniences were the trend, not the sometimes painstaking and unreliable labor required to grow food at home. Moreover, population was shifting toward the city where space was limited for gardening. Rodale's controversial ideas alienated the supermarket shoppers and those caught up in the changing times. Many people did agree with him, however, and his audience increased until the competition was so great that supermarket managers realized that they must accommodate the need or lose