Mark S. Grody, former Marina del Rey area public relations executive, died Saturday, July 9th, in La Quinta, following a long battle with cancer. He was 67.
Grody founded Mark Grody Associates in 1975 and merged the agency with Tellem Public Relations into Grody/Tellem Communications in 1980.
Grody represented Real Property Management (RPM) when that firm was the largest lessee in the Marina. Grody handled the public relations openings of the Marina International Hotel and the Marina Beach Hotel, now the Marina del Rey Marriott Hotel. He also promoted Fisherman’s Village and other RPM leaseholds.
Tellem Communications, which had been headed by Susan Tellem, was active in medical and health care public relations.
Grody and Tellem were active in the Marina del Rey Chamber of Commerce, Marina Wine Festivals and other community activities.
Grody’s firm had offices in Washington Square on then-Washington Street and later in the Paradise Building on Sepulveda Boulevard in Westchester.
For many years, Grody lived in Westchester.
Grody’s other clients included General Motors, City of Hope, Naturade, the LA Sports & Entertainment Commission, Rent-A-Wreck of America, Oldsmobile, Mercedes-Benz, Northwestern Mutual Life, Pinkerton’s, 3-M, the State of California, 21st Century Insurance, the Tournament of Roses and Carbite Golf.
In 1987, Grody sold his agency to Saatchi & Saatchi of London and Grody/Tellem Communications, Inc. became part of The Rowland Company, which Grody headed as chief executive officer of western operations. He also served on the agency’s international board of directors.
In May 1990, he resigned and formed MGA to provide senior public relations counseling.
During the following three years, he created and implemented the strategic public relations plan for General Motors’ California Marketing Initiative and he consulted for several major public relations firms and organizations.
From 1993 to 1996, he was executive vice president and general manager of Ogilvy Public Relations, Los Angeles.
In 1996, he founded Marketing Golf Resources and its successor firm, corporategolf.com to work with companies in the golf industry on public relations, strategic marketing, long-range planning and new product introductions.
He authored “Corporate Golf: How to Play the Game for Business Success.”
After serving in the U.S. Army as a public information officer, Grody began his public relations career with General Motors, serving several senior positions.
During his last 15 months with GM, he was “on loan” to the U.S. government, working for the President and U.S. Secretary of Labor as vice president of public affairs for the then-named National Alliance of Businessmen in Washington.
He resigned from GM in 1974, after 13 years, and moved to Los Angeles to found his own agency.
He received numerous awards for community service and was a frequent speaker at civic, service, business and professional organization meetings.
He was a member of The Lakes Country Club in Palm Springs and served as vice president of the executive committee of the board of directors of the International Network of Golf.
He is survived by his wife, Dr. Jackie Black Grody; a daughter, Laura Grody, and a son, Daniel Grody, of Los Angeles; four stepchildren, Kellie Figoten, Tori Tellem and John Tellem of Los Angeles and Jeremy Figoten of Arlington, VA.
Services were held last week in Palm Springs.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Mark S. Grody Core Values Grant, established under the auspices of The First Tee, whose mission is to impact the lives of young people throughout the U.S. by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf. The First Tee is headquartered at World Golf Village, 425 S. Legacy Trail, St. Augustine, FL 32092.