Friedman, 40, who was raised in Newton, Mass., wasn't always the fastest remote controller in the East. Shortly after graduating from Harvard in 1973, he signed up with TIME-LIFE BOOKS. He joined the newly born PEOPLE in 1975 and in 1977 left to work on other publications, landing at TV Guide in 1981. He rose to managing editor there before returning to PEOPLE in 1990.
Friedman's family—wife Meryl and daughter Leah, 7—share two TV sets in suburban New Jersey, halfway between Meryl's Philadelphia law practice and PEOPLE'S New York City offices. Ideal? "I get channels from both cities," brags Friedman.
"Having Dick on staff is like having our own personal Nielsen family," says assistant managing editor Susan Toepfer. "He knows what makes a hit show and which characters will really take off."
Two transitions of note: Michael J. Clayton, PEOPLE production director, has been named director of plant operations for all New York City-based Time Warner magazines. In his 2½ years with PEOPLE, Clayton, 32, has pushed the magazine to the technological fore.
Production manager David J. Young is retiring after 47 years with the company. Young, 64, started in the mailroom at 17 before joining editorial production at LIFE. He moved to SPORTS ILLUSTRATED in 1973 and was part of PEOPLE'S 1974 start-up. With quiet dedication, ironic humor and herculean tact, Dave, a tennis aficionado, has given us a new way of scoring: 47 with love.
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