Mark Shapiro, 60; longtime advertising executive led firm

BY ROBERT A. COHN, Editor-in-Chief Emeritus

Mark Shapiro, long respected for his work as an advertising executive and innovator, died Tuesday, Aug. 30, in his Clayton condo. He was 60 and a longtime resident of St. Louis.

A statement issued by Mr. Shapiro’s family described him as “a person who could accomplish anything he set his mind to. He was blessed with an ingenious approach to life, allowing him to accomplish incredible things in school, in the work force and within his relationships with family and friends. He had an uncanny ability to reach people, and knew exactly what to say to you under any circumstances.”

Much admired by his professional colleagues, Mr. Shapiro was remembered as “an outstanding ad man and a true professional,” according to Gary Goldman, Marketing and Sales Director of the St. Louis Jewish Light.

Mr. Shapiro’s most recent business was white space, whose goal was to work “hand-in-hand with clients to leverage meaningful brand relationships.” Previously in 1984, Mr. Shapiro along with Robert Hermann, Jr. co-founded the Hermann Group. When Hermann sold his stake in the firm to FKB Group PLC in 1988, the company became the St. Louis base for Louis London, and Mr. Shapiro stayed on as president.

Beth Shalom Cemetery ad

Under his leadership, the firm grew from 35 employees to 160. Louis London was sold to the Interpublic Group of Companies in 1999 and merged with that firm’s sales promotion arm to form Momentum of North America. Mr. Shapiro left that firm in 2003.

Mr. Shapiro was described as an avid biker, golfer and tennis player as well as a “lover of all things fitness.” He was an active member of Westwood Country Club and of Central Reform Congregation.

Survivors include a brother, Ken Shapiro of St. Louis; two sons, Andrew Shapiro and Max Shapiro, both of St. Louis; his parents, Harvey and Popie Shapiro of Los Gatos, Calif.; and his longtime companion, Pattie Cashman of St. Louis.

A memorial service was held Sunday, Sept. 4 at Central Reform Congregation. Contributions preferred to Forest Park Forever or Mentor St. Louis.