Kathy Riordan

Kathy Riordan
Florida, United States
April 27
One woman's view of life and the universe. Follow @katriord on Twitter.


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NOVEMBER 4, 2010 7:27AM

My Mad Men Husband

Rate: 46 Flag

1966.  My husband was in the middle of a career spanning the mid-40's to the mid-80's in a world where business was done over martinis and Manhattans by men in black suits with Brylcreem hair.  Women sported darts and flippy bobs.  It was the cocktail generation.

Right between Sweet Charity's opening at the Palace Theater in New York and Russia's first unmanned space landing on the moon, my husband was at the helm of a company and an event held at the Washington D.C. Hilton, January 31-February 1, 1966.

It was a short two years since the JFK assassination, and LBJ was in the White House.  Simon and Garfunkel were #1 on the Billboard charts with The Sound of Silence.  The Beatles were not yet God.


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French cuffs and handshakes.  My husband, Lawrence T. (Larry) Riordan, left, giving an award to Bernard L. (Bernie) Boutin (center), then Deputy Director for the Office of Economic Opportunity.  To the right is Eugene Driscoll, director of sales.  Boutin, a former Kennedy associate who lost his bid to be New Hampshire's governor about the same time Kennedy won the presidency, was appointed by JFK to head the General Services Administration.


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Rubbing shoulders with lumbermen and politicians.  To the right, then Wisconsin senator William Proxmire, who took the seat vacated by Joe McCarthy.  Proxmire was at the time serving with Senator Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day.  Melvin Laird, who was then representing Wisconsin's 7th Congressional District, was also in attendance.


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Addressing the delegation.  To the right is featured speaker John Coates, then President and Chairman of the Board of the Masonite Corporation. 


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Water glasses, coffee cups and ashtrays.  And proof there were women on the dais.  Left to right, Gene Driscoll (speaking), John Coates, Larry Riordan, and Mrs. Sheila Seim, wife of one of my husband's executives, Ed Seim. 


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Having fun.  My husband (left) has a lighthearted moment while his Director of Sales is giving a presentation. 


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Introducing Bernard Boutin.  Boutin (left) was the recipient of the Award of Merit at that year's gathering.


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Captains of industry.  My husband presenting the Award of Merit, an engraved sterling silver bowl,  to Bernard Boutin (center), as John Coates (left) of Masonite Corporation looks on with approval.  


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Testosterone on parade.  John Coates, CEO of Masonite Corporation, Gene Driscoll, Bernard Boutin, Deputy Director of the Office of Economic Opportunity, and Larry Riordan, President and Chairman of the Board of Crestline,  pose for photographs after the Award of Merit presentation.   


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The smiles that get the sales.  Giving an award to salesman Gene Belanger (center).   John Coates is seated to the right.


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Every gathering had its beauty queen.   Director of Sales Gene Driscoll (second from left) and his wife, Mrs. Billie Driscoll (far right) pose with Masonite CEO John Coates and "Miss Crestorama" (left).


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The look.  My husband gives an approving glance in the general direction of Mrs. Lillian Stein, wife of his advertising director Newton Stein.  This picture is a favorite of mine, because it captures something most public relations photography generally does not.



On the Web:

The Bernard L. Boutin Papers - JFK Presidential Library and Museum 

Bernard Boutin Lives! - New Hampshire Historical Society 

First Lady Book Features NHHS Letters - New Hampshire Historical Society 

John Coates, 86, Dies - Ex-Leader of Masonite - NY Times  


(Original photography taken by C.S. I. News, Georgetown, Washington, D.C., personal collection of the author) 



Running a company, 1970's. 


After the company was sold to a major insurance company, flying around the country as Vice-President of Acquisitions in the corporate jet, 1980's.


Retired but still very much looking like chairman of the board, 1990's.

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Reposting this in honor of my beloved Larry, a man among men.
Thank you Kathy, Larry exudes charm and wit in these pictures. We should all hope too accomplish so much in our lives. Praying for you, Larry and the whole family.
Very loving and sweet. r.
Thank you for this lovely post...your husband had such an amazing, full life.
I loved reading this again.
Kathy, a very nice remembrance with wonderful vintage photos of your husband. He certainly rubbed shoulders with many notables over the years! Interesting to see Senator Proxmire in one of the shots--I was just thinking about him the other day and his famous Golden Fleece Awards.

We see so many color photos these days that it is a treat to see black & white photos with full tonal qualities--thanks for sharing this personal look back in time.
You're right about that last picture. Personalities come shining through. Very nice tribute.
Enjoyed this the first time around and now it takes on a deeper meaning.
Larry presents as an incredibly dynamic man in these images. And being a Wisconsin gal who grew up there in the fifties and sixties, I certainly recognized Bill Proxmire immediately. Thank you, Kathy.
A lion of industry, Larry was a strong man who chose well both in business and personally. You have been by his side and he loved you dearly for it.
Kathy~ I was so saddened to hear of your loss, and heartened that your tribute awaited me this morning. I think honoring our loved ones in however we an is the first little stitch that holds our hearts in place.
I don't remember seeing this the first time around . . . but thank you for sharing it again . . . seeing Larry through your eyes is a beautiful thing. Big hugs, Kathy . . . thinking of you . . .
I had read this, but it was a great read once again Kathy.
My heart goes out to you.
Rated with hugs
poignant, sweet and very lovingly done. I'm sure he was a good man loved by a good woman. Thanks for sharing and our hearts are with you now Kathy.
This was a glorious post showcasing your husband and his many accomplishments. Warm thoughts and prayers to you and your family at this time.
Kathy, I missed this original post. I enjoyed reading about your "man among men." May you have peace in his absence.

with warm regards,
Thank you for reposting this and giving me another opportunity to read it. He was, indeed, a man's man.
This is a beautiful tribute to your husband. He seems like he was an amazing man.
Kathy, this post was such a nice tribute to your husband. It must have been difficult to put together....to see all those wonderful pictures of your husand.
A life well-lived and lovingly remembered. Hope you have love and support nearby.
You have every right to be proud! You complimented each other so very well. You are in my thoughts and prayers. (((K)))
Thanks for the photo introduction to your husband, who was a fine man.
Kathy, he seems like an amazing man. I'm so sorry for your loss.
That smile....I'm charmed through the photos : )

He was lucky to have such a loving wife, Kathy, thanks for re-posting this.
This is beautiful. Thank you, Kathy. -R-
Mad Men, indeed. I was Miss Advertising Age in Milwaukee for their soiree in 1967. Suave guys like your Larry were there in abundance. He clearly was a "Man Among Men." Hugs to you, dear.

A woman who lovingly honors the memory of her husband is to be praised. In this era she should be worshipped.
All of our hearts went out to you in your grief, you must know that!
I'm so glad you re-posted this, I missed the first one. He was a very successful man and I bet you are one proud wife!
thinking of you both Kathy.
Lovely photos, so much love here. I agree, the one with Larry giving the woman an admiring glance is the best - very real and sincere. My thoughts are with you and your family. R.
Wishing you the comfort of others who knew and loved him, Kathy. It was a good time to re-post in his honor, and I hope he was able to see this the first time.
He's definitely got that "something." I don't wonder you fell for him. I like "The Look" picture too -- because he's definitely appreciative, but it's not lascivious. He's clearly amused, engaged and charmed. What a look!
Thanks for reposting this......I enjoyed it the first time, and especially now. What a rich life you shared with this man!

Great good thoughts and love to you, as always, Kathy.
What a great loving post. These pictures are wonderful. r
So sorry honey..
You are in my thoughts and prayers.. HUGS
these are very nice and beautiful pictures, great post, wish you very happy life under God's blessings.
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So sorry for your loss, Kathy. Tough nights. Thinking of you.
Thinking of you lovingly and often. So sorry, Kathy, and yet so glad for what you had in him and your marriage. Thanks for this piece. Hope you can feel us around you in Wausau. xo
Yeah...the guy had class and sparkle.
A fitting tribute. Like everyone else, I'm hoping you are doing the best you can under the sad circumstances. I hope you keep checking in with us here, in whatever form works for you.
That smile....I'm charmed through the photos.
What a great loving post. These pictures are wonderful. Thank you, Kathy By www.boxing-products.com