Henry Grunwald (editor)

Henry Grunwald (editor) bigraphy, stories - American diplomat

Henry Grunwald (editor) : biography

December 3, 1922 – February 26, 2005

Henry Anatole Grunwald (December 3, 1922 – February 26, 2005) was an Austrian-born journalist and diplomat perhaps best known for his position as managing editor of TIME magazine and editor in chief of Time, Inc. In 2001, he was awarded the Austrian Cross of Honour for Science and Art, 1st class.


Grunwald was born Heinz Anatol Grünwald in Vienna. His father, Alfred Grünwald, wrote libretti for operettas by Lehár, Kálmán and Oscar Straus. His mother was Mila Löwenstein. However, in 1938, after the Anschluss, the family left Austria, first for Czechoslovakia, then Paris, and eventually, in 1940, after brief periods in Biarritz, Casablanca, and Lisbon, for the United States. Grunwald had ambitions to be a playwright, but got a job as a copy boy at TIME while studying at New York University.

Grunwald worked his way up at TIME magazine until his retirement in 1987, when he was succeeded as Editor-in-Chief by Jason McManus. He was the first to give TIME writers bylines, a practice which had not been allowed previously. He also introduced new departments such as Behavior, Energy, The Sexes, Economy and Dance. He ordered the famous (some say infamous) cover article, "Is God Dead?" He moved the magazine away from Republican partisanship. He personally wrote the TIME editorial calling for President Richard Nixon to resign.

In 1962 he edited and wrote the introduction to "Salinger, a Critical and Personal Portrait", a collection of essays about J.D.Salinger which includes previously published essays by John Updike, Leslie Fiedler and Joan Didion, among others, as well as Time’s own article about the writer.

After serving 11 years as TIME’s managing editor, Grunwald took on the role of editor-in-chief of all of Time, Inc.’s magazines, including Fortune, Sports Illustrated, People and Money. In 1987 President Ronald Reagan appointed him U.S. Ambassador to his native Austria, a post he held until 1990.

On September 5th of 1998, Grunwald released his auto-biography "One Man’s America", describing his emigration to America, and his life in the States. In his final years Grunwald was gradually losing his eyesight due to macular degeneration, a fact he wrote about in Twilight: Losing Sight, Gaining Insight (1999). He also wrote a novel, A Saint, More or Less, which was published in 2003.

He died on February 26, 2005 in New York City.

Selected bibliography

  • Salinger, a Critical and Personal Portrait edited by Henry Anatole Grunwald. New York: Harper & Row, 1962.


He was married twice. His first wife, Beverly Suser, died of breast cancer in 1981; they had three children in a marriage that lasted from 1953 until her death: screenwriter Peter Grunwald, Democratic political consultant Mandy Grunwald, and writer Lisa Grunwald. In 1987, he married Manhattan socialite and former Vogue editor Louise Melhado.