James Thornton: A Splendid Life : Target MarketingBy
It is with a feeling of “sweet sadness” that we bring this wonderful eulogy to the attention of our community. James Thornton was every bit as unusual, and delightful, and creative, and polite and gentlemanly and fluent as his eulogist describes him. Attending the conference of the International Committee of the DMA at which James was honored (mentioned in the eulogy) was one of my last and most pleasant duties when working there. He was clearly ill, and clearly delighted. And we all reveled in his delight. We hailed him as the pioneer and generous gentleman he so clearly was. For myself personally he was an unfailing ally to me in my position as VP-International at the DMA. When I put out an email request for news of the markets or other direct marketing lore for our publications, James would always be one of the first contributors to respond, and he always responded substantively, never just to broadcast his name. When we would meet in one or another international event, be it Hong Kong, London or New York or elsewhere, I would ask what the latest project was. After the standard opening moaning that “there are no new lists in the market” I would get him to talk about his latest newsletter project, often “zodiac-based” and somehow related to the stock markets! Or unusual medical cures, also often somehow related to the zodiac. And James was a great student of addressing, a necessity in his chosen profession of direct marketer based in Asia, where lists could be hard to find, and lists with adequate addresses even harder to find. A wonderful man of constant good humor who relished life and was infinitely curious about everything around him. I am so glad to have known him.