Thomas J. Quigley, advertising and PR agency owner

Thomas J. Quigley
Thomas J. Quigley
Posted: October 20, 2012

Thomas J. Quigley, 74, of Moorestown, an advertising and public relations agency owner, died of lung cancer, Tuesday, Oct. 16, at Virtua Marlton Hospital.

For more than 20 years, Mr. Quigley operated Quigley Communications in Center City and later in Haddonfield. His accounts included Thrift Drug, CBS3 (KYW-TV), and Philadelphia Ad Club, where he published the newsletter for more than 10 years.

Mr. Quigley closed his business six years ago but continued to work for Ideal Lab Marketing in Moorestown. "Tom was delightful to have around," said Ideal Lab owner Jack Paolin. "He galvanized the whole office."

Longtime colleague Joanne Calabria, when she learned of Mr. Quigley's death, wrote in a tribute: "Hearing this news was the first time in 30 years that I heard Tom's name and did not immediately smile. I will miss his quick wit, his laugh, his stories, but most of all his friendship."

Calabria is vice president of public affairs for CBS Television Station Group, which includes CBS3.

Pat Ciarrocchi, CBS3 news anchor and reporter, called Mr. Quigley an original.

"Tom was kindhearted in a competitive arena and a great example of a professional," she wrote in a tribute.

Mr. Quigley was a mentor, taking colleagues under his wing and connecting them with job opportunities, said Vernon Waring, a longtime friend. "I remember this Rolodex he had and it had over a hundred, maybe more, contacts for people in Philadelphia and New Jersey," Waring said.

"Tom Quigley was the consummate public relations professional," said Inquirer business writer Jane M. Von Bergen. "He always delivered what he promised and he also always made sure that his facts were accurate, unmanipulated, and unexaggerated. In addition, he had a playful spirit that made dealing with him a pleasure."

Mr. Quigley was the recipient of several honors from professional organizations, including the Pepper Pot Award from the Public Relations Society of America and the Crystal Prism Award from the Philadelphia Ad Club.

In the 1960s, he taught English for a year at Abington High School and then was a reporter at the Burlington County Times before joining Gray & Rodgers Advertising in Philadelphia. In the early 1970s he moved to Elkman Advertising, where his biggest accounts were McDonald's restaurants in Pennsylvania and Virginia.

In 1974, as vice president and public relations director at Elkman, Mr. Quigley helped establish the first Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia. The concept of providing a home for families of seriously ill children who were hospitalized would grow to become an international phenomenon.

Proud of his Irish heritage, he was famous for the annual St. Patrick's Day cards he sent friends and clients with an enclosed felt shamrock to attach to a lapel.

Mr. Quigley grew up in Shenandoah, Pa. He earned a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in English from Villanova University.

Since 1962 he had been married to Mary Lou Scanlan. They met at Villanova, where she was a nursing student.

Mr. Quigley wrote theater reviews while working for the Burlington County Times and in later years enjoyed Broadway productions

In addition to his wife, Mr. Quigley is survived by a son, Darren; daughter Ali Cleveland; and seven grandchildren.

Friends may call from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m., Friday, Oct. 19, at Inglesby-Givnish Funeral Home, 600 E. Main St. Maple Shade. A Funeral Mass will follow at noon Friday at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church, 42 W. Main St., Moorestown. Burial will be in Lakeview Memorial Park, Cinnaminson.

Donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, 1851 Old Cuthbert Rd., Cherry Hill, N.J.


Contact Sally A. Downey

at 215-854-2913 or sdowney@phillynews.com.

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