Arthur Edsel Earley

Published 12:19 pm Wednesday, November 10, 2010

WESTFIELD, NY – Arthur Edsel Earley, age 87, of Chase St., Westfield, New York, died Monday afternoon, November 8, 2010 at home.

Born on March 28, 1923 in Ahoskie, NC, a son of the late Lawrence and Nancy (Dilday) Earley, Arthur graduated from Wake Forest University in 1943. Upon graduation he served for three years in the United States Army, attaining the rank of Second Lieutenant. Following his tour of duty, Arthur attended graduate school at the University of North Carolina where he completed work for a Master of Arts degree.

In 1949 he joined the advertising and sales promotion department of General Electric’s Lamp division in Nela Park, Cleveland, Ohio. In 1956 he joined Meldrum and Fewsmith, an international advertising firm headquartered in Cleveland.  He became Chairman and Chief Executive Officer in 1970; where he remained until his retirement in 1983.

Following his retirement, he and his late wife, Edith Black Earley, who died in 1995, divided their time between Singer Island, Florida, where he was a member of the Royal Poincenetta Chapel in Palm Beach and Chautauqua, New York where he was a member of The Hurlbut Memorial Church.

He was a member of the Wake Forest University Board of Visitors for many years and received the University’s Distinguished Alumni award in 1975.

Art was a Trustee of the Cleveland Playhouse, The Cleveland Institute of Music and the Cleveland Theater Festival. He was a director and Officer of the Cleveland Arts Council and was President of the Cleveland Hearing and Speech Center. He devoted a great deal of his time to his profession of Communications, serving on several regional and national boards. He had been involved in many community organizations and had received many honors throughout his career.

Arthur is survived by his sister, Emma Earley Parker of Rocky Mount, NC and his best friend, Courtney W. Humphrey, with whom he shared his home. Several nieces and nephews also survive.

No calling hours will be observed.  Funeral services will be private.  Memorials may be made to the Chautauqua Foundation, c/o the Chautauqua Institute, Chautauqua, NY 14722.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the MASON Funeral Home, 37 Clinton St., Westfield, NY 14787.  Log on to to send Art’s family a message of sympathy.