Derek Holder: trailblazer

Professor Derek HolderA lot of good things have been said about Derek since he died in February, but I just wanted to add my little bit.

I first met Derek back in 1982/3 when I was persuaded to lecture about financial evaluation on the Diploma. Just a bit of a seminar I was told, easy – although it was over 2 nights. Imagine my surprise when I turned up at Imperial College to be confronted by lecture theatre full to the brim of eager direct marketing students!

And that is a testament to the passion and foresight Derek had – only a couple of years after the launch the Diploma was attracting not only enough people to pack a lecture theatre at Imperial but to do the same at several other venues at the same time.

From a personal point of view I had a thoroughly great time lecturing all across the UK on the diploma and contributing to the IDM Direct Marketing Guide. It also made me a better marketeer as I had to think much harder about what I was doing.

Derek not only saw the opportunity of providing a direct marketing course ( at a time when it was frowned upon by our above the line cousins) but drove it with a belief and a passion that changed what was considered little more than a technique into a profession. And in way laid the groundwork for the integrated marketing of today.

Thank you Derek.

– Russell

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