Veteran Philly Advertising Leader Dies

Agency accounts included Schmidt’s, Brillo

Al Paul Lefton Jr., the former president and CEO of the Al Paul Lefton Co. advertising agency in Philadelphia, died Tuesday at the age of 84.

Lefton’s father founded the agency in 1928 and the younger Lefton started working there in 1950 after graduating from Yale University. In 1964, Lefton succeeded his father as president and CEO and held that role until his retirement in 2010.

Through the years, the agency, which also had an office in New York, worked on brands such as Schmidt’s beer, Brillo, English Leather, Mack Trucks, Mazda, Michelin and RCA. Aloysius Butler & Clark acquired the shop in 2010.

Outside of advertising, Lefton served on the boards of a wide range of Philadelphia arts groups and charities, including the Northern Home for Children, Mann Music Center, Women’s Medical College and the University of the Arts.

Lefton grew up in Bethayres, Pa., and in recent years lived in both Gladwyne, Pa., and Siasconset, Mass. He is survived by his wife, Amarilice; two daughters, Alice and Marie; a son, Terry, who is editor at large at the Sports Business Journal and a former Brandweek reporter; and five grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, friends and relatives are making donations in Lefton's name to the Yale Alumni Fund, PO Box 2038, New Haven, Conn., 06521-2038.