The Sweet Smell of R. Couri Hay’s Success

The latest testament to press agent R. Couri Hay’s boundless powers of persuasion is a profile in this Sunday’s New York Times:

Once, Hay saw John Gotti and Imelda Marcos, dining separately, at a restaurant he was trying to get press for. He had a photographer shoot the two together. “The headline was: ‘Two Mob Bosses,’” he said.

“I know what the story is, and when there is no story, I create it,” Mr. Hay said.

Hay honed those creative skills in the 1970s as a gossip reporter for The National Enquirer. But seeing where the real money is, he eventually crossed over to nightclub investments and a spinoff PR operation.

The 65-year-old Hay’s life partner is 30 years his junior; he hits the party circuit pretty much every night; and at an age when most are worrying about early-bird specials, he prefers to be paid by some clients in champagne and caviar. Savor the rest of Corey Kilgannon’s piece here.

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