Milton I. Wick, Founder
Wick Communications Company
The name of the late Milton I. Wick, who founded Wick Communications Company with his brother, Jim, is among those listed in the Arizona Newspaper Hall-of-Fame. Mr. Wick died on November 30, 1981 at the age of 82. He was inducted posthumously into the Arizona Newspapers Hall of Fame at the 57th annual meeting of the state’s press association in nearby Scottsdale.
During his undergraduate years, Mr. Wick and his brother organized a book business in Lincoln, Nebraska. It employed college students to sell books to farmers during the summer months. The enterprise was so successful it was expanded to Iowa, Missouri and Kansas, employing more than 500 students during the three years of its existence.
The Wick Brothers: Rev. Stanley A., James L. and Milton I. Wick, 1941.
Mr. Wick started his career after graduation as a salesman, but turned to the publishing business in 1926 when he became owner and publisher of the Niles Daily Times in Niles, Ohio. Over a period of years his corporation acquired some 27 newspapers. He had been a director of the University of Nebraska Alumni Association since 1965, and was also a retired director of the University of Minnesota Alumni Association.
Mr. Wick was born February 20, 1899 in Bowdle, rural Edmunds County, South Dakota.
He attended Irving Grade School and South High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota, the University of Iowa and received his B.A. degree from the University of Nebraska in 1922.
From 1923 to 1926, he was employed in the sales department of McQuay-Norris Manufacturing Company, St. Louis, Missouri. In 1926 he married Rosemary Lumas and they had two sons, Walter M. and Robert J.
In 1926 he and his brother purchased the Niles Daily Times. His brother, James, was partner in all of the newspaper enterprises until his death in 1965 when Milton and sons, Walter and Robert, purchase James’ interests.
He was also publisher emeritus of the weekly newsletter Human Events.
The Wick Brothers: Walt M. Wick (left) and Robert J. Wick, sons of the late Milton I. Wick, served as co-chairmen of the Board of Directors.
Mr. Wick and his brother, accompanied by their wives, were the first American journalists to tour and report from European and Asiatic Russia and Siberia. Previous reports had been made from Moscow only. They lead the first group of American journalists, as Wick Editors Tours, to visit Poland and Czechoslovakia, and the Wicks were the first to enter and report from Hungary and Romania after the fall of the Iron Curtain.
It is noteworthy that the Wicks were in Hungary in May 1955, 18 months before the Hungarian revolt of October 1956, and reported that the Hungarians were outspoken in their hatred of the Russians. The Wicks were the only American journalists to witness and photograph the May Day Parade in Budapest, and to report that every tenth marcher in the May Day Parade was a Russian soldier in uniform.
He interviewed many of the world’s leading statesmen, among them: Anthony Eden, England; Chancellor Conrad Adenauer, West Germany; President Renee Coty, France; Chancellor Raub, Austria; Chancellor Figel, Austria; Vice Chancellor Ludwig Erhardt, West Germany; President Urho Kekkoen, Finland; King Paul and Queen Frederika, Greece; Col. Naguib, Premier of Egypt in 1953; Col. Shisheckly, Premier of Syria in 1953; and President Camille Shimoun, Lebanon.
His sons, Walt and Robert, continue the family tradition of serving the company.
In September 2004, the Wick brothers were named to the Arizona Newspaper Hall of Fame in honor of their devotion to newspapers, and their support of community journalism.