• Remembering Billboard Pioneer Joe Zukin (1926-2018)

    Billboard pioneer Joe Zukin, the founding patriarch of Meadow Outdoor Advertising, died December 4 in California.  He was 92.

    “Dad was a gracious man,” said son Chris Zukin. “He loved his family.  He loved the outdoor advertising family as well.”

    “He was truly a great role model for his children, grandchildren, friends, employees, and clients,” leading by example and showing respect to others, said son Mike Zukin.

    The Zukin family plans a memorial service after the holidays.

    Joe Zukin was inducted into the Outdoor Advertising Association of America Hall of Fame in 2013.

    “Joe stands out because of his commitment to customer service and community involvement, and for his passion for the business and his devotion to his employees,” said OAAA President and CEO Nancy Fletcher when Zukin entered the industry’s Hall of Fame.

    For 30 years, Zukin led family-owned Meadow Outdoor, which now is managed by Joe Zukin’s sons Chris, John, and Mike.

    Mike, Joe, John, and Chris Zukin in 2013, when Joe Zukin joined the industry’s Hall of Fame

    The Zukin family story reflects American history and its entrepreneurial energy.  Joe Zukin’s father, born in Russia in 1887, emigrated to New York and headed west, making garments.

    Actress Rosemary DeCamp models Zukin blouse (1947)

    Joe Zukin, born in 1926, was a US Army officer during the Allied occupation of Germany in 1945 and 1946.  At Stanford University, he was president of his fraternity.

    Joe Zukin founded a roadside attraction in San Jose (Frontier Village Amusement Park), becoming a billboard customer. He began acquiring billboard inventory in 1968.

    Meadow Outdoor Advertising now has billboards in California, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington State.

    Reflecting on Joe Zukin’s importance to the out of home advertising industry, OAAA’s Nancy Fletcher noted that the passing of Joe Zukin and former President George H.W. Bush occurred within days of each other.  “Both were old-school gentlemen, tough but kind, supportive but firm, patriots, and beloved patriarchs,” Fletcher said.

    Joe Zukin served on OAAA’s Board of Directors from 2003 to 2009; his son Mike Zukin now serves on the OAAA Board.  Meadow Outdoor is affiliated with sister company Stott Outdoor Advertising based in Chico, CA, led by Jim Moravec.

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