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Arthur Bloom, 63; TV News Director Helped Get '60 Minutes' Ticking in '68

January 29, 2006|From Associated Press

NEW YORK — Award-winning news director Arthur Bloom, who helped found the acclaimed newsmagazine "60 Minutes" and donated his Minerva stopwatch to create the show's iconic ticking image, died Saturday of cancer. He was 63.

Bloom, who went to work in the CBS mailroom at 18, died at his home in Grandview-on-Hudson, N.Y., the network announced.

Besides his 38 years with "60 Minutes," Bloom helped train Dan Rather to succeed Walter Cronkite in the CBS News anchor chair in 1981.

Bloom's talent and humor "were the very spirit of CBS News," Cronkite said. "It is difficult to think of our craft without him."

Rather called Bloom "the most accomplished director of television news programs in history."

During Bloom's career at CBS, he was instrumental in the network's coverage of national politics. He directed coverage of the conventions for both parties from 1976 to 1988, the Ford-Carter and Reagan-Mondale presidential debates, and every election night from 1974 to 1990.

"60 Minutes" has captured 78 Emmy Awards and 11 Peabody Awards.

Bloom was there for the launch of "60 Minutes" in 1968. The now-famous ticking stopwatch was introduced on the third show.

"Artie had an eye for what worked visually and what didn't. He was invaluable to me," said "60 Minutes" creator Don Hewitt.

A native of New York City, Bloom began directing at 21 with WCBS-TV, the local New York station.

In 1966, he joined CBS News and two years later was directing "60 Minutes."

Bloom is survived by his wife of 40 years, Marla; a son; daughter; brother; and four grandchildren.

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