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The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture


A journalist and newspaper executive, Edith Kinney Gaylord was born on March 5, 1916, to Edward King (E. K.) and Inez Kinney Gaylord. E. K. Gaylord was editor and publisher of The Oklahoman and the Oklahoma City Times newspapers. Aside from two terms at a private school in Switzerland, Edith Gaylord attended public schools in Oklahoma City and was graduated from Classen High School. She attended Colorado College in Colorado Springs until her junior year, when she transferred to Wells College in Aurora, New York. In 1939 she earned a bachelor of arts degree. Edith Gaylord began her journalistic career on her father's Oklahoma City newspapers.

After World War II began, in 1942 she joined the Associated Press (AP) in New York. Five months later she was transferred to Washington, D.C., where she was the only woman on the AP general news staff. She covered Eleanor Roosevelt, the first wife of any U.S. president to hold news conferences. In 1944 Gaylord was elected president of the Women's National Press Club. In that position she also served as secretary of Mrs. Roosevelt's press conference committee and as liaison between the president's wife and members of the press. After President Roosevelt died in 1945, Gaylord covered the new first lady, Bess Truman.

When World War II ended, Gaylord returned to Oklahoma City to learn the business side of her father's newspapers. In the early 1950s she rejoined the AP in Washington to cover the 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in London, among other stories. Returning to Oklahoma, she quietly began supporting with her time and money numerous community organizations and projects. In time her philanthropy grew with the establishment in 1982 of the Inasmuch Foundation, providing support for education, the arts, health and human services, historic preservation, and environmental concerns. That same year she established the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation to support projects designed to improve the quality and ethical standard of professional journalism. Her patronage reflected her lifelong devotion to journalistic excellence.

Edith Kinney Gaylord died on January 28, 2001, at Oklahoma City's St. Anthony Hospital, her place of birth in 1916.

David Dary


David Dary, The Oklahoma Publishing Company's First Century: The Gaylord Family Story (Oklahoma City: The Oklahoma Publishing Co., 2003).


The following (as per The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition) is the preferred citation for articles:
David Dary, “Gaylord, Edith Kinney,” The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture, https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry?entry=GA026.

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