Ginger Reeder
Ginger Reeder

The news of Bruce Willis' frontotemporal dementia diagnosis hit me like a ton of bricks. No, I never represented him; I've never even seen him in person at an event.

The reason I was so struck by the news was that it reminded me of the importance of strong client-agency relationships that do not die, even if the brain does.

My firm represented Neiman Marcus for 15 years and worked closely with Ginger Reeder, who was VP-corporate communications at the upscale retailer.

She of great intelligence, energy and style, has the same dreaded disease.

If this article were put in front of her today, she wouldn't be able to comprehend its contents or even recognize my name, despite having been joined at the hip for all of those great years.

When we placed Ginger on The TODAY Show for the first time who knew that the segment for TODAY would become one of the longest-running feature segments in the show's history.

Ginger Reeder at The TODAY Show
Reeder at The TODAY Show

Ginger was the fantasy gift guru who found the wildest and most interesting gifts for the Neiman Marcus Christmas Book.

She regaled about each fantasy gift on TODAY as if it were her own child. Her enthusiasm and excitement made her a mainstay on the show, and many other programs as well. The producers and talent loved her. We did, too.

All of that, except the memories, is gone now. I have visited Ginger, who retired from Neiman Marcus in 2017, in her wonderful assisted living facility in Dallas, and hope to return soon.

On each visit I would present her with flowers, knowing that she no longer knew me. But I told her I loved her, and cried each time on the way out.


Tom Goodman is founder, president & CEO of Goodman Media International in New York.