Andrew J. McKelvey, the man who built Monster.com into a worldwide job search brand, died Thursday in New York City from pancreatic cancer.
In the 1990s, the 74-year-old billionaire fashioned what is today Monster Worldwide from a Yellow Pages advertising firm and two of the earliest online job boards, The Monster Board and Online Career Center. McKelvey got into the advertising business in 1967 when he founded Telephone Marketing Program, which would later lend its acronym to the fledgling advertising conglomerate, TMP Worldwide.
In the early years, the Yellow Pages advertising division was the financial engine for the business. But by 2003, in acknowledgment of the direction the company was headed, TMP Worldwide became Monster Worldwide. Three years later the division was sold off piecemeal with capital fund management firm Veronis Suhler Stevenson getting the North American portion.
By then McKelvey was on his way out as chairman and CEO of the company he founded. He resigned in late 2006 in the midst of an investigation by the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission into the backdating of stock options by the company. McKelvey later admitted to playing a role in authorizing the backdating and paid a cash settlement. Because of his already advanced cancer, prosecutors agreed to postpone further court action.
Less well known is McKelvey’s philanthropy. The Associated Press says that since 2001, he has donated $25 million to the Andrew J. McKelvey Lung Transplantation Center at Emory University in Atlanta and has given $3 million to the Andrew J. McKelvey Lower School at the Hewitt School in New York.
His McKelvey Foundation has supported over 600 college students across the country, and he has provided funding for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and for the Andrew J. McKelvey Campus Center at his alma mater, Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pa.
McKelvey is survived by his children, Geoffrey, Stuart, Christine, Amanda, as well as six grandchildren.