The Lookout

Helen Gurley Brown, legendary Cosmopolitan editor, dead at 90

The Lookout

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(ABC News/File)

Helen Gurley Brown, longtime editor of Cosmopolitan magazine and author of the empowered-woman classic "Sex and the Single Girl," has died at age 90, according to a statement by her employer, Hearst Magazines.

Brown started as a copywriter on the West Coast before publishing "Sex and the Single Girl" in 1962. In it, she urged women to embrace their sexuality, earn their own money and put themselves forward in the workplace.

Seeking to continue the conversation sparked by her book, she created a mock-up of a new magazine to speak to this empowered woman. Hearst Magazines took an interest, and turned over the existing Cosmopolitan to Brown. According to Cosmo, the September 1965 issue was the first to "totally reflect Helen's vision." There are now 64 international editions of the publication.

"It would be hard to overstate the importance to Hearst of her success with Cosmopolitan, or the value of the friendship many of us enjoyed with her," read the statement from Hearst. "Helen was one of the world's most recognized magazine editors and book authors, and a true pioneer for women in journalism—and beyond."

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