Newspaper chief executive Robert Bogle was born to John Bogle, a vice president and advertising director at The Philadelphia Tribune, and Roslyn Woods Bogle, an advocate and activist throughout the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area. In 1973, he graduated from Cheyney State College with his B.A. degree in urban studies and attended the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and Finance to study marketing and economics.
Bogle was first hired at The Philadelphia Tribune in 1970, and was named advertising director in 1973. He served in that position until 1977, when he became director of marketing. From 1981 to 1989, Bogle worked as executive vice president and treasurer for the Tribune and was then promoted to president and chief executive officer. In 1991, Bogle was appointed president of the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), where he served two terms. Among his achievements as president of the NNPA were the dedication of the new national headquarters in Washington, D.C., the introduction of the NNPA’s national wire service, and the establishment of new and enhanced relationships with major national advertisers, including Toys R Us, Procter & Gamble, U.S. Air, K-Mart, and Walt Disney World Company.
Bogle has served on the boards of U.S. Airways Group, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association, United Way of America, the Zoological Society of Philadelphia, the Workforce Investment Board, and the African American Chamber of Commerce. In addition, in 2009, Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter appointed Bogle to the Independence Blue Cross board of directors.
Bogle is chairman of the Hospitals and Higher Education Facilities Authority of Philadelphia and serves as a commissioner of the Delaware River Port Authority. He has served as chairman of the council of trustees of Cheyney University and is an advisor to the United Negro College Fund, a member of the executive committee of the Boy Scouts of America, and a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. He is also a founding member and president of the African American News and Information Consortium, a group of premier Black newspapers in some of the largest markets in the United States of America.
In 1993, Bogle was named one of Ebony magazine’s 100 most influential black Americans. In 1995, 1997 and 1999, the NNPA honored Bogle with the Russwurm Award, the highest honor to the “Best Newspaper in America.” Bogle received an honorary doctorate of humane letters degree from Drexel University in 2000.
Robert Bogle was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on June 11, 2014.