Submitted by: Veronica Coffin
Alan Caruba Public relations consultant for pest management group; former Morris County journalist, prolific book reviewer and daily blogger known for conservative views on public policy, 77 Alan Caruba, an author, commentator, and humorist, passed away at home on June 15, 2015, at the age of 77. Born in Newark, N.J., from the age of five Mr. Caruba resided in Maplewood, N.J., living there for 62 years until selling his home in 2004 and moving to the Gaslight Commons in neighboring South Orange, N.J. He was a graduate of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla., class of 1959, after which he served in the U.S. Army for two years before returning to the home which he shared with his parents. Mr. Caruba was the editor of the East Orange Record – a weekly newspaper – until moving on as a reporter for the Morris County Daily Record. For the bulk of his professional life, he was a public relations counselor working with a wide variety of clients.
From 1986 until his passing, he represented the New Jersey Pest Management Association, later serving in the same capacity as well for the New York Association. In 1970, a collection of poetry, “People Touch,” was published by Pocket Books. It was followed by a novel and later by two collections of his commentaries, “Warning Signs” and “Right Answers,” both published by Merrill Press. He was a contributor to many magazines and newspapers, writing about a broad selection of topics, but was best known in his senior years as a conservative writer whose daily commentaries were posted on his blog and on many news and opinion websites and blogs. A book reviewer for over 50 years, Mr. Caruba was a founding member of the National Book Critics Circle in 1973, ultimately writing a monthly report on new non-fiction and fiction, “Bookviews,” until his death. Since the 1970s, he was also a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors and the Society of Professional Journalists. In the 1980s, Mr. Caruba gained an international reputation as a humorist as the creator of a media spoof called The Boring Institute. In this capacity, he published annual lists of the most boring celebrities and films of the years, and was a guest on countless radio shows and also made appearances on television. In the wake of 9/11, he ended the Institute’s activities. He also created The National Anxiety Center as a clearinghouse for information about “scare campaigns” to influence public policy and opinion. In this capacity, he was a longtime opponent of environmental and comparable claims.
Never married, Mr. Caruba was predeceased by his parents, Robert and Rebecca Caruba. His mother was a cookbook author who taught gourmet cooking for three decades in local adult schools and was also an internationally known authority on wine. His father was a CPA. He is survived by his brother, Robert Caruba Jr.; his nephew, David Caruba, and his niece, Cathy Bridges. At Alan’s request, there will be no funeral service. Arrangements are by the Preston Funeral Home of South Orange.
Published in Star-Ledger on June 21, 2015– See more at: http://obits.nj.com/obituaries/starledger/obituary.aspx?n=alan-caruba&pid=175127147#sthash.5LywZdCa.dpuf