Sylvia Field Porter, known for her clear, straightforward writing and wise advice, broke ground as the first woman to write the financial section of a big-city newspaper. After her father’s death and the family’s ruin in the 1929 stock market crash, Porter changed her major to economics and apprenticed at various investment counseling firms. Under the gender-neutral byline S.F. Porter, she began writing financial advice columns for various journals, breaking into the New York Evening Post in 1935 and beginning a regular column there in 1938. In 1942, the Post finally realized that her gender was an asset and began publishing her full name and picture alongside her popular column that spelled out investments and money management concepts in layman’s terms. While economists had assumed women had no need to understand financial matters, Field insisted that women had a responsibility to understand money and tailored her advice to their needs. In 1978, she moved her column from the Post to the New York Daily News and syndicated it to 450 newspapers nationwide. She also co-wrote a number of books, including How to Live Within Your Income and Managing Your Money.
How to cite this page
Jewish Women's Archive. "Sylvia Field Porter." (Viewed on March 9, 2021) <https://jwa.org/people/porter-sylvia>.