Steven Murphy

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Steven Murphy
Steven Murphy Musée d'Orsay 2012.jpg
Steven Murphy at the Musée d'Orsay, October 2012
BornMarch 1954 (age 65)
Alma materGeorgetown University
Spouse(s)Ann Pleshette Murphy

Steven Murphy (born March 1954) is an American business executive and prominent figure in the international art market.[1] Previously CEO of Christie's, and before that, publishing firm Rodale, Murphy is currently Managing Partner at London-based Murphy & Partners.[2][3]

Early life[edit]

Steven Pleshette Murphy was born in March 1954, he graduated from Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. with a bachelor's in English literature.[2]


Murphy worked at the publisher's Simon & Schuster from 1985, serving as a division president until 1991, when he joined EMI / Angel Records as its president,[4] his tenure at EMI ended in 1998 with his appointment to Disney Publishing Worldwide as managing director.[4][5]

He joined the privately held publishing firm Rodale in 2000 as COO and president, and subsequently became the first non-family member to be appointed CEO, in 2002.[6][7] Credited with the turnaround of Rodale's fortunes, notable events during his time there included the publishing of its first big success, The South Beach Diet,[8] Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, and the growth of magazine title Men’s Health.[9][10] According to the company, it experienced its most profitable period under his decade long tenure.[8]

In 2004 he was named one of BusinessWeek’s Top 25 Best Managers of the Year.[10]

In 2010 Murphy was appointed CEO of Christie's,[11] he was hired to bring the auction house online and expand its sales in the Far East and other new markets.[12] He spent $50 million on expanding the company's internet presence and infrastructure, including the hiring of experts,[5] his departure from Christie's in 2014 drew some speculation as to the success of his tenure, despite happening not long after Christie's achieved the biggest single art auction sale value in history - selling $853 million worth of contemporary and post-war art.[13][14]

Murphy was on the board of directors of Ralph Lauren from 2005 to 2010, stepping down to act as a strategic consultant to the management.[6]

In 2015 Murphy founded the international art advisory, Murphy & Partners.[15]

Murphy was appointed to the board of trustees for the Victoria and Albert Museum for a period of four years from 1 January 2017.[16]

Personal life[edit]

Murphy is married to the parenting counselor and author, Ann Pleshette Murphy.[17]


  1. ^ "MURPHY PARTNERS LLP - Officers". Companies House. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  2. ^ a b Moules, Jonathan (20 September 2013). "The art of online retail". Financial Times. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  3. ^ Gerlis, Melanie (3 October 2017). "Ex-Christie's chief goes global with advisory enterprise". The Art Newspaper. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  4. ^ a b "Steven Pleshette Murphy: Executive Profile & Biography". Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  5. ^ a b Carol Vogel, Graham Bowley (2 December 2014). "Steven Murphy, Christie's Chief, to Step Down". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  6. ^ a b Singh, Prachi (18 May 2015). "Steven Murphy to serve as consultant to Ralph Lauren". Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  7. ^ Karp, Gregory (24 February 2000). "Disney Co. Executive To Head Rodale Inc. Steven Pleshette Murphy, 45, Will Take The Company's Reins Early Next Month". The Morning Call. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  8. ^ a b "Maria Rodale to Succeed Steve Murphy". Publisher's Weekly. 31 July 2009. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
  9. ^ Flamm, Matthew (30 July 2009). "CEO out as family takes reins at Rodale". Crain's New York Business. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  10. ^ a b Erst, Amanda (30 July 2009). "Rodale CEO Leaves, Replaced By Founder's Granddaughter". Ad Week. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  11. ^ Aspden, Peter (24 June 2011). "The art world is exploding". Financial Times. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  12. ^ Fletcher, Kim (10 March 2014). "The art of sales". Brunswick. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  13. ^ Macquisten, Ivan (8 December 2014). "Now Christie's lose their CEO as Murphy exits". Antiques Trade Gazette. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  14. ^ Holton, Kate (2 December 2014). "Head of auction house Christie's to step down amid record sales run". Reuters. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  15. ^ Loader Wilkinson, Tara (12 August 2016). "The World's Top Art Consultants". Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  16. ^ "Prime Minister appoints four new trustees to the Board of the Victoria & Albert Museum". GOV.UK. 1 December 2016. Retrieved 2018-04-25.
  17. ^ "Ann Pleshette Murphy". Retrieved 2018-04-25.