Ray visited New Zealand and left an impression
Ray came to New Zealand at about the same time I was embarking on a career in direct marketing, perhaps 20 or 25 years ago. He was the keynote speaker at one of the first conferences I attended - and I was blown away.
Ray had such creative ideas, he put them over with passion, and I fell in love with him. I interviewed him for New Zealand's MARKETING magazine, and thus got to know more of his secrets.
Little tools to help people develop their business -- simple ones, like those giveaway books he published crammed full of great ideas, and the perforated business cards inside the cover.
When he spoke to us he was an inspiration, telling us how to "steal" other people's ideas in an acceptable way of course. Many of my ideas were inspired
I smiled when I read someone else's comments about the check shirt - and I remember braces, and an outrageous cap too. He was like no other presenter, ever... and the whole presentation was dynamic, vibrant, alive. Ray took us to the baseball game, we don't know a lot about baseball in NZ, but he brought it alive for us. I wouldn't have been surprised if someone had walked into that stuffy conference room selling hotdogs.
Over the past 20 or 25 years ago I have often thought of him, what would Ray do in this or that situation, and smiled. So recently I thought it would be fun to see if I could track him down and I did. He remembered Auckland, NZ, he remembered the DMA Conference, he didn't remember me - but that's to be expected. I asked him if it was likely he'd come back to NZ for a conference, and he told me he'd like to but I didn't realise that his health was fragile at that time.
I will always remember you, Ray, and the "ray of sunshine" you've been in my life. Thank you so much.
My condolences to the family and friends that Ray cared for so much, and who loved and cared for Ray too.
Do you have a favorite Ray Jutkins story?
If so, please send it along to and I'll make it part of this website.
With fond memories of Ray and with deep respect for his family.