Founder, Sidener and Van Riper

Merle Sidener was the chairman of the National Vigilance Committee of the Associated Advertising Clubs of the World from 1914 to 1920, contributing wise and vigorous leadership to the advancement and acceptance of truth in advertising campaign. He not only launched the campaign, but coined the slogan as well. A strong believer in the educational methods in the fight for truth in advertising, Elbert Hubbard called him a "straight-speaking, true-thinking, incorruptable fighter." He was a founder of the committee’s successor, the Better Business Bureau.

His company, Sidener and Van Riper, was a charter member of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (AAAA). He gave strong support to the AAAA’s pioneer work of developing and promoting sound advertising standards. He served as vice president of the AAAA and for several terms on its executive board.

As a member of the AAAA committee on agency service from 1928 to 1931, he helped prepare three important booklets: Buying and Selling Advertising Agency Service, How to Choose an Advertising Agency, and Teach Advertisers to Select Advertising Agencies - Not Plans. These were widely disseminated among agencies and advertisers, greatly improving the standards of agency-client relationships.

He served effectively in the Associated Advertising Clubs of the World as chairman of its Committee on Relation, member of its National Advertising Commission, and as representative on its Joint Assembly. In the Advertising Federation of America he was a member of the Council of Departmental Activities.

Through sound and far-sighted advertising practice, he won national prominence for his agency and presented an inspiring example of honesty and integrity for other to follow.

Throughout his lifetime, he devoted himself to helping and guiding young people in his church, in his school system, in civic affairs and in business. He received the Junior Chamber of Commerce 1941 Award of Merit as an "outstanding American."