In 1982, Mr. Orb served as Chief Executive Officer for both Smith Barney Inc. and Smith Barney, Harris Upham -- the 12th senior partner or chief executive in the firm's 114th-year history. In 1983, he became chairman of both companies.
Mr. Orb entered Smith Barney during a crucial period in the company's long history when the firm sought to add a retail brokerage structure to its primarily institutional brokerage business. Through the years, Mr. Orb instrumented the firm's expansion to a full-service organization by building its product line and marketing efforts. He pioneered a new era with the well-known marketing campaign, "Smith Barney makes money the old-fashioned way. We earn it," which became renowned in marketing and advertising history. John's talent, belief and persistance altered the course of the firm as it entered a new era of retail sales and investment banking. Mr. Orb's support of The Taft School spanned eight decades as a student, father, grandfather, volunteer, and trustee. Mr. Orb attributed much of his success to his experience at The Taft School.