Ruth, who at 69 passed away in March, was a Los Angeles Times journalist writing major pieces on environmental, consumer and real estate issues.
But what changed her life was when one day she read "Parade," a Sunday newspaper magazine that had gossipy pieces about celebrities.
Ruth realized that readers might like insider pieces on what the movie, TV and rock stars, famous athletes and business moguls and Arab oil titans were doing in buying and selling their homes, particularly homes in Beverly Hills and the surrounding areas.
Ruth Ryon LA Times: file photo
And readers might also like a description of those homes and their lavish grounds.
After persuading Los Angeles Times management to allow her to try it, on November 25th, 1984 Ruth published her first “Hot Property” column. The lead story was Johnny Carson buying a Malibu home for $9.5 million.
At the time this was the most money ever paid in the Malibu area for a home and Ruth described that oceanfront home for readers.
This began what would become for many thousands of people a must read column, published each Sunday on the front page of the Los Angeles Times real estate section and through syndication, published in other newspapers as well.
Ruth wrote over 1,300 columns before retiring in 2008. But to this day, “Hot Property” is so popular, that it continues under writer Lauren Beale.
One recent story included New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and his wife model and actress Gisele Bundchen selling their Los Angele area home for $40 million to rock impresario Dr. Dre.
But from our perspective – Here is what really matters: That a soft spoken, gentle and courteous woman as Ruth was could find the courage to present her idea to top management and convince them to proceed with her.
This courage can make all the difference in how successful one becomes and it can uplift many lives, if it is applied to products, services or issues that are meaningful to people's lives.