There are office romances, and then there is the story of Evelyn and Leonard Lauder. The couple represents one branch of the family behind the Estée Lauder Companies, the cosmetics empire that last year generated $7.32 billion
, 63 years after being co-founded by, and named for, Leonard's mother. For many years, Leonard served as the company's chief executive
and today, at 76, he remains chairman emeritus and the board's senior
member. His wife of 50 years, Evelyn, 73, is the company's senior
corporate vice president and oversees the fragrance
arm of the business. They admit that they sometimes kiss in the office, but always behind closed doors.
公室恋情有许多，但还没有哪段能像伊夫林•劳德(Evelyn)和伦纳德•劳德(Leonard Lauder)的故事那样，被演绎到如此的极致。这对夫妇是化妆品王国雅诗兰黛(Estee Lauder)背后家族中的一支。去年收入73.2亿美元的雅诗兰黛是伦纳德的母亲在63年前参与共同创立的，该公司也是以他的母亲的名字命名的。很多年以来，伦纳德都是该公司的首席执行长，而如今，76岁的他仍然担任著名誉董事长和董事会高级董事的职位。伦纳德结发50年的妻子、73岁的伊夫林是雅诗兰黛资深公司副主席，并主管公司的香水业务。两人承认他们有时会在办公室里接吻，不过他们会关起门来。
is also about civic engagement
. Their foundation
donated $50 million to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center for the recently opened Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center. She is the founder
and chairwoman of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and the force behind the pink ribbon
as a symbol
of breast cancer
awareness. Leonard is chairman emeritus of the Whitney Museum of American Art to which his art foundation
donated $131 million in 2008.
两人的亲密关系还和公益活动有关。他们的基金会为新近开设的伊夫林•劳德乳房中心(Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center)向纪念斯隆-凯特琳癌症中心(Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center)捐献了五千万美元。她是乳癌研究基金会(Breast Cancer Research Foundation)的创始人和董事长，也是粉红丝带乳癌防治运动背后的推动力量。伦纳德是纽约惠特尼艺术博物馆(Whitney Museum of American Art)的名誉董事长，他的艺术基金会在2008年向该博物馆捐赠了1.31亿美元。
Inside their apartment
, the decor is formal
but filled with homespun
touches like needlepoint pillows that read 'Fly first class or your children will.' And while Leonard and Evelyn's demeanor is careful-around a coffee table he sits in an ergonomically correct chair he has rolled over from behind his desk; she drinks a red-colored juice from a glass covered with plastic wrap impaled by a straw-their chemistry
is undeniable. He admits to wearing pink shirts and ties to please his wife. ('My underwear
is blue,' he insists.) When Evelyn first walks into the room, Leonard says, 'Don't you look pretty.'
'That's so sweet,' she replies, coy as a teenager. She was in fact a teenager when they met. Leonard lent her a book and then would call her to ask if she had finished reading
it. She would tell him she hadn't to ensure he would call again.
'I had to marry her to get the book back,' Leonard says. 'Maybe I should have just bought another copy.' Evelyn bats her Estée Lauder mascara-covered eyelashes: 'It would have cost you less,' she says.
Evelyn on Leonard
A girl I knew from high school set us up. At the time she said, 'His mother owns a very, very small cosmetics company.' My dad had met Leonard when he came to pick me up and when he brought me home, there was my father in the living room. This was very unusual
. I thought my mother had died. I said, 'What are you doing in the living room?' He said, 'Oh, I just wanted you to know, that's a nice boy.' We had Sunday afternoon dates. He taught me how to drive out at Jones Beach when the parking lot was empty and I burned out the brakes on his Plymouth.
When Leonard and I were first married, we would go to cities and he would see the president of the store and I would see the buyer, the beauty advisers. I would stand behind the counter
. So the two of us would hit the city with different perspectives. And then we would take out a beauty editor from the local newspaper.
We have always been a good team, a good one-two punch. I got into a taxi after we had been married about 18 years and the driver asked me what my sign was. I said, 'Leo.' Then he asked, 'What's your husband's sign?' and I told him Pisces. 'That's a bad combination,' he said. 'One of you always has to give in.' 'I know,' I said. 'That's what makes it work!'
If I ever made a cologne
for Leonard it would be called Handsome. In the office sometimes I would be standing
in the hallway
at my assistant's desk and I would feel a hand brush my back. I would look up and he would say, 'Oh, it's you.'
If one of us feels strongly
about something, the other one is always happy to back down. There was a time when Leonard sold a painting
and I happened to be at home when the moving men came and I said, 'Why are you here?' They said, 'We came to pick up the such-and-such picture.' I said, 'Oh no. Bye. You're leaving.' Leonard had the sale reversed.
There isn't a picture in the house that we're not emotionally attached to. For my birthday one summer, Leonard bought me a painting
by Roy Lichtenstein from that Japanese period that I'm crazy about. Another year, he asked what I'd like. I said, 'I would like to have you for one day.' I asked for a trip to Washington, where the National Gallery had just built the East Wing. That was my present.
我们对这间房子里的每一幅画都倾注了情感。有一年夏天我的生日，伦纳德给我买下了一幅我疯狂迷恋的日本时代的罗伊•奇特斯坦(Roy Lichtenstein)的画作。还有一年，他问我想要什么。我说，"我想拥有你一整天。"我要求去华盛顿，当时国家美术馆(National Gallery)刚刚建好了东馆。那就是我的生日礼物。
Leonard on Evelyn
My mother, Estée, never had a partner
. My father was a great husband, but my mother, she always tried to be the force in the marriage. Seeing her with my father was not necessarily
for anything other than 'I'm not going to let that happen to me.' In our case, we have a great partner
ship. My advice to couples who are thinking of working
together would be: If you have a temper
, don't. If you are uptight with each other, don't do it. If you are easy together, if you laugh easily, and you can kid, get one another off a tree-if all those three things work out OK, then try it. It could be a lot of fun.
At work, we each have our own lives. She watches over the fragrance
end-it's a major part of our business, and there she reigns supreme
. Even though she oversees it as an individual, all the names we have on the fragrance
to us as a couple: Sensuous. Intuition. Beautiful. Pleasures. All those names are names that have sprung
, in truth, from our relationship
. We did, on occasion, collaborate: I'd walk by her office and she'd say, 'Come on in here,' and there would be an arm with three or four little marks on it and she'd say, 'Sniff this,' and whatever
I'd sniff was terrific
. I'd leave. And you'd have just seen the CEO in action.
We always loved art. Very early on in our marriage we used to go out to Chicago every summer for a week to work. We would go to the same gallery
and buy a print by an artist that Evelyn had admired. So essentially
if someone were to ask me about our marriage, I would say we grew up together, and if you were to ask me about art, I would say we discovered art and artists together in the same way we discovered the world together.
We may sometimes not buy together, but we love together. Sometimes things come home and Evelyn says, 'I don't like that.' And it goes away. I may buy things without her, but I don't keep things without her. There are two different verbs. To buy and to keep.
But Evelyn is about much more than just her love for books and art or her work at Estée Lauder. I'm thrilled and proud of her work on breast cancer
, too. In a city where there is always someone trying
you for something, the day doesn't go by that the phone doesn't ring: 'Can we have lunch with you?' 'Can you come to this event?' Here is a situation where it was virgin
territory. No one was doing anything about it. And it was Evelyn who said, 'I'm going to work on this on so many levels.' Whether it's about our joint projects or our separate worlds, when we are driving to the country or when we are at home, there is always a conversation when we are together.