Mr. Rose was the "consummate businessman, an entrepreneur who was thoughtful and client oriented," said a longtime Bates colleague, Mark Morris, vice-chairman of Bates Worldwide. Mr. Rose and his partner in AC&R, Alvin Chereskin, were pioneers of so-called sell and sell-through programs popular with retailer clients. AC&R's clients included Seiko, Estee Lauder, London Fog, Arrow Shirts, Sterling Automobiles and the Greek Tourism Board.
He "had panache," said Harry Koenig, chief financial officer at AC&R and now chief operating officer at Omnicom Group's LLKRF. Mr. Rose was known for wearing stylish garb, which frequently included Italian-made Borsalino hats.
Following the mid-1980s sale of AC&R to Ted Bates World- wide, Mr. Rose ran the agency's international operations. "Steve was very comfortable [abroad]," said Donald Zuckert, a former boss of Mr. Rose and ex-chairman-CEO of Ted Bates Worldwide. "Steve won [international agencies'] confidence." When he returned stateside, he oversaw the U.S. affiliate group. "Steve became quite a force within the Ted Bates organization," said Mr. Morris, adding, the "message is you can sell to a larger company and not disappear."
A collector of modern art and vintage cars, he was a "bit of a Renaissance man," Mr. Zuckert said. Through a company called EvenRose, Mr. Rose was involved with several London productions of Chekov plays. He was also an investor in numerous Broadway and off-Broadway productions, including "The Producers."