John graduated magna cum laude in history, worked on The Daily Princetonian, and joined Quadrangle Club. After two years in the Army, he earned an MBA from Harvard.
He joined the Times in 1962 as a Washington reporter and switched to personnel as part of the management team assembled by Arthur “Punch” Sulzberger after the 1965 newspaper strike. In John’s unpublished memoir, he says, “Punch Sulzberger telephoned me and said, ‘I want you to come to New York and straighten them out,’ meaning the firm’s labor relations.” The management team that Sulzberger created in 1965 transformed the newspaper in many ways, adding sections for food, home design, science, and entertainment.
John’s career with The Times was a series of promotions from personnel and planning to executive management. In 1981 he became general manager and executive vice president. He retired in 1988 and moved to Seattle.
His wife, Margaret, died in 2016. Their children, Dana Pomfret and John E. Pomfret II, survive. Our condolences go to them.