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Anna Wintour, Inspirer of Loyalty, Not-So-Secret Genius

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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It's the 25th anniversary of Anna Wintour's first arrival at Vogue, and the 20th of her ascension to the editorship. Nowadays many of us use and regard her as a representative symbol of the old guard, and certainly as a tyrannical employer. As an editor, she's treated as something of a one-trick pony, relying so strongly as she does on endless cover-testing for the magazine and use of the expected celebrity face plopped above a so-so gown, shot by an expected photographer. But two things go largely unmentioned: The often long tenures of the higher-level staff and their strength as makers of an editorial product.

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