Arthur Bloom, an award-winning CBS director credited with helping give 60 Minutes its ticking- stopwatch open, died Jan. 28, of cancer at his home in Grandview-on-Hudson, N.Y. He was 63.

A graduate of New York University, Bloom spent his entire 45-year career at CBS, starting as a messenger in the mailroom in 1960. During his long career, he won awards for his direction of the 1976 Democratic and Republican conventions and also directed coverage of several documentaries and breaking-news stories.

At 60 Minutes, along with then-executive producer Don Hewitt, he influenced the program’s basic style, including the now iconic stopwatch; the first one used was Bloom’s own Minerva. It was first used to kick off the broadcast’s third edition on Oct. 22, 1968. Bloom was also known for other graphic flourishes.

Friendly and candid with the on-air personalities, Bloom helped coach Dan Rather when Rather was tapped to replace Walter Cronkite as anchor of The CBS Evening News.

Bloom is survived by his wife, Marla; children, Scott and Jill; brother, Richard; and four grandchildren.