Hall of Distinguished Alumni
Carol Martin Gatton
Born near Bremen, Kentucky, on May 25, 1932. Banking
and Automobile Dealership Entrepreneur. University of Kentucky, B.S., 1954.
C. M. "Bill"
Gatton's start as an entrepreneur began as president and general manager of
Bill Gatton Motors in Owensboro, Ky., in 1959, just a half-decade after his
graduation from college. That lone dealership has since mushroomed to Bill Gatton
Chevy - Cadillac, which now incorporates eight additional auto dealerships in
Alabama, Texas and Tennessee. He also opened a Honda dealership in Bristol,
Tenn., where he remains owner and general manager.
His entry into banking
began as a director of Central Bank & Trust Company in Owensboro, where
he would later be named chairman of the executive committee. He would later
chair Area Bancshares Inc., an Owensboro holding company that owns four banks.
Other banking interests
include the Bank of Bloomington, Ind.; Crestwood Banking Co. of Crestwood, Ky.;
First City Bank & Trust Co.; Farmers National Bank of Glasgow, Ky. and the
Bowling Green Bank in Bowling Green, Ky.
In addition to his
degree at UK, he holds an M.B.A. in finance and banking from the University
of Pennsylvania Wharton Graduate School.
Past and present
business association affiliations include the National Dealer Council of Chevrolet
and Cadillac Motor Divisions of the General Motors Corporation and the General
Motors Presidents Council.
He has been active in civic interests in Bristol,
Tenn. and Owensboro.
He is a military
veteran, entering the U.S. Army as a second lieutenant. He completed two years
of active duty in 1956.
In 1995, he made
a multi-million dollar gift to the College of Business and Economics at UK,
the largest gift ever made to the University. The gift has enabled the college
to advance the quality of education available to students enrolled and the quality
of research conducted here. In his honor, the UK Board of Trustees later renamed
the college "The Carol Martin Gatton College of Business and Economics."
Carol Martin "Bill" Gatton was inducted
into the Hall of Distinguished Alumni on May 19, 2000.