Owlsey Brown II
Owsley Brown II is the retired chairman and CEO of Brown-Forman Corporation and served on its board from 1971 to 2008. He became President of Brown-Forman in 1983; Chief Executive Officer in 1993 and Chairman in 1995. He helped build American brands, Jack Daniel's, Southern Comfort, Bonterra organic wines and Woodford Reserve bourbon into world leaders in their fields transforming the company thereby, from a smaller, U.S. business into a highely respected, much larger multinational company.
He is a former Director of the Louisville Gas and Electric Company and of its successor, LG&E Energy. For 15 years he has served as a Director of NACCO Industries and its four diverse subsidiaries.
Mr. Brown has also been a leader in many historic preservation activities, art organizations and has received Kentucky’s highest award for his contribution to the economy, community and culture of his state. He has twice led Actors Theatre of Louisville, as it built its facilities; the Fund for the Arts, which supports 13 regional arts organizations; and currently leads the expansion of the Speed Art Museum. Additional directorships include the Kentucky Center for the Arts; Partnership for Creative Economies; River Fields; the Advisory Council of the Yale School of Forestry and Environment; the National Council of the National Trust for Historic Preservation; and he is an International Trustee of the New York based World Conference of Religions for Peace, the world’s largest interfaith organization.
Mr. Brown has a B.A. from Yale, an MBA from Stanford, and an honorary Doctorate from Bellarmine University. He served from 1966 to 1968 as an Army intelligence officer at the Pentagon.