Hanna named Jack White Award recipient; 2022 Leadership Fort Smith grads announced

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 1,931 views 

Bill Hanna has been selected as the 2022 Jack White Leadership Award recipient. The award has for more than 30 years recognized community and business leaders who have had a significant impact on the area, according to the Fort Smith Regional Chamber of Commerce.

The chamber also on Friday announced graduates of the 2022 Leadership Fort Smith (LFS) program. The chamber manages the award program and the LFS program. The Jack White award was created as a tribute to the contributions Jack White made to the community and to acknowledge the impact of leaders in the Fort Smith region.

White was an employee of OG&E for 35 years, a U.S. Navy veteran, family man, and lifelong learner. He highly regarded for his service, leadership, reputation and collaboration to make the Fort Smith a better place, the news release said.

White died in 1997 at the age of 57. The void he left has since been “filled by the work of other leaders that carry his spirit of servant leadership, hard work, and determination in pushing for progress to get things done to make our region a better place to live,” the chamber has said.

Hanna is the president and CEO of Hanna Oil and Gas Co., a third-generation, family-owned business. He joined the company in 1983 and has worked in a variety of capacities. Hanna has been instrumental in numerous projects including bike and walking trails, skate park and beautification projects throughout the community, the chamber noted in Friday’s (July 8) press release.

Hanna has served on the Fort Smith Boys & Girls Club Board of Directors for the past 12 years and served as President in 2018 and 2019. During his presidency, the club conducted a campaign that raised $2.6 Million to renovate Hunts Park, a multi-use sports complex.

Bill Hanna, president of CEO of Hanna Oil and Gas Co.

“No matter the project, Bill makes a personal commitment to be certain that the outcomes are successful. One of his most impactful accomplishments was the transformation of an old and discarded building (the former Shipley Baking Company). This new renovated space has provided our city with a modern multi-use space that younger generations gravitate to,” the chamber noted in the release.

“It’s an honor to be thought of that way. If you live in Fort Smith and you’re involved in the community, you know it’s (Jack White Leadership Award) an amazing honor. … It’s truly humbling and I appreciate it,” Hanna told Talk Business & Politics.

Hanna, who is chairman of the Central Business Improvement District which has some authority over development in downtown Fort Smith, said giving back to community has been a family tradition.

“It’s been an important thing for us. You know, my dad set the vision for us about that early on, to have that commitment to the community,” Hanna said.

The award presentation to Hanna and graduation of the LFS 2022 class is set for July 14. Link here for more info about the event.

Following are previous Jack White Leadership Award recipients.
1990 Hazel Evans
1991 Nancy Orr
1992 Ross Pendergraft
1993 David Olive
1994 Sandi Sanders
1996 Robert E. Miller
1997 Ray Baker
1998 Jim Spears
1999 Josie Decker
2000 Joel Stubblefield
2001 Benny Gooden
2002 Robert A. Young III
2003 Carter Hunt
2004 Charles Shuffield
2005 Roland S. Boreham, Jr.
2006 Dorothy Rappeport
2007 Don Flanders
2008 Edward “Sandy” Sanders
2009 Mark Rumsey
2010 Sister Judith Marie Keith
2011 Philip H. Merry, Jr.
2012 Sam M. Sicard (posthumously)
2013 Melody Trimble
2014 Ivy Owen
2015 Col. Mark Anderson
2016 Steve Clark
2017 Sam T. Sicard
2018 Dr. Jerry Stewart (posthumously)
2019 Jason Green
2020 Trent Goins and George McGill
2021 Charlotte Tidwell

Following are members of the 2022 Leadership Fort Smith class.
Tristin Bolton – University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture
Marcus Booker – Arkansas Air National Guard
Davin Chitwood – Kirkham.IT
Lindsay Conley – River Town Federal Credit Union
Chris Davis – Fort Smith Public Schools
Nate Deason – MAHG Architecture, Inc.
Erin Farrah – Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkoma
Shea Foldvary – United Way of Fort Smith Area
Ashley Gerhardson – Arkansas Colleges of Health Education
Ashley Goodson – University of Arkansas at Fort Smith
Jackson Goodwin – Mickle Wagner Coleman, Inc.
Zachary Gramlich – Fort Smith Public Schools
Shawn Hinkle – Fort Smith Public Schools
Katie Hug – ArcBest Technologies
Chance Locklear – Landmark PLC, CPA
Brogan Lopez – Riley Farm Dental
Lance McAvoy – city of Fort Smith
Michelle McCurry – Propak Logistics, Inc.
Omar Portillo – Firstar Bank
Sara Putman – Bookish
Curtis Ralston – Mercy Clinic Fort Smith
Tina Root – University of Arkansas at Fort Smith
Joshua Sykes – First National Bank of Fort Smith
Eddie Vansell – ABB