Bill Child, the entrepreneur who led R.C. Willey Home Furnishings from a tiny operation in Syracuse to a thriving business with 14 stores, will speak at a Dean’s Convocation for the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University Sept. 30. Child sold the business to Warren Buffet in 1995 but is still chairman of the board for the successful company. Author Jeff Benedict, who has written a book about Child’s improbable journey: “How to Build a Business Warren Buffet Would Buy,” is also to speak at the convocation that is free and open to the public. It will be held in the Orson A. Christiansen Auditorium, room 215, from 12:30 – 2 p.m. in the George S. Eccles Business Building on the Logan campus. In 1954 not many would have predicted that a tiny company in Syracuse, which only owned a used pickup truck, would someday attract the interest of Warren Buffet. Child started with a 600-square-foot store and the business has grown to where it is now, a firm that operates 14 large stores in Utah, Idaho, Nevada and California. It has 3,000 employees and an annual sales volume of more than $800 million. Buffet wrote the forward to the Benedict’s book. “Bill Child represents the best of America,” he wrote. “In matters of family, philanthropy, business or just plain citizenship, anyone who follows in his footsteps is heading true north.” Benedict is an award-winning investigative journalist and the author of nine books. He has been a contributing writer for “Sports Illustrated,” the “Los Angeles Times” and the “Hartford Courant” His books have been the basis for features on “60 Minutes”, ABC News “20/20,” “Dateline,” HBO “Real Sports” and the Discovery Channel. In 2009 Benedict released two books: “How To Build A Business Warren Buffet Would Buy: The R.C. Willey Story” and “Little Pink House: A True Story of Defiance and Courage.” The “Little Pink House” chronicles the story behind a controversial U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on eminent domain. In 2007 Benedict published “The Mormon Way of Doing Business: How Eight Western Boys Reached the Top of Corporate America.” Benedict also wrote and co-produced a made-for-television documentary film based on the book. The Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University seeks to inspire and equip students to become innovative, ethical leaders with refined analytical skills that will help them understand and succeed in the global marketplace. The Huntsman School of Business is one of seven colleges at USU, located in the beautiful Wasatch Range of northern Utah. More information on the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business may be found at www.huntsman.usu.edu.
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