Bachelor of Arts, Accounting, 1983
Executive Vice President, Hickingbotham Investments
Little Rock, Arkansas
“The professors at Ouachita sought to impact the lives of their students, not just throw information their way. They taught me that I could succeed in business while being true to my Christian faith and perspective.” –Gene Whisenhunt
Why you might know Gene Whisenhunt:
- At age 29, Gene was the vice president of finance at TCBY. At age 34, Gene was named executive vice president and CEO of the popular frozen yogurt company.
- When TCBY was sold in 2000, Gene joined founder Frank Hickingbotham in a new business venture. Today, Gene serves as executive vice president of Hickingbotham Investments, an umbrella company for 14 luxury car dealerships in Southern California, eight Harley-Davidson stores, oil, and gas companies, retail chains and restaurant supply companies.
How Ouachita faculty were influential in his life:
- Margaret Wright was one of the main reasons Gene chose to attend Ouachita. Her professionalism, preparedness and business savvy impressed him throughout his college years.
- When Gene was a senior at Ouachita, Dr. Phil Rice of Louisiana Tech recruited him for the school’s MIA program. Later, Dr. Rice served as dean of Ouachita’s Hickingbotham School of Business.
Why Gene is glad he went to Ouachita:
- Ouachita armed him with the basic business education, then went one step further by instilling within him a valuable, Christ-centered work ethic.
- The closeness of the Ouachita family and the lifelong friends Gene developed during college remain his favorite memories.