LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Former chairman of Brown-Forman, Owsley Brown II has died.
Brown helped lead Brown-Forman until 2007. He also served on the boards of Riverfields, the Kentucky Center, Speed Art museum, and Actors Theatre of Louisville.
In a press release, Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said "Owsley Brown has left a legacy in our city in so many ways, from the arts to education to the business community. I've lost a dear friend and the community has lost a compassionate man of rare leadership and generosity. Owsley lifted up so many people in so many ways. His greatest legacy will be the loving and kind way he led Brown-Forman and gave back to our city. He was an exceptional human being."
U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement "Elaine and I are deeply saddened to learn of Owsley Brown's passing. I have known Owsley for over 30 years; he truly loved his hometown and showed it through his many generous philanthropic efforts. His pioneering career in business, politics and philanthropy was recognized many times, including with receipt of the Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship. Louisville lost a great friend today; he will be missed."
Metro Council member David Tandy (D-4) has released the following statement on Brown: "This is certainly a sad day for the city of Louisville. For we have lost a true business and civic leader. Carolyn and I extend our sincere thoughts and prayers to Owsley's wife, Christy, and his children, Brooke, Augusta and Owsley III."
Congressman John Yarmuth (KY-03) released the following statement about the death of Owsley Brown II: "Nobody took the responsibilities of being a citizen more seriously than Owsley Brown II. The success he achieved in building Brown-Forman into a global power is matched only by what he gave back to our community through his leadership in the arts, health care, and education. Today, we mourn the loss of our friend and one of Louisville's fiercest and most committed advocates, but we take comfort in knowing that his generous and compassionate legacy will outlive us all through his good works and the example that his children follow so admirably."
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear said in a statement: "Jane and I were deeply saddened to learn of Owsley Brown's passing. He was an unparalleled leader in business, philanthropy, and civic responsibility. Louisville and Kentucky are better places today because of his passion, vision, and gifts. He will be greatly missed, and our thoughts and prayers remain with his wife, Christy, and the Brown family."
"Elizabeth and I were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of our friend, Owsley Brown II," said Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway in a statement released to WAVE 3. "Owsley was a shining example of good corporate citizenship and worked tirelessly to improve his community and his beloved Commonwealth through his many philanthropic efforts. His stamp is on countless projects that literally and figuratively transformed the landscape of his hometown. Louisville and Kentucky have lost a dear friend - a tireless and thoughtful advocate. Our thoughts and prayers are with Christy, Owsley III, Brooke, Augusta and the entire Brown family."