After Alltel, Sharilyn Gasaway Didn't Have to Look Far To Land at J.B. Hunt

Arkansas Business 20th Annual 40 Under Forty
The original Class of 2007 profiles
2013 Updates from this week's digital edition of Arkansas Business.

Sharilyn Gasaway is a veteran board member, but never bored.

A member of the Arkansas Business 40 Under 40 Class of 2007, Gasaway currently serves on the boards of J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Genesis Energy LP of Houston and Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. of Overland Park, Kan. Throw in her service on the Arkansas Children’s Hospital board and Gasaway finds herself with plenty to do.

“No more,” she said. “I’m kind of tapped out.”

A graduate of Louisiana Tech, Gasaway worked eight years as an auditor with Arthur Anderson LLP, where she became familiar with Alltel, the Little Rock-based telecommunications company.

She joined Alltel in 1999 and became corporate controller in 2002 and CFO in 2006, making her Alltel’s highest-ranking female executive, and she was there until 2009. Gasaway helped with Alltel’s growth spurt that saw it split into two public companies, as offshoot Windstream came into being.

Then J.B. Hunt came calling.

“Somebody just called me and asked if I’d be interested,” Gasaway, 44, said. “And of course I’d be interested because it would allow me to work and stay in the business world and also spend more time with my kids.”

The mother of 12-year-old twin girls, Gasaway is a member of J.B. Hunt’s audit committee and the nominating and corporate governance committee. She chairs the audit committee at Genesis and is on the audit, investment and nominating and corporate governance committees at Waddell & Reed, a mutual fund company.

Auditing may be a common theme in her work, but Gasaway said she has to stay on her toes thanks to her board memberships in three distinct industries.

“It does take a lot of time,” said Gasaway, who was elected to the Arkansas Children’s board last year and also serves on the Louisiana Tech College of Business Advisory Board.

While there is some travel, Gasaway said, the corporate board meetings only come in a cluster every quarter, allowing her time at home. And her schedule has made her tolerant of the needs of others.

“I really like it,” Gasaway said. “I try to be thoughtful of people and their time.”