Longtime Little Rock businessman and community leader Sherman Tate will receive the Legacy of Leadership Award at the 34th annual Arkansas Business of the Year ceremony March 9.
Tate, who rose to high positions at Arkla Gas, Alltel and Verizon before founding the consulting firm Tate & Associates Management, is the fourth recipient of the award. He joins J.B. Hunt co-founder Johnelle Hunt (2020), former Simmons Bank executive Tommy May (2019) and KFC franchisee and banker Wallace Fowler (2020).
Tate was inducted into the University of Arkansas Business Hall of Fame in 2017. Over the years, he has also held roles in the upper levels of state government. He was personnel director of the state Legislative Council, as well as the council's first African American employee. He also led the Office of Personnel Management, another first for an African American in the state.
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Tate, a U.S. Army veteran, is a former president of the greater Little Rock chapter of 100 Black Men, a national group aimed at improving the quality of life for African Americans and other minorities, with an emphasis on youth development.
He's the current chairman of the board of the Urban League of Arkansas.
"Sherman Tate has lived a life of significant impact from which our state will benefit for generations," Arkansas Business Publisher Mitch Bettis said. "As a business leader, non-profit leader and community leader, he has with strength, vision, determination and character blazed a trail of success. It's an honor to recognize him for a lifetime of exceptional success which has helped Arkansas be a better place to live and do business."
Arkansas Business will honor Tate and the Arkansas Business of the Year finalists at an awards ceremony with live and virtual audiences March 9 from 7-9 p.m. at the DoubleTree Hotel in Little Rock.
Finalists and winners were selected by an outside panel of judges made up of previous award winners. Arkansas Business of the Year awards will be distributed in five categories, along with awards for Business Executive of the Year, Nonprofit Organization and Nonprofit Executive of the Year.