Gary Hoover is the rare combination of a business scholar and practitioner. He began the learning side by studying businesses large and small at the age of 12, and later studying under four Nobel Prize-winning economists at the University of Chicago, including Milton Friedman. His practical side led him to be a stock analyst on Wall Street and then a retail executive at Fortune 500 companies until he and his colleagues started his first company in Austin, Texas in 1982. That was BOOKSTOP, the first chain of giant book superstores, later purchased by industry leader Barnes & Noble. Then he went on to co-found the company that evolved into Hoovers.com, one of the world’s leading company information websites. Hoover’s went public in 1999 and is now owned by Dun & Bradstreet.
In 2009 he became the first Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the highly-ranked McCombs Business School of the University of Texas at Austin, a role he now serves in the same University’s graduate School of Information. He mentors entrepreneurs and speaks to student and corporate and government leaders worldwide. Gary serves on the boards of the Flatonia Chamber of Commerce, the Flatonia Economic Development Corporation, and the Fayette County Tourism Association. In 2019, he and his friends launched a new non-profit organization, The American Business History Center, to promote awareness of the lessons of history.
Gary has also been a lifelong booklover and self-described “Information Junkie.” He serves on the Advisory Council of the School of Information at the University of Texas at Austin. He blogs at Hooversworld.com and writes articles published across the Internet. His most recent book is The Lifetime Learner’s Guide to Reading and Learning. He lives in Flatonia, Texas, in his 57,000-book personal reference library.