Jack C. Massey, international businessman, was the first person to take three companies to the New York Stock Exchange. He was head of the Winners Corporation when it secured a place on the Exchange in 1984, having previously served as chairman when Kentucky Fried Chicken Corporation and Hospital Corporation of America (HCA) were listed in 1969 and 1970, respectively.
A native of Sandersville, Georgia, Massey began his career as a pharmacist and retail druggist in Nashville. From a chain of six drugstores, he founded Massey Surgical Supply in 1930. He managed the profitable company until 1961, when he sold it to a division of the Brunswick Corporation. He retired briefly at the age of fifty-six but quickly returned to business and civic endeavors. His most important involvement came in the late 1960s with the founding and development of HCA.
A Nashville resident for more than fifty years, Massey left a living philanthropic legacy to the city. His generous contributions are most visible in the form of the Jack C. Massey Business Center on the Belmont University Campus, but he also played a role in Nashville’s cultural life as the first chairman of the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. In addition, Massey made substantial contributions to Montgomery Bell Academy, Vanderbilt University Law School, and Cheekwood.
Massey died in 1990 at his winter home in Palm Beach, Florida. Known throughout his business career for backing people, not propositions, Massey believed that wealth could not be measured fully by making money, but through accomplishments.