Junior Achievement announced Tuesday it will induct three Knoxville area businessmen into the East Tennessee Business Hall of Fame on April 11th in a ceremony at the Knoxville Convention Center.
They are Joseph Hollingsworth Jr., owner and CEO of the Hollingsworth Companies; Steve West, chairman of West Chevrolet Inc. and West Properties Llc; and the late Jim Shelby, a longtime business and financial adviser who died last July.
Presenting sponsors of this year’s induction ceremony are Pilot Travel Centers and the Greater Knoxville Business Journal.
Pilot Travel Centers has invested a truckload of money in recent years building a reputation for serving premium coffee. Now, the Knoxville based company is spending another bunch of cash to upgrade the coffee bars at its recently acquired Flying J locations.
The company is spending approximately $150,000 per location on new coffee/deli bars at the Flying J travel centers.
“In the last 18 months we made a commitment to being a coffee authority,” said Whitman Harson, manager of hot beverages for Pilot Flying J. “Drivers know what we deliver they an trust. They know it’s going to be a great cup of coffee.”
It looks like Knoxville-based Pilot Travel Centers’ take-over of the Flying J truck stop chain is close to happening.
The Salt Lake Tribune reports that Flying J could come out of bankruptcy by the end of July. Also, Flying J CEO Crystal Call Maggelet told the Tribune the merger with Pilot is “in the last stages of [Federal Trade Commission] approval.”
It’s been nearly a year since Pilot and Ogden, Utah-based Flying J announced plans to merge. When the deal finally happens it will make Pilot, which is already a major player in the national travel center busines, THE major player with 550 or more locations in North America.