Founder of Carlisle Corporation, Gene Carlisle, owned and operated over 135 Wendy’s restaurants throughout Mississippi, Arkansas, Louisiana, Virginia, Alabama and North Carolina employing more than 4,000 people and topping $190 million in sales.
By 1982, Carlisle founded Carlisle Corporation, which became the parent holding company for its subsidiaries Carlisle Properties, Carlisle Hotels, Inc., Carlisle Media, Wenstar and Wendelta, Inc. At that time, Carlisle Corporation owned and operated 12 Wendy’s Old Fashioned Hamburger Restaurants, 4 Holiday Inns and 2500 Apartments.
In 2004, Carlisle received the Founder’s Award from Wendy’s International. This award is given to the franchisee who embodies the values of its founder, Dave Thomas has excellent operations, a strong marketing plan and an organization committed to employee development and community involvement. In 2004, Carlisle also received the prestigious Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the Southeast Region. Gene Carlisle was inducted into the Mississippi Business Hall of Fame in 2002.
Gene Carlisle was also very involved with the University of Southern Mississippi having served on the Foundation’s Board of Directors, Board of Director on the Athletic Foundation and as Chairman of the College of Business Advisory Council. He also was selected as the College of Business’ Outstanding Alumni of the Year and inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame.
“The world is in a constant state of change as is the pace at which we change. Entrepreneurial development of technology has increased the pace of change to mach speed. While the societies of the world adapt to these changes, each at their own pace, the entrepreneur creates the change and the necessity to change. He understands that the greatest risk is to take no risk (seek the status quo). He is here to make a difference, to make the world a different, better place.
“The leader of the world will always be the country that has the greatest entrepreneurial spirit and talent.”
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