Did you know anything about him? A nice little bio summary here, with an interesting focus on his business history.

He has 8 kids!

Barron Hilton (born 1927), son of the founder of Hilton Hotels, became head of the company in 1966. Disparaged by some as the lucky son of Conrad Hilton, he led the company into the gaming industry and was one of the first in the hotel industry to use management leaseback deals.

An avid poker player, he was denied a gaming license in Atlantic City by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission in 1985, when alleged ties to organized crime were discovered. In 1998, Hilton received the honorary title of Knight Commander of St. Gregory the Great, a Catholic honor. He and his wife are generous donors to Catholic causes. [The gambling and the mafia and the Catholic church – it goes so nicely together!! too funny]

In the late 1990s, Hilton Hotels was the third-largest lodging company in the world.

On the list of the 400 Richest People in America, hotelier William Barron Hilton came in last, with a fortune of $500 million.

When his father died in 1979, he left Hilton several hundred thousand dollars in cash. The bulk of his fortune, almost 13.5 million shares of Hilton Hotels stock, went to the Conrad Hilton Foundation to help Roman Catholic nuns worldwide. Hilton controlled another 3.4 percent of the 25 million shares. He claimed his father’s will gave him the option to buy the stake from the foundation at the 1979 price of $24 a share, a total of $330 million less than the 1988 market price. A California superior court ruled against Hilton in 1986. The settlement, reached in November of 1989, gave four million shares to Hilton outright, 3.5 million shares to the foundation, and six million shares to a trust, with Hilton serving as executor. He was allowed to keep 60 percent of any dividends paid on the trust’s shares for the next 20 years. After the year 2008, those payments and ownership of the shares revert to the foundation. The settlement meant that Hilton could vote the foundation’s shares, giving him control of over 25 percent of the outstanding stock in the company. In April 1998, the Securities and Exchange Commission approved the sale of as many as 24 million Hilton shares from the charitable trust he controls.

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