Mr. Gleason is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer and has served as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and/or President of Bank of the Ozarks since 1979. He holds a B.A. in Business and Economics from Hendrix College and a J.D. from the University of Arkansas.
Gleason took Bank of the Ozarks public in 1997, and its share price has climbed an average of 21 percent annually, three times the rate of the S&P 500 index.
Gleason heard that Carl Holt, who owned one in Ozark, a town of 3,700 an hour away, was looking to sell. Gleason, by now trustee of the family estate, put up the family farm as collateral and bought Holt’s bank in March 1979, with $10,000 in cash and a $3.6 million loan. (He would later marry Holt’s stepdaughter, Carol Ann Ross.)
In 1986, after getting divorced from Ross, with whom he has two sons, Gleason married his current wife, Linda.