Bill Hanna, president, CEO and chairman of the board of Hanna Oil and Gas Company, will receive the inaugural Honorary Alumni Award from the University of Arkansas – Fort Smith’s Alumni Association. He will be honored as part of the alumni festivities for UAFS Homecoming 2019. The award will be presented Saturday, Feb. 23, at the UAFS Alumni Reunion Dinner. 

The Honorary Alumni Award was established by the Alumni Advisory Council to recognize individuals who have demonstrated their support of the university through service and/or monetary gifts. Hanna is currently a member of the UAFS Foundation Board, the G.C. Hardin Society, and the Family Enterprise Center. His relationship with UAFS students was the inspiration and foundation for the Alumni Association’s Mentor Connections program.

“I’m 54 years old, and a 54-year-old’s perspective on life is different from a 24 year-old’s,” said Hanna, who is currently serving as a mentor to UAFS student Jonathan Jones of Fort Smith and young alumna Taylor Goodson with First National Bank. “You lose sight of certain things, and you become somewhat set in your ways. But Jonathan and Taylor, they’re inquisitive and full of questions, and it makes me be that way when I’m around them.”

“One of the things I most admire about Bill is the fact that he has taken the company he inherited from his father to new heights of success as opposed to simply enjoying the fruits of someone else’s labor,” said Rick Goins, director of Alumni Affairs at UAFS.

Hanna has applied that same mindset to his work with UAFS, helping to grow university programs such as Mentor Connections and the new geosciences degree. He also served as co-chair for the Foundation’s $50 million capital campaign, which surpassed its goal by raising just under $60 million.

“All the ways Bill supports UAFS and Fort Smith truly shows that he is a Lion at heart,” Goins said.

In addition to his career with Hanna Oil and Gas and his dedication to UAFS, Hanna also serves on the boards of First Bank Corp, Fort Smith Regional Chamber of Commerce, Boys and Girls Club, the United Way, the Central Business Improvement District, and the Arkansas Colleges of Health Education, as well as being a devoted husband and father.

The Alumni Reunion Dinner will be held at the Reynolds Room of the Smith-Pendergraft Campus Center, located at 800 N. 49th St.For more information on the event honoring Mr. Hanna, contact Rick Goins at 479-788-7026 or


Jessica Martin
Date Posted: 
Monday, February 18, 2019
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