James L. “Bucky” Wolford ’69 passed away on Sept. 1, 2017, after a lengthy illness.
A longtime supporter and alumnus of The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Wolford will be remembered for his service on the University of Chattanooga Foundation Board, the UTC Athletics Board and the University of Tennessee Board of Trustees, among others.
In the early 1970s, Wolford began a career in retail development with Arlen Shopping Centers of Chattanooga. In 1978, he joined four others, including founder Charles B. Lebovitz, as principals in CBL and Associates, Inc. With Wolford as senior executive vice president, the CBL and Associates portfolio grew to some 22 million square feet of retail space at malls located mostly in the Southeast.
Wolford retired from CBL in 1997 and in 1999 formed Wolford Development, Inc., his own retail shopping center company. In October 2001, Wolford’s company opened the 376,000 square foot Oak Park Town Center in Hixson, Tennessee.
In addition, Wolford Development has property under option for major enclosed regional malls in Kalispell, Montana, Ames, Iowa and Lake Havasu City, Arizona. The centers contain such anchors as Wal-Mart, Marshall’s, Goody’s, Old Navy, Office Depot and Petco. Each of these malls will be more than 700,000 square feet with project costs at more than $300 million.
Wolford grew up in a small town in Alabama, the son of a coal miner. He was captain of his high school football team and president of the School’s National Honor Society. He received a football scholarship to UTC, was co-captain of the football team, and third team Little All-American. He graduated from UTC in the summer of 1969.
Married to Diane Kilgore in May 1969, the couple had two sons, Clint and Chad. Wolford was a past Tennessee State Director of the International Council of Shopping Centers and a past member of the Board of Trustees of Baylor School in Chattanooga. He was named to the UTC Sports Hall of Fame and UTC College of Business Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame.
Arrangements have not yet been announced.
For more details on Wolford’s life, go to http://www.gomocs.com/news/2017/9/1/football-former-uc-all-american-bucky-wolford-passes.aspx