William Dillard II

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DEFINITION of 'William Dillard II'

The son of the founder and former chairman of Little Rock-based department store chain, Dillard's. William Dillard II joined the family business in 1968 after earning his MBA from Harvard. He became its executive vice president in 1973 and its president in 1977, holding this position until 1998. He became CEO in 1998 and chairman in 2002 when his father, Dillard Sr., passed away.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'William Dillard II'

Dillard Sr. also became experienced in retail by working in his father's store. After earning his graduate degree and working at Sears for seven months, he began his own career as an entrepreneur in 1938 with a small Nashville store. He began expanding 10 years later in Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.

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