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William G. McGowan

Home 5 Who We Are 5 William G. McGowan

William G. McGowan (1927-1992) was a pioneering entrepreneur. During his 24 years as the head—and very public face—of MCI, McGowan expanded the company from a struggling local radio service to a $9.5 billion telecommunications giant. Along the way, he took on the world’s largest corporation—Ma Bell, a well-protected, century-old monopoly with 1.4 million employees. In large part due to McGowan’s dogged and successful antitrust litigation, a regulated telecommunications industry that was virtually an institution opened up and became a competitive marketplace thriving on new ideas, technologies, and companies.

A man born of modest means, William McGowan achieved remarkable success. He recognized, though, that with his success came great responsibility and was committed to providing others hope through opportunity. He believed in the power of education and the urgency of community need. He died in 1992 after a six-year battle with heart disease that included two heart attacks and a heart transplant. Soon after William McGowan’s death, the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund was established to provide financial support to organizations that reflect the visions, concerns, and life experiences of its benefactor, and have proven success in changing and improving societal conditions.

The Maverick’s Legacy

Will Bill McGowan in mind, the Fund focuses on education, healthcare, and human services in its giving.