Liquor Magnate Dies In Kentucky

Brown-Forman Corp. says its former chairman and CEO, Owsley Brown II, who helped make the company’s brands a staple in liquor stores and restaurants around the world, died late Monday after a brief illness. He was 69.

Brown was a descendant of the Louisville company’s founder. He started his Brown-Forman career in 1968, rose to CEO in 1993 and added the title of chairman two years later.

When he took over as CEO, less than one-fourth of the company’s net sales came from outside the U.S. By the time he stepped down in 2005, nearly half of Brown-Forman’s revenues came from international markets.

The company’s brands include Jack Daniel’s and Southern Comfort.

Brown was also a prominent philanthropist and preservationist.

He is survived by his wife, Christy, three children and nine grandchildren.