Home » Gatton College inducts Hall of Famers, Distinguished Young Alumnus

Gatton College inducts Hall of Famers, Distinguished Young Alumnus

Photo: L-R, Rex Tibbens, Simon Sheather, Pin Ni, Amanda Lillie, Anthony “Champ” Kelly. Photo, Sugar Maple Photo

LEXINGTON, Ky. — The University of Kentucky Gatton College of Business and Economics added four remarkable members to its Gatton Alumni Hall of Fame. This prestigious award recognizes Gatton alumni who have earned exceptional career and community success.

  • Amanda Lillie, Class of 1997, is the director and global head of Citigroup’s Client Infrastructure Financial Operations in New York City, NY. A strong advocate for diversity, Amanda holds leadership roles in Citigroup’s EO&T Diversity Operating Committee and the Developing Talent program. She has also mentored and volunteered at Citi throughout her career.
  • Pin Ni, Class of 1994, founded Wanxiang America Corporation. He continues to serve as the president and executive vice president of the Wanxiang Group, one of China’s largest automotive components manufacturers. Wanxiang America Corporation is one of the US’s most successful Chinese corporate investors. Ni is a board director of World Business Chicago, the China Institute and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and The Nature Conservancy Illinois Chapter. He also is a member of the Northwestern University Board of Trustees and the Advisory Board of the RAND Center for Asia Pacific Policy.
  • Rexford J. Tibbens (Rex), Class of 1995, served as president and chief executive officer of Frontdoor, a family of brands that includes American Home Shield. During his tenure, he guided Frontdoor into becoming a public company and led its digital transformation to serve a broader home services market. His leadership resulted in the company recording 16 consecutive quarters of profitable growth. Tibbens retired in 2022 to focus on board work and private investing. He has served on public and private boards, including Frontdoor, Arrival, Zipline, and Case Western Reserve University Board, where he earned an MBA in Finance.

In addition, the college presented its fourth Distinguished Young Alumni Award. The award is the highest honor bestowed on a graduate under 45 and was bestowed to Anthony “Champ” Kelley.

  • Anthony “Champ” Kelly, Class of 2003, is the assistant GM for the National Football League’s Las Vegas Raiders. Kelly is also the founder and president of the non-profit Heart Power, Inc. Kelly, a four-year UK football letterman, played professional indoor football for the Lexington Horsemen while working as a software/quality engineer at IBM from 2002-05 then Nurses Registry and Home Health. At the end of his playing career with the Lexington Horsemen, Kelly became the team’s general manager before transitioning to work with the player personnel for the Denver Broncos and Chicago Bears. He joined the Raiders in 2022.

“Our 29th class of the Alumni Hall of Fame are among the finest and most accomplished graduates of the Gatton College of Business and Economics,” said Simon Sheather, dean of the Gatton College. “As members of the Hall of Fame, these inductees join a group of outstanding individuals who have demonstrated leadership, creativity, service, and excellence in all they do.”

For more information, visit the Gatton College Alumni Hall of Fame.

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