New Orleans native Bill Hammack has been involved for many years in various businesses, with both local and national scope. Professionally trained as journalist, after a short career working as a newspaper reporter and editor, he decided that his future was as an entrepreneur and subsequently built several successful ventures in printing, graphic arts, publishing, internet technology, hospitality, and construction.
Among them were the SunShine Pages, one of the country’s most successful independent telephone directory publishers with offices in six states; YPsolutions, an Internet software company providing services to Fortune 500 companies, and Turbo Trip, an online hotel reservation company that was acquired by Hotels.com. For five years he owned NewOrleans.com, the url, which operated an online travel agency. NewOrleans.com was acquired by New Orleans & Co., the city’s convention and visitor’s bureau.
Hammack spent two years as Vice President of Business Development and Strategy for publicly traded R.H. Donnelley (later Dex One Corporation) where he was a member of the executive committee, managed the introduction of Internet sales and participated in the company’s acquisition strategy culminating in more than $11.5 billion in transactions. At the end of Hammack’s tenure RHD had 4,000 employees and revenues of $4 billion.
In 2004 he was presented a lifetime achievement award for his contributions to the directory industry by the Association of Directory Publishers.
For 23 years Hammack has been a partner with celebrity chef Donald Link in the Link Restaurant Group. LRG owns and operates Herbsaint, Cochon, Peche, Gianna, Butcher, Calcasieu and La Boulangerie, all in located in New Orleans. Additionally, he is a partner and investor in several other local businesses ranging from hospitality to construction.
Hammack is a Founding Member of the World War II Museum, has served on various nonprofit and community organization boards, including Clover and Educare. He is also a founder and member of the board of the Link Stryjewski Foundation, created to address the persistent cycle of violence and poverty as well as the lack of quality education and job training opportunities available to young people in New Orleans.
Hammack currently serves as the Treasurer of the New Orleans Business Council. Business Council of New Orleans and the River Region (bcno.org)
His commitment to early childhood education has been recognized by several awards including:
- Force for Good Leadership Award by Louisiana Association of Non-Profits
- Founders Award from the Louisiana Institute for Children and Families
- Young Leadership Council Role Model
- Child Welfare League of America “100 Champions for Children”
- Community Impact Funding Partner from United Way