Charles D. Tandy

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Charles David Tandy
20070429 Tarrant County Courthouse.JPG
Tarrant County Courthouse as viewed from the Northwest side. A statue of Charles David Tandy is in the foreground. (Note in 2009, the statue was moved to the Neeley School of Business, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, Texas)
Born (1918-05-15)May 15, 1918
Brownsville, Texas
Died November 4, 1978(1978-11-04) (aged 60)
Nationality American
Alma mater Texas Christian University
Occupation Businessperson
Organization Tandy Corporation
Net worth $28.4 million (at time of death)
Spouse(s) Gwen Purdy (Johnston) (?-1966)
Anne Valliant Burnett Tandy m. 1969

Dave L. Tandy (1889–1966)

Carmen McLain

Charles David Tandy (15 May 1918 – 4 November 1978) was the Chairman of the Board, President, and Chief Executive Officer of the Tandy Corporation.[1]

Early life[edit]

Charles Tandy was born in Brownsville, Texas to Dave L. Tandy, who ran the Hinckley-Tandy Leather Company with his friend Norton Hinckley. He was educated at the R. L. Paschal High School.[citation needed]


Tandy entered his father's business at the age of 12.[2] In 1940 he graduated from Texas Christian University. He then spent some time at the Harvard Business School before joining the US Navy for the remainder of World War II. While in the Navy he set a record for selling war bonds.[3] While a supply officer in the Navy, he noticed sailors being taught knitting and needlepoint as part of recuperative therapy. Thinking that men would prefer leatherwork to needlework, he established a system of craft work for hospitalized service personnel. Its success led him, on leaving the Navy, to set up a mail order business, Tandycraft, that became a major part of his father's business.[2]

Tandy developed his small family leather business into an international corporation. He first turned it into a leathercraft company when shoe rationing in World War II almost killed the business, and later expanded into selling leather and tools to make such products as wallets.[2] After a struggle over the company, which saw the Hinckley name dropped, the company was renamed to Tandy Corporation. In 1963, Tandy acquired the ailing RadioShack, a chain of nine retail stores in the Boston area;[3] the chain grew to more than 400 across the country.[2]

In Tandy's last years his major project was the revitalization of downtown Fort Worth, his hometown eg the construction of the eight‐block Tandy Center.[2]

Tandy died of a heart attack in his sleep, on 4 November 1978.[1]

Awards and recognition[edit]

  • 1976: Business Executive of the Year by Texas Wesleyan University[1]
  • 1976: Dateline Award by Fort Worth Advertising Club[4]
  • 1976: Spirit of Enterprise Award of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce[5]
  • 1976: Outstanding Chief Executive Officer of the Year in Merchandising and Services Category by Financial World[5]
  • 1991: Academy of Achievement Sales & Marketing Hall of Fame Induction by SMEI


  1. ^ a b c "Radio Shack's Charles Tandy Dead at 60". The Intelligent Machines Journal. 1: 1. 11 December 1978. ISSN 0199-6649. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Charles Tandy, 60, Industrialist". The New York Times. 1978-11-06. Retrieved 2017-09-18. 
  3. ^ a b Farman, Irvin (1992). Tandy’s Money Machine. Chicago: The Mobium Press. ISBN 0-916371-12-3. 
  4. ^ "Dateline Award Recipients" (PDF). American Advertising Federation of Fort Worth. Retrieved 2010-06-09. 
  5. ^ a b Bennison, Gail. ’A Lot of Man’ Charles Tandy left a legacy of colorful stories, grateful devotees. Fort Worth Business Press: Thanks for the Mentorees (doc). Fort Worth, TX. pp. 7–10. 

External links[edit]