Thomas Pyle, who received his MBA in 1963, is chairman of The Pyle Group and the former CEO and principal owner of the Rayovac Corporation. He began his career with management positions at Bristol-Myers and Procter & Gamble, and then became president of the Butterick Fashion Marketing Company, a home sewing supplier.
Although Rayovac was struggling when acquired, Pyle has been credited with returning the company to profitability and substantially expanding its sales. In 1996, he formed The Pyle Group, a Madison-based financial services and investment company.
Tom Pyle and his wife, Judith, gave $2 million for the Pyle Center, the university’s newly remodeled home for distance education. The Pyles have also endowed a named professorship at the School of Business, as well as supporting the School of Human Ecology, the Athletic Department and many other initiatives.
A member of the Bascom Hill Society, Pyle has served on the UW Foundation. He also serves on the board of trustees for the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation and the University Research Park, and is a past WAA board member and past chair of the UW School of Business board of visitors.