Alabama Academy of Honor

Harry B. Brock, Jr.

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 1983 and 2002.

Harry B. Brock, Jr., banker, was born March 31, 1925 in Fort Payne. He moved at an early age to Gadsden, and he graduated from the Tennessee Military Institute.

He served with the U.S. Navy Submarine Service, 1944-46. After leaving the Navy, he enrolled at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, where he earned the B.S. degree in Commerce and Business Administration in 1949. Upon graduation, he returned to Gadsden and was associated with the Brook-Martin Oil Company, as a truck driver. He was also a car salesman with the John Thomas Motors of Gadsden.

In 1955, he joined the Exchange Security Bank, Birmingham, as a Management Trainee in the Business Development Department and was the Executive Vice President when he left the bank in 1964. In the meantime he graduated from the School of Financial Public Relations, Northwestern University, 1957, and earned a Graduate Certificate from the American Institute of Banking in 1964.

In 1964, he left the Exchange Security Bank to become co-founder of Central Bank and Trust Company, Birmingham. He spearheaded the Multi-Bank Holding Company concept in Alabama in 1971. He brought Central Bank and State National Bank of Alabama together to form a registered bank holding company, Central and State National Corporation of Alabama. As more banks joined the Central family, the name changed to Central Bancshares of the South Inc. Working with the Alabama Legislature, he was instrumental in the passage of the Statewide Bank Merger Bill of 1980 allowing bank branching across county lines. He took the lead and merged eleven of the affiliated banks across Alabama with assets of $2.4 billion.

He served as a director of numerous organizations: Marathon Industries; Central Bancshares of the South, Inc.; Central Bank of the South; Daniel International Corporation; Jefferson County Community Chest; the Jefferson County Society for Crippled Children or Adults, and the Alabama Alliance of Business and Industry.

He was a Trustee of several organizations: Diabetes Trust Fund, Samford University, Southern Research Institute and the Gorgas Scholarship Foundation.

He is listed in Who's Who in America and Who's Who in American History.

He married Jane Hollock on October 29, 1949, and they have three children: Stanley M.; Barrett; and Harry B. III.

Inducted in Alabama Business Hall of Fame in 1993.

Awarded honarary Doctorate of Commerce by Samford University in 1994.

Mr. Brock passed away on July 29, 2015