Billy D. Benton, a successful and well-known veteran in the furniture industry, died March 13 at his home in Greensboro, North Carolina. He was 71.
Benton began his career as a warehouse team member at Levitz Furniture in Phoenix. He quickly climbed the ranks and spent more than 30 years in senior management posts at Levitz Furniture and Roberds. He then formed an importing firm, Avalon Professional Worldwide, and served as president.
He continued his career as the president and CEO of Powell Co. and then went on to become the president of CR International, a sourcing division of Chromcraft Revington Inc. He was a founding partner of Folio-21 Furniture, which was eventually sold to HT Hackney. Later in his career, he headed up South Seas Rattan Furniture.
Aside from his impressive career, Benton was known for his distinctive sayings. Many will remember him using phrases such as “all hat, no cattle” or “reports cause analysis paralysis.”
Throughout his career in the furniture industry, Benton made many close friends and never met a stranger. He had a way of making people feel at ease and always had a kind word to say. He was known for his charisma, sense of humor and his ability to make anyone feel like they were an important team member or customer. Benton was impeccably dressed and carried himself with a striking presence. At well over 6 feet tall, he was a commanding figure in any room he entered.
Benton is survived by his daughters, Lindsay Benton, Katie Benton (Danny) and Jami Pool (Jeff); two granddaughters, Ella and Ashley; and his ex-wife, Connie Post, with whom he remained close.
His dedication, hard work and warm personality will be deeply missed by those who knew him. Benton’s legacy in the furniture industry will live on for years to come.
Plans for services are pending. Details can be found at Hanes Lineberry Funeral Home website.