The Summit Country Day School awarded its highest alumni honor this week to C. Bert Amann Jr., a retired Cincinnati entrepreneur.
The McKenzie-Sargent Distinguished Alumni Award is named in memory of Anna McKenzie and Olive Sargent, who in 1893 became the first graduates at The Summit. The award recognizes alumni from The Summit’s Upper School or former Boys School for their career and community service achievements as well as service to The Summit. Amann was given the award at The Summit’s Leaders of Character Society reception Sept. 5 in Devou Park.
Amann, who attended The Summit before the Upper School became co-educational, is a 1945 graduate of The Summit Boys School. He graduated from Brown University in 1953 and received a Master’s in Business Administration from Columbia University in 1955.
After graduate school, he began working with Colonial Stores, a regional grocery chain. Promotions that took him to Atlanta and Jacksonville gave him exposure to 7Eleven stores in the south. With help from his father, who was also in the grocery store business, and his father’s friend, inventor, industrialist and entrepreneur Powell Crosley, he sold stock to local investors and began King Kwik, the first convenience store chain in Cincinnati. Innovative advertising, as well as the sale of cold beer and gasoline, helped the business grow to 165 stores in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana before Amann and his investors sold the chain to Sunoco’s Stop and Go in the mid-1980s. Amann retired to Clearwater, Fla., where he lives with his wife Madge.
The Amann family has longstanding connections to The Summit. Amann’s father graduated from The Summit’s eighth grade in 1913. His mother was a 1920 graduate of The Summit’s Upper School. He sent five children to The Summit and a granddaughter is a current sophomore, making the Amanns a four-generation Summit family.
Amann served on The Summit’s Board of Trustees from 1979 to 1984 and has been a continual benefactor over the years. He endowed the C. Bert Amann, Jr. SBS '45 Family Fund in 2003.
“He is a believer in what we do,” said Head of School Rich Wilson. “He invested his time, his considerable talent, his treasure and his kids with us. He’s an innovator and entrepreneur par excellence. He’s truly a distinguished alum of our school and deserving of the McKenzie-Sargent honor.”
The Summit Country Day School is an independent, Catholic, co-educational school providing a rigorous, character-based curriculum for students from 18 months through grade 12. The school’s mission is to develop leaders of character who can make the world a better place. Learn more at www.summitcds.org.