Arkansas Business: UA receives $1M gift honoring Bill Toller

    7:16 AM, Jul 30, 2013   |    comments
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    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) -- Stocks edged lower on Monday. Several corporate deals announced Monday but none of them were able to drive big broader market gains.

    Shares of high-end retailer Saks jumped after Canadian retailer Hudson's Bay, the parent company of Lord & Taylor, agreed to buy it for $2.4 billion.

    And Omnicom Group, a major advertising firm, agreed to combine with France's Publicis Groupe to create the world's largest advertising company.

    UA receives $1M gift honoring Bill Toller

    The University of Arkansas is receiving a huge donation. The UA is receiving a $1 million gift from the family of William R. "Bill" Toller, the late chairman and CEO of Witco Chemical Company.

    The gift is from Toller's wife, Jo Ella, and children. The contribution will provide $750,000 toward a campus performing arts center the rest will establish a scholarship for the benefit of the Arkansas Alumni Association.

    Bill Toller, a 1955 graduate of the UA's Sam Walton College of Business, died in December 2011.

    Brandon Barber scheduled to change plea 

    Former northwest Arkansas developer Brandon Barber is scheduled to appear in federal court in Fort Smith on Wednesday -- and the docket indicates that he plans to change his not guilty pleas in both federal indictments pending against him.

    A co-defendant in one of the cases, Brandon Rains, is also scheduled to change his previous not guilty plea on Wednesday.

    Barber has been in the Washington County jail for more than a month after his bond was revoked for repeatedly violating the terms of his release.

    Barber, 37, was arrested in New York in March and charged with 30 counts, including bank fraud, money laundering, conspiracy to commit bankruptcy fraud, bankruptcy fraud, false statements and concealment of assets.

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