GETTING PERSONAL: …with Randy Acton

Q. What was your first job out of college?

A. I was a U.S. Army officer; after the service, I was the marketing director at Fort Knox (KY) Federal Credit Union.

Q. What college did you attend?

A. Oklahoma State University, where I received a B.S. in marketing.

Q. Are you married?

A. Yes; my wife and I have been married for 36 years, and we have two children, ages 27 and 29.

Q. How did you get into the catalog business?

A. We first opened U.S. Cavalry as a store. We received so many inquiries that we put out a clipboard requesting customers’ names and addresses. We mailed our first catalog a year later, in October 1975. We printed 1,800 copies.

Q. What’s your greatest achievement in catalog marketing?

A. Receiving the regional 1992 Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

Q. What was your most embarrassing moment on the job?

A. As a challenge to our employees to meet our goal of donating $5,000 to the United Way, I dressed up in a pink bunny suit for the day. We met our goal, and now that picture of me hangs in our offices.

Q. Which catalog company do you most admire and why?

A. I like Wild Wings, which is a catalog of gifts, apparel, and collectibles dedicated to wildlife. The catalog has the most interesting mix of products and displays. I love shopping from specialty catalogs. My wife says I have a unique eye for finding just the right merchandise.

Q. Other than, perhaps, your current job, what would be your dream job?

A. It would probably be a tour guide because I love to travel. Although I’ve yet to visit it, China is the destination I’d most like to travel to.

Q. What are the best books you’ve ever read?

The Bible, and The Roaring 2000s: Building the Wealth and Lifestyle You Desire in the Greatest Boom in History, by Harry S. Dent. Jr.

Q. Who is your favorite musical artist?

A. The Carpenters.

Q. If you could trade places with someone for a day, who would you be?

A. Bill Gates.

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