Longtime Kentucky Lottery president Arch Gleason passes away - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Longtime Kentucky Lottery president Arch Gleason passes away

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Arch Gleason Jr. (Photo courtesy of Kentucky Lottery) Arch Gleason Jr. (Photo courtesy of Kentucky Lottery)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Longtime Kentucky Lottery president and chief executive officer Arch Gleason passed away Friday due to injuries sustained in a fall.

Gleason, 69, spent nearly 23 years leading the Kentucky Lottery, taking the helm of the organization in just its fourth year of existence. He served under five governors and was currently the longest serving lottery director in the United States.

“Arch leaves behind an amazing legacy,” said Kentucky Lottery Board Chair June Hudson. “He took such great pride in the Kentucky kids that went to college using more than $2.5 billion in scholarships and grants during his tenure. He would often relate stories of young people he met and how gratifying it was to hear how education had helped shape their future.”

“He always refused to get an unlisted home telephone number, in case a player wanted to call him with a question or concern,” Hudson recounted. “I don’t think you’d find many CEO’s of a nearly $1 billion a year company who would do that. But that was Arch.” 

Gleason had just announced his retirement from the organization less than a month ago. At the time, he spoke about how proud he was of the Kentucky Lottery.

"The Kentucky Lottery has generated billions of dollars for Kentucky education, with a record $236.1 million contribution in 2015," he said. "Over the years we’ve built one of the most successful lotteries in the country, a powerful economic engine for our state which will run for years to come."

Prior to joining the KY Lottery Corporation in September 1993, Gleason served two separate terms as director of the West Virginia Lottery. He is also a former secretary of the West Virginia Department of Transportation.

Gleason is survived by his wife of nearly 48 years, Annie, four children and seven  grandchildren.

Visitation will be 3-7 p.m. Friday at Highlands Funeral Home at 3331 Taylorsville Road. A funeral mass will be held Saturday morning at Epiphany Catholic Church at 914 Old Harrods Creek Road.

In lieu of flowers, his family asks that donations be made to Bridgehaven Mental Health Services or the University of Louisville Autism Center at Kosair Charities.

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