The OneJax Institute in Jacksonville, Florida, honored Robert ’83 and Margaret Hill ’83 with their humanitarian award on April 15. OneJax is a nonprofit interfaith organization dedicated to achieving civility, understanding and respect for all people and promoting diversity as the foundation for a strong community.
Robert Hill began his career as president of Siler Brokerage, a Knoxville, Tennessee-based family business, and managed sales and marketing for numerous consumer packaged goods companies when Acosta, Inc. acquired Siler in 1994. He then became president and chief operating officer of Acosta in 2004 and CEO in 2009 and vice chairman in September 2016.
During his tenure, Robert led Acosta in meeting the sales and marketing objectives for more than 1,000 consumer packaged goods companies across North America and the acquisition and integration of 50 agencies to increase Acosta’s size, scale and service offerings. He earned a degree in economics and business at Furman and has served on the Board of Trustees since 2009.
In addition to his service on the Furman board, Robert was a trustee for Jacksonville University, chaired the board of Baptist Healthcare System and JAXUSA Partnership of the Jacksonville Chamber, and was a board member of Baptist Medical Center and Big Brother/Big Sisters of North Florida. He is a member of the United Way of Northeast Florida Board of Trustees and chaired their 2017 fund raising campaign. He also serves on The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida Board of Trustees and chairs the Investment Committee.
Margaret, who graduated Furman magna cum laude with a degree in English, is a former editor with Mercer University Press. She has chaired the diaconate at Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church and was a member of the board of Learn to Read in Duval County. She served on boards for WJCT, a public radio and television station, and Speaking of Women’s Health. She volunteered and was a member of the advisory board of Hill Breast Center at Baptist Medical Center and dedicated two days each week to volunteering at the Breast Center. She was also a volunteer for local public schools.
The Hills have a tradition of service and generosity to Furman, and both are co-chairs of the current Furman campaign, past chairs of the Richard Furman Society Executive Committee and past members of the Because Furman Matters Campaign Executive Committee. The Hill Atrium and Hill Courtyard of the Trone Student Center bear their names, as does a laboratory in the Townes Center for Science. They also support the Partners Scholarship Program and the Cothran Center for Vocational Reflection.
The Hills are the parents of Marshall Hill ’12 and Katherine (University of North Carolina ’15).