Atlanta is chock full of interesting movers and shakers, some bent on creativity, empire building, activism, or just plain having fun and living the good life. Lean in to hear some of the off-the-cuff remarks about what makes Doug Hertz tick.
A native Atlantan, Hertz attended Westminster Schools and Tulane University earning a bachelor of arts and a master of business administration. He now serves as chairman and CEO of United Distributors, Inc.
He began his professional career with KPMG and in 1977 joined United Distributors, a multi-generational family business touted as the largest wholesale alcoholic beverage distributor in Georgia and Alabama.
He sits on the boards of Atlantic Capital Bank, Camp Twin Lakes, Georgia Power, Georgia Ports Authority, Holly Lane Foundation and The Marcus Foundation. He also is a past chairman of the board at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, Research Alliance, The Temple, Tulane University and The Woodruff Arts Center.
The Atlanta Business Chronicle included Hertz as one of Atlanta’s 100 most influential individuals.
Last year, Hertz won the Four Pillar Award from the Council for Quality Growth.
He was inducted into the Junior Achievement Atlanta Business Hall of Fame. Georgia Trend Magazine named him the state’s most respected business leader in 2018.
In addition, he is a limited partner in the Atlanta Falcons and chaired Atlanta’s successful bid for the 2019 Super Bowl.
The Hertzes have five “perfect” grandchildren: Zachary, Jill, Noah, Eloise and Jennings.
Find out the favorite libation of the “lord of liquor” and how he spent a most treacherous New Year’s Eve 50 feet up.
Jaffe: Best advice your father gave you?
Hertz: Surround yourself with trustworthy people who are smarter than you.
Jaffe: My most exotic vacay was …
Hertz: On safari watching cheetahs devour prey high up in tree branches.
Jaffe: If they made a movie of my life, I would choose to play the lead …
Hertz: Tom Hanks, but I don’t look like him. My wife would say Tony Danza.
Jaffe: If I had one more talent, it would be …
Hertz: Playing the saxophone, going back to my affinity for New Orleans culture.
Jaffe: Most unusual job?
Hertz: Taking inventory 50 feet up on New Year’s Eve in Baton Rouge on the top of a CITGO tank.
Jaffe: What’s your guilty pleasure?
Hertz: Blueberry muffins from the Long Cove Club in Hilton Head. They are so huge that I start by splitting, then succumb to the second half.
Jaffe: My favorite cocktail?
Hertz: A Woodford Reserve Manhattan is my “go to.” The sweetness of bourbon combines with orange peel and cherries.
Jaffe: I’m reading?
Hertz: “The Fish That Ate the Whale: The Life and Times of America’s Banana King” by Rich Cohen. Sam Zemurray lived one of the greatest untold American stories.
Jaffe: My kids say I …
Hertz: Have high expectations that they will always do the right thing. ì