1963 Horatio Alger Award Winner
"Let us promote and preserve our precious heritage as an attraction far superior to gangs and vice."
John Bowles was born in Monroe, North Carolina. In his youth, he delivered newspapers, worked weekends in a drugstore, mowed lawns, and did other odd jobs. By the time he was 16 years old, he had saved enough money to finance his college education. However, the bank in which he had placed his savings failed, and he arrived at the University of North Carolina with only $45. He worked at various jobs, not only financing his education, but building up a bank account. After serving in the Navy during World War II, he joined Rexall as a stockroom clerk. With initiative, hard work, and creativity, he rose to president in six years. Bowles was cited by President Dwight Eisenhower for the Rexall registration information centers he organized to encourage Americans to vote. Vice President Richard Nixon cited him for his goodwill contribution at the 1959 International Trade Fair in Poland, where Bowles and his wife, Norma, personally unpacked, stocked, and operated a Rexall drugstore for the public.* Deceased