Anne Cox Chambers (b. 1919)
Anne Cox Chambers is a primary owner of Cox Enterprises, a privately held media empire that includes newspapers, television, radio, cable television, and other businesses. Chambers was Georgia's highest-ranking citizen on the Forbes magazine 2005 list of the 400 wealthiest Americans. For thirty-three years she co-owned the family company with her sister, Barbara Cox Anthony, who died in May 2007. At the time of Anthony's death, she and Chambers had an estimated worth of $12.6 billion each.
Anne Cox was born on December 1, 1919, in Dayton, Ohio, to Margaretta Blair and James Middleton Cox. She attended Finch College in New York. In 1955 she married Robert William Chambers, and the couple had three children, Margaretta, Katharine, and James. In 1974, upon the death of their brother, James M. Cox (known as "Jim Jr."), Chambers and Anthony gained a controlling interest in the family company, which Jim Jr. had inherited from their father. That same year Chambers became chairwoman of Atlanta Newspapers. Anthony became chairwoman of Dayton Newspapers, while her husband, Garner Anthony, became the administrative head of Cox Enterprises. In 1988 Anthony's son James Cox Kennedy replaced his father as chairman and chief executive officer. Chambers remains a close advisor concerning the daily operation of the company.
Active in business and politics, Chambers was appointed ambassador to Belgium by U.S. president Jimmy Carter, a post she held from 1977 to 1981. She was a director of the board of the Coca-Cola Company during the 1980s, and she was the first woman in Atlanta to serve as a bank director (Fulton National Bank). She was also the first woman in Atlanta appointed to the board of the city's chamber of commerce.
Chambers currently divides her time between Atlanta and Provence, France. She is a major donor to cultural and educational institutions within Georgia as well as to national and international institutions. She serves on the boards of the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, the Atlanta Historical Society, and the Woodruff Arts Center, as well as on the boards of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Pasteur Foundation, and the Whitney Museum in New York.
In 2005 the High Museum of Art named one of the wings of its expanded facility after Chambers in honor of her lifetime of support. Her work with the High began in 1965, when she helped to establish the "Forward Arts Foundation," a fund-raising group for the museum. In the early 1980s Chambers also served as honorary chair of the fund-raising effort to construct the museum's Richard Meier complex. In October 2006 the High, in collaboration with the Louvre Museum in Paris, France, opened the exhibition "Louvre Atlanta," in a partnership facilitated by Chambers.