William Barron Hilton I
(born October 23, 1927) is an American socialite, heir, and hotelier and was co-chairman of the Hilton Hotels chain, and the original owner of
the San Diego Chargers.
is the paternal grandfather of Paris
, and Conrad Hilton
Hilton was born in Dallas, Texas, the second
son of Conrad Nicholson Hilton and
Mary Adelaide Barron.
His father founded Hilton Hotels. His
brothers are Eric Hilton and the late Conrad Nicholson Hilton, Jr.
"Nicky," who was actress Elizabeth
's first husband (1950). He also has a younger
half-sister (b. 1947), Francesca
, whose mother is Zsa Zsa
active for several years in organizing and managing businesses in
Angeles, and was also a member of the board of directors of
the Statler Hotels Delaware Corporation and of the Conrad N.
20, 1947 he was married at St. Vincent de Paul Church, Chicago, Illinois to Marilyn
June Hawley (Los
Angeles, California, February 11, 1928 – Los Angeles, California, March 11, 2004), daughter of George Hawley and
Barron and Marilyn were the parents of
William Barron Hilton, Jr. (born 1948); Hawley Anne Hilton (born
1949); Stephen Michael Hilton (born 1950); David Alan Hilton (born
1952); Sharon Constance Hilton (born 1953); Rick Hilton
(born 1955); Daniel Kevin Hilton
(born 1962); and Ronald Jeffrey Hilton (born 1963). Baron and
Marilyn remained married until her death in 2004.
In 1954, he was elected a vice-president of Hilton Hotels
Corporation, of which his father was president. The announcement
was made on November 16, 1954, by Robert P. Williford, Executive
Vice President. Barron also became president of the Carte Blanche credit card
firm, was owner of a $6,000,000
company, head of a
business leasing jets
and an investor
in a Texas oil company.
In 1960, Barron founded the Los
Angeles Chargers Professional
team of the new American Football League
. He moved
his team to San Diego for the 1961 season. The team played in the
first two American Football League championships, losing both to
the Houston Oilers
. They defeated the
for the 1963 AFL
Barron Hilton assumed the presidency of the Hilton Hotel chain in
1966. In 1970, he was responsible for getting Hilton Hotels into
When Barron's father died in 1979, he left the bulk of his estate
to the Roman Catholic Church
, and almost
nothing to his children. Barron contested the will because of his
lifelong career of working to build the hotel company and won his
lawsuit in 1988. His half-sister, Francesca, lost her case and
received nothing. In 1986, Hilton was awarded an honorary
doctoral degree from the University of Houston.
In the Forbes 400, which lists the 400 richest Americans, Barron
Hilton's worth in 2007 is listed at $2.3 billion.
On December 25, 2007, Hilton announced that he will be diverting
approximately 97 percent of his fortune to a charitable trust that
will eventually be merged with the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation
, who profiled
the Hilton family in House of Hilton
(2006), has said
Barron Hilton is embarrassed by his granddaughter Paris
' behavior and believes it has sullied the
family name. There was no response from her.
Barron Hilton owns a house on Venice Island in the Sacramento-San
Joaquin Delta near Stockton, CA. Every year he has put on a large
fireworks display which always attracts thousands of boaters.
owns the Flying-M Ranch, which is
where on Labor Day, 2007 adventurer Steve Fossett took off from and never returned.
in the Navy in Hawaii during
World War II as a photographer.
Hawaii, he became fascinated by aviation and at nineteen
attended University of Southern
California Aeronautical School, where he earned his twin-engine rating.
- Ancestry of Paris Hilton
- #195 William Hilton - Forbes.com
- BBC NEWS | Business | Hilton fortune to go to