Kenneth N. Gardner & Wilma Workman Gardner

Business

Kenneth N. Gardner (1919-1988) and Wilma Workman Gardner (1924-)

Ken was born in Delta, Utah, and graduated from Delta High School in 1937, where he was commencement speaker. He attended Dixie College in 1938, and played basketball, after which he served an LDS mission to Hawaii. Upon his return he served in the United States Air Corps in World War II, and was called to active duty during the Korean conflict. Ken always affirmed that any success he had in life was a result of his pleasant and eventful year at Dixie.

Wilma was born in Delta and raised in Provo and Salt Lake City, Utah. After graduation from East HS, she worked as a Civil Service secretary to a captain in the Army. She graduated from Brigham Young University in 1982, and received the Distinguished Alumni Service Award from BYU in 1990. She has served on the Dixie State College National Advisory Council and received an honorary Doctor of Humanities degree from DSC in 1993.

Together, Ken and Wilma founded the Electrical Wholesale Supply Company. The first three units were in Idaho, which they managed until they were called to serve as leaders of the Hawaii Islands mission for the LDS Church. Upon their return they opened their first Electrical Wholesale Supply in Utah.

In 1980, Ken was honored as Utah’s Outstanding Small Businessman. There are at least six Electrical Wholesale Supply stores in Utah. Through their generous gift, the Kenneth N. Gardner Student Center on the DSC campus was made possible. Wilma states “I love Dixie and have weathered the storm of adversity through my associations with those inspired with the Spirit of Dixie and their focus on excellence.” The Gardners are the parents of five children.