The Massey Group thanks Haslam family in full page newspaper ad.
After weeks of negative news about Pilot Flying J and a federal investigation into the company, there's a positive story about the family behind the company.
On April 15, 2013, FBI and IRS agents raided Pilot's West Knoxville headquarters. FBI affidavits released a few days later claimed Pilot defrauded trucking companies in a rebate scheme.
Weeks after that raid, another East Tennessee company is showing public support for Pilot Flying J CEO, Jimmy Haslam, and his family. The Massey Group is taking out a full page advertisement in Sunday's Knoxville News Sentinel thanking the Haslams. The Massey Group said the ad is not in response to the federal investigation into Pilot. "If this city ever had a family that we owe appreciation to it's the Haslams," Randy Massey of The Massey Group said.
The ad says in part, "Thank you to the Halsam family for the many years of support for Knoxville and East Tennessee...Please know that you have the appreciation of the community to which you have contributed so much."
Massey said the point of the ad is simply to show the Haslam's appreciation for their help shaping our community. "If you look at the great families that have made this a great community, we have a lot of things that communities our size don't have, and a great deal of that is due to the Haslams," Massey said. "And I said on Mother's Day I think I would like to put ad in that just said to the Haslam's 'Thank you very much. How can we thank you enough for what you've done to our community?'"
The ad also lists companies and individuals who support the Haslam family. That list includes Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero. 10News asked her about the investigation into Pilot Flying J after she presented the city's budget on April 26. She said, "I hope that the investigations don't drag on and things get worked out soon so that the family can go back to doing what they do best and that's just caring about Knoxville."
Other big names on the ad include Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett, Clayton Homes, Covenant Health and DeRoyal. Also on the list is WBIR general manager Jeff Lee and his wife, Christy.