The late Billie R. Nix bought the Ash Flat Livestock Auction in 1960 and until his death in 2010, worked tirelessly to improve the cattle industry in Arkansas. Nix was owner and president of the auction for more than 50 years and made the Ash Flat Livestock Auction Company the most successful business in the city and one of the most successful cattle auctions in Arkansas and the south. Its success continues to generate substantial revenue for the community. It’s estimated that 1.5 million head of livestock were sold through the facility which is still operated by his family. He was past president of the Sharp County Fair Board and manager of the fair, an organizer of the North Central Arkansas District Fair, past vice president of the Arkansas Livestock Marketing Association and longtime officer with the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association. Nix believed strongly in the value of an education for the betterment of the individual and community. He encouraged his children to attend college by selling a calf and putting the proceeds into their college fund each year. In recognition of Billie and Alice Nix’s lifelong commitment to agriculture and others, their children established the Bill and Alice Nix Petting Zoo on the campus farm at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. ASU President Dr. Charles Welch called the petting zoo a “key component of the College of Agriculture’s efforts to provide more opportunities for the public to visit the campus and learn about agriculture.” Nix was a compassionate man who was known for his generosity, and helping those in need. Adam McClung, executive vice president of the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association, said Nix’s contributions to the Arkansas cattle industry and economy of north-central Arkansas are “immeasurable.” Nix also served on a number of other boards and associations including, Main Street Ash Flat, the Fulton County Water Association, Tri-County Cattlemen’s Association, Spring River Area Chamber of Commerce and Sharp County Extension Council.