(EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first article in a series spotlighting the latest initiative of long-time Knoxville Entrepreneur Tom Boyd. It has garnered a good deal of attention in the local news media.)
By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer, PYA
Tom Boyd literally beams when he talks about his latest project – a an idea named “Ancient Lore Village at Boyd Hollow” – that is part entrepreneurially-focused and partly inspired by the need for more civil discourse in this country.
For the octogenarian entrepreneur, the first aspect of the project seems a natural fit. After all, he founded Fi-Shock Inc. in 1968 and significantly grew the company that focused on animal containment systems before selling it 37 years later. A couple of weeks after the sale, Boyd was back at it, forming EDP BioTech Corporation that is focused on early detection of colon cancer, and he later founded BioPet Laboratories, an animal genomics company.
The second driver, for “Ancient Lore Village,” however, might take a minute to fully appreciate until you understand the elder Boyd’s experience in 2017 and 2018 when his son, Randy, was running for Governor.
“I was on the campaign trail for 18 months,” Boyd says, adding, “I heard nothing but dissension.” To say it sickened him would be an understatement. “I was disgusted with the dialogue,” he says with a good deal of passion.
After the election last November, Boyd says he started thinking about a “special place” unlike anyplace else on earth. Ancient Lore Village at Boyd Hollow is the product of Boyd’s vision and imagination. In a world full of turmoil, anger and distraction, he saw a place where families could focus on each other and their neighbors and experience the peace and harmony that only nature provides.
Boyd created an imaginary character named Bokee, who lived in a village – like Ancient Lore Village – where people were willing to accept strangers of different nationalities, races, beliefs and cultures. The people of Bokee’s village were focused on their families, their neighbors and the beautiful land around them. It was a breathtaking vision for Boyd.
According to Boyd, those who follow Bokee to “Ancient Lore Village at Boyd Hollow” will discover a life where goodwill, compassion, and non-confrontation are the centerpieces. Through his Boyd Hollow Resorts Inc. enterprise, Boyd is laser focused on recreating the mythical village on a 40-acre site adjacent to his South Knoxville home. It will be unlike anything this region has seen, and Boyd expects the Knox County location to be the first of as many as 15 similar villages across the south. Each will be at least 250 miles apart.
“I am from this area and I see Ancient Lore Village as my way of giving back to my hometown,” Boyd said. “We’re investing tens of millions of dollars, and we could have built this first Ancient Lore Village resort anywhere, but I wanted it here.”
So, what is planned for this site that is described on the Ancient Lore webpage as “a magical world where only good exists and people from all backgrounds, all beliefs and all nationalities come together to experience the wonders of this extraordinary, enchanted valley?”
NEXT: More details about Boyd’s vision and plans.