Remembering Charlie Merrill


Joseph Charles “Charlie” Merrill served as an inspiring leader in the Arlington, Texas business community for several decades. After moving to Arlington from Nashville, Tennessee in 1958 with his wife, Sandra, he quickly became an integral part of the community serving and inspiring those around him.

In the early 1960s, he would join the board of the YMCA to help the organization achieve financial stability. He is now in the Arlington YMCA Hall of Fame and was awarded the YMCA’s Man of the Year.

Charlie Merrill continued on to serve as the Chair of the Arlington Chamber Board of Directors in 1985-86. He served as a progressive figure in Arlington’s history.  Charlie encouraged women in business by working to establish the Women’s Division at the Arlington Chamber of Commerce. He would set the stage for his daughter, Sarah Merrill Young, who would become the leader of the family business and continue to demonstrate servant leadership in the local community.

Under his leadership, Merrill Financial Group was selected as Arlington’s Small Business of the Year in 2001. The Arlington Chamber would honor him with induction into the Arlington Business Hall of Fame in 2014 for continuous work to build a sustainable future for Arlington. Part of the Tom Vandergriff generation of business leaders, he put would elevate Arlington, the American dream city, to national visibility.

Despite his many awards and accolades, Charlie is remembered most by his sincerity and kindness. He was a genuine friend to those around him and made everybody feel like a somebody.

“Charlie Merrill’s leadership helped shape who we were, who we are and what we aspire to be. We will miss him, but his legacy will live on for generations.” - Michael Jacobson, Chamber President & CEO