Born into a hard-working family, Clay is an Ohio native who worked as an assistant purchasing agent for the Campbell Soup Company. He joined Iams in the 1970s where he went on to become CEO, owner and Chairman of the Board over the following few decades. In 1999, the Mathile family sold Iams to international conglomerate Procter & Gamble.
Clay's passion for teaching and his belief that no child should suffer from the lack of quality food, inspired him to develop The Mathile Institute. Clay's idea was fueled by the notion that the expertise, energy and dedication he and his team put toward creating world-class quality pet food, could be redirected to finding sustainable, practical and evidence-based solutions to help children and families around the world.
Clay’s long-time friendship with Nobel Laureate and father of the Green Revolution, Dr. Norman Borlaug reinforced he urgency with which to look at combating hunger and malnutrition in a new way. As such, The Mathile Institute is committed to exploring nutrition interventions through different, yet culturally-relevant approaches that would build upon and strengthen existing food and nutrition insights.
Clay’s ultimate vision for The Mathile Institute is that its outputs help the human condition by reducing suffering, improving quality of life, and empowering people to reach their full potential.
Still active in several business ventures, Clay devotes most of his time to philanthropic interests. In addition to The Mathile Institute, Clay is involved in the following ventures:
- Founder and Chairman of the Board of Aileron, a Dayton-based non-profit organization created to strengthen communities by helping business owners lead and manage their companies, driving growth, innovation and jobs.
- The Mathile Family Foundation: Since 1989, the Foundation has granted more than $230 million to nonprofit organizations that help Dayton area children and their families.
- The Glen at St. Joseph: This life-changing campus for 36 single-moms and their young children is a realization of a longtime dream of Clay’s wife, MaryAnn Mathile. The Glen offers mothers the opportunity to pursue their educational and career goals while their children attend a state-of-the-art early learning center on campus.
Clay also serves as a Trustee on a select group of nonprofit boards focused on education, medical innovation, and social justice. Clay and MaryAnn, live in Dayton, Ohio. Clay insists his most important roles are that of husband, father of five, and grandfather of 15.