Drayton McLane, Jr. is an American entrepreneur. He is chairman of McLane Group and chairman and CEO of the Major League Baseball's Houston Astros. In 2008 he was ranked #301 on the Forbes 400 list of richest Americans.
He was born 22 July 1936 in Cameron, Texas. His father, Drayton McLane, Sr., owned a wholesale grocery distribution center. At age nine, the young McLane went to work for his father's business that had been established by his grandfather, Robert McLane, in 1894. His grandfather came from Abbeville, S.C., to Cameron, Texas, in the late 1800s and worked as a farm laborer until about 1885, when he was able to buy and build a small retail grocery and in 1894 went into the wholesale grocery business in a small way. McLane, Jr., spent most Saturdays and summers during his teen years sweeping floors and learning various aspects of the wholesale grocery business. He graduated from C.H. Yoe High School in Cameron in 1954.
He earned his undergraduate degree at Baylor University in 1958 and his Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree in marketing at Michigan State University in 1959. After graduation, McLane, Jr., returned home and went to work for his father. For the first 18 months, he worked the second (night) shift loading trucks. Three years later he moved into management as vice president of purchasing. He then served 14 years as general manager of operations. He became president and CEO of McLane Company in 1978 and chairman in 1992.