What are your goals as BOV chair?
The institution and the BOV have been incredibly successful. Accordingly, it is important to continue our successful BOV model and do all we can to support MD Anderson through our philanthropic support and advice. The role of our BOV is advisory in nature. It is important to look for opportunities to make our BOV even more relevant in helping Dr. DePinho and his team meet the challenges of cancer and take advantage of opportunities to maintain our position as the No. 1 institution for cancer research and patient care.
What was one of your best career moves?
Moving to Phillips Petroleum to start a nearly 40-year career in the oil and gas industry. Phillips gave me the opportunity to grow in an industry that is noble and vitally important to economic growth and improving living standards. I was able to travel and better appreciate what is so special about the U.S.
Why become an MD Anderson advocate?
Being a UT Austin graduate, I was aware of the UT System and MD Anderson's special place in it. I was proud to say that the UT System had the best cancer research hospital in the world. Of most importance to our family, MD Anderson treated our son's melanoma cancer. It is important to give back, and when Harry Longwell asked me to succeed him as chair of the Clinical Operations Committee while he successfully chaired the recent capital campaign, I accepted. I learned a great deal, working with Dr. Tom Burke, and better understood the uniqueness and commitment of the entire MD Anderson team.
How do you like to spend your spare time?
In many ways it doesn't seem as if I have retired. I spend a great deal of time on public company boards and charitable initiatives. I enjoy this and as it's said, "You stay young by keeping your mind in the game." I do have some spare time, and I like flying airplanes and maybe some golf, although the golf is more an aspiration at this point. Many retired people like to travel. This is not particularly high on my list due to the many years of travel when working in the oil industry.
What's most important in life?
First, my faith. Second is family and friends. And third is to try to give back, as we all know how blessed we have been.