Of all the great things a person can do with his/her own life, none compares to self-less giving, where one expects nothing in return . Taking time out of a packed schedule and donating ones resources to the greater benefit of the community, is a commitment that cannot be taken for granted. For James Dondero , his commitment to philanthropy is one of his greatest calling in life , despite experiencing overwhelming success in the finance world.
Dondero is the president of Highland Capital Management, an investment firm that helps individual investors manage their asset portfolios, equity accounts, hedge funds, distressed debts and long-only funds. It is in Dallas, Texas that his company has its headquarters. Consequently, most of James Dondero’s initiatives are towards the Dallas community. For most people, having a glamorous finance career would be the culmination of their life’s efforts, but not for James Dondero. For Dondero he subscribes to a higher purpose and calling, and being of service to fellow humankind is by far the noblest act.
Commitment to Dallas Zoo
Dallas Zoo is one of the main recipients of Dondero’s efforts. After the management of the Dallas zoo decided to shut down operations of their hippo habitat in 2001, James Dondero stepped in and donated $1 million to enable the hippo habitat to stay afloat.
Other philanthropic causes
His generous commitment to Dallas Zoo is just one among many of the charity efforts that Dondero is involved in. The successful entrepreneur also actively supports the Perot Museum of Natural Science, the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Institute, the Tower Scholars program and Education is Freedom Charity. To further his philanthropic efforts, James teamed up with Mary Jalonick to identify a number of charities that they would be best suited to sponsor. Since then, Dondero has increased his charity budget to more than $3million annually.