In The News

An energy independent future for America is in sight – but more needs to be done

Today marks the 11th anniversary of the Pickens Plan launch. I began my crusade during the 2008 presidential campaign because I felt that it was necessary to refocus America’s attention on the need for energy independence from OPEC oil. 11 years later, the current state of US energy is stronger than ever. However, more needs to be done.

That is why I like to consider this day to be a special holiday I call “Energy Independence Day.” I celebrate today by honoring the dedicated members of the Pickens Plan, leaders in Washington who promote energy reform, and the commitment of millions of Americans to break our addiction to OPEC oil. I hope you will join me in taking a moment to reflect on the progress we have collectively made so that we may continue to focus on leveraging an “all of the above” strategy as it relates to energy. 

Read more...

A historic moment for veterinary medicine and the agriculture industry in Texas

As Dr. Guy Loneragan, Dean of the Texas Tech veterinary school, says: “Texas has one of the best veterinary institutions in the country, but it can only supply about 25 percent of the new veterinary workforce every year. The state has outgrown what any one institution can provide by many fold over.”

To address this problem that our state is facing, state legislators and the governor recently approved a budget that fully funds the appropriation requested for this session ($17.4 million) for the Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine to be located in Amarillo. The new school will be located on the same campus as the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, bringing a new and innovative approach to veterinary education to our state.

Texas Tech’s veterinary school will support the agricultural community, an important industry that fuels our state’s economy, and it will provide educational opportunities for new generations of Texans. State funding will unlock more than $90 million that has been raised by generous donors and communities in Texas who strongly believe in Texas Tech’s veterinary school.

Read more...

If this table could talk

Imagine being able to buy a priceless piece of history – a piece of history that has been the site of heady conversations with presidents, athletes, journalists, titans of industry, and others, sitting around with me talking about deals, investments, and the future of our country. This piece of history – my conference room table – featured this past week in a Dallas Morning News story can be yours. For a price.

Read more...

Taking charge of my own brain health

In a few weeks – May 22 to be exact – I will celebrate my 91st birthday.

I’m a lucky man, but I recognize a lot has changed for me in the past few decades.Twenty years ago, for example, I worked out with a trainer every morning. The goal was to be physically fit and, yes, help the body live as long as I could possibly push the envelope. But a stroke and a head injury later, I realize I could have been strengthening my brain capacity as well. Now recovering slowly, I’m all on that.

Supporting brain health research has been both a philanthropic mission and a physiological experience for me lately. In addition to donating to The University of Texas at Dallas’ Center for BrainHealth for educational and research initiatives, I’ve also been a participant in research projects.

Read more...

The most important question to jump-start any meeting

During the seven decades of my career, I have had a great track record of building outstanding teams. I have always felt it important to concentrate on our goals, not the size of our organization.

To me, measuring profits has always been a better yardstick than the size of our budgets. There is little point in developing a $10,000 accounting system to track 10 cent pencils.

I credit much of my success to how well these teams performed. While knowing your team and supporting them in times good and bad are critical, defining a culture and setting expectations are equally essential. Communication is the key — there should be no surprises. If I’m in the loop, I’m on your team.

I find the most important question I can ask to start a meeting is simply, “Whaddya got?”

Read more...