James Dondero: Corporate President and Consummate Philanthropist

The management staff at the Dallas Zoo is as happy as a herd of hippos now that the new Simmons Hippo Post is finally in operation for visitors to view the amazing creatures it is intended to house. It has been several years since the Dallas Zoo has had a suitable habitat for the giant creatures that require constant access to suitable water habitats. The project began with a donation from the Harold Simmons Foundation that does so much philanthropy work in the area. But, the Simmons group is not the only contributors to the zoo, as James Dondero of Highland Capital Management has stepped in with a $1,000,000 donation as well to construct an additional lodge adjacent to the hippo habitat for further educational purposes, displays, and special events hosted by the city zoo.

The contribution to the Dallas Zoo project is not the first philanthropic endeavor for Dondero, who is President of Highland Capital Management investment group. The company organization has developed a comprehensive plan for certain contributions in the Dallas area that are intended to elevate the cultural aspects of the entire urban region. Other donations to specific projects have included the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, the American Heart Association, and the Centre of Brain Health. Dondero has surely impressed Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who refers to the contributors of both Highland Capital Management and the Herbert Simmons Foundation as inspiring members of the community. Indeed, more local corporate presidents should be more like James Dondero in regards to donations that enhance the attractiveness and the charm of the Dallas-Ft. Worth region.

Dondero has also shown that Highland Capital Management has a comprehensive program in mind now that they have joined forces with the Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation that is evaluating other projects where their philanthropic drive can be directed. Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation director Linda Owen will serve as coordinator and strategic support management for Highland Capital Management as they look for further contribution campaigns throughout northeast Texas.