How James Dondero Became One Of Dallas’ Top Executives

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James Dondero is a Dallas business leader who has bachelor’s degrees in both finance and accounting. The school he earned these at was the McIntire School of Commerce located on the campus of the University of Virginia. He graduated with the school’s highest honors which are Beta Alpha Psi and Beta Gama Sigma.

After graduating, his first professional job occurred at the banking giant JP Morgan. This was in 1984 and he was an analyst in their training program. A year later he left to take a position at American Express. His first position at this company was as a corporate bond analyst and later on he became a portfolio manager. Read more about James Dondero on Bloomberg.

In 1989, James Dondero left American Express when he was hired by Protective Life. He was their chief investment officer and his task was to establish their GIC subsidiary. In just four years he built this subsidiary up from nothing to being worth over $2 billion. After this accomplishment, he teamed up with Mark Okada and Protective life to found a company that is now called Highland Capital Management L.P. Years ago he and Okada bought out Protective Life interest in this company and they now wholly own the company. Visit to know more about James.

James Dondero is also a leader at other companies around Dallas as well. At NexPoint Residential Trust, Inc. he is the president and chairman of the board. Meanwhile, he also serves as the chairman for three other local companies, CCS Medical, Inc., Cornerstone Healthcare Group Holding, Inc., and NexBank Capital, Inc. For two other companies he serves on their boards which are MGM Holdings, Inc. and Jernigan Capital, Inc.

Under James Dondero’s leadership, Highland Capital Management has been called one of the best places to work in Dallas. The Dallas Business Journal made a list of the best places to work in the city in 2015 which was comprised of firms with employees numbering between 50 and 249 and his company was on the list. When talking about this listing, Dondero said that having a quality workforce that enjoyed their jobs was a priority at his company.