The Face of Determination and Hard Work: James Dondero

When it comes to hard work and determination, few people feel the payoffs more than the founders of Highland Acquisition Corporation. James Dondero, co-founder, Chief Executive Officer, and President of the Board of Directors of Highland has had a long road and successful career to get where he is today. James Dondero is now the leader of one of the largest investment firms in the Dallas area, and he is showing no signs of stopping his rise anytime soon. Visit Nexbank to know more about James.

Dondero started his career shortly after leaving the McIntire School of Commerce with a B.S. degree in Accounting and Finance at the University of Virginia. He found himself in a job at American Express in 1985 as a corporate bond analyst. After spending a few years learning the ropes, Dondero was able to help the firm grow and manage a $1 billion portfolio of fixed income funds. He soon found his calling, and moved to a much more lucrative position as a Chief Investment Officer of Protective Life’s GIV subsidiary. At Protective Life, Dondero used his business know-how and determination to grow a modest fund into over $2 billion in assets.

Now that James Dondero knew how to successfully work with investors and manage a fund, he decided to go all-in and start his own firm. He founded Highland Capital Management and never looked back. Visit to know more about James Dondero.

During the early years of Highland, Dondero focused on building up the collateralized loan obligations (CLO) market there. He also focused on working with several different customers, including public pension funds, funds of funds, endowments, foundations, governments, and financial institutions, to help diversify his base. He also decided to include emerging markets and other alternative markets in his company’s menu of options to help not only grow and diversity, but to attract new clients. In just a few short years, Dondero grew Highland to over 18 billion in managed assets.

When he is not working with his fund managers and growing his business, James Dondero enjoys spending time with other corporate Boards, including the American Banknote, MGM Studios, and Southern Methodist University School of Business Board of Directors. He is also involved in charitable giving to Snowball Express, the Perot Museum of Natural Science, and Education is Freedom. Overall, his focus is to continue his work to help put Dallas on the map as the location of dedicated and determined fund management companies.


One thought on “The Face of Determination and Hard Work: James Dondero”

  1. The picture that he has painted himself is one that I think would be an inspirational tool to a lot of young people in the business industry. Usually rushessays would be enough to address the problem that most entrepreneurs face almost on a daily basis. Building a business in a successful venture is always no an easy task but he has done very well with his time and this has made him so unique in the finance sector.

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