Jere W. Thompson, Jr.
Jere W. Thompson, Jr.

DALLAS – September 1, 2022 – Southwestern Medical Foundation announces newly elected Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Jere W. Thompson, Jr., and named six new members to its Board during their recent annual meeting. New Trustees Kim Askew, Pete Chilian, Peter Brundage, Michael Kahn, Linda Kao, and Amy McKnight will bring their unique perspective and proven leadership to the Board.

Southwestern Medical Foundation is a public health care charitable corporation advancing progress in medicine, primarily at UT Southwestern Medical Center and its related institutions, by connecting donors with innovative programs, managing philanthropic funds, and building broad engagement on the need for quality medical education, research, and clinical care. In his new role as board Chairman, Thompson will work closely with Foundation President and CEO, Kathleen M. Gibson, leading the Board of Trustees in growing the organization’s impact and reach.

Thompson has been a member of the Board since 1999. He is succeeding James R. Huffines, who served as Chairman since 2019.

“It has been a distinct privilege and an honor to serve as Chairman of the Foundation for the past three years,” said Huffines. “Jere has been a long-time friend of mine for 40 years and has long served on the Executive Committee, Audit Committee, and other roles. I have no doubt that he will be an outstanding Chairman for this Foundation, guiding the mission through his business expertise.”

As an active Board member, Thompson has served in leadership roles across several committees and has been instrumental in helping fulfill the mission of Southwestern Medical Foundation. Three generations of his family established the Thompson Family Fund, which contributed $5 million in support of the UT Southwestern Peter O’Donnell Jr. Brain Institute in 2021.

An accomplished businessman and entrepreneur, Thompson was Co-Founder and CEO of Ambit Energy, a $1.2 billion retail energy provider. Prior to Ambit, in 1992 Mr. Thompson founded CapRock Fiber Network, which built, owned, and operated fiber and broadband data networks across Texas and four neighboring states. He took CapRock Communications public and was CEO until it was acquired in 2000.

Mr. Thompson is past Chairman of the Dallas Citizens Council and sits on the Boards of Southwestern Medical Foundation, Hoblitzelle Foundation, O’Donnell Foundation, Dallas Citizens Council, Dallas Medical Resource, Texas Transportation Alliance, and Cistercian Preparatory School. He served for 11 years as a Board member, including six years as Chairman, of the Texas Turnpike Authority and later the North Texas Tollway Authority. 

It is equally inspiring to continue to attract outstanding talent, such as Jere Thompson, Jr., as Chairman, and this distinctive group of community leaders as Trustees. Jere has been a critical leader, helping to ensure the growth and progress we have made. I know he will bring great vision and insight in accomplishing the many opportunities ahead.”

Kathleen Gibson
President & CEO of Southwestern Medical Foundation

Mr. Thompson grew up in Dallas and graduated from Cistercian Preparatory School. He received an Economics degree from Stanford University and an MBA from The University of Texas at Austin. He and his wife, Carolyn, have been married 36 years and have five children.

“I’m honored to continue serving our community as Chairman of Southwestern Medical Foundation,” said Thompson. “Partnering with our Board of Trustees, we will expand our region’s legacy of walking alongside medical leaders to build a healthier, happier tomorrow. I am also grateful to follow in the footsteps of James and his tremendous three years of service and leadership.”

“Our business community has long been a driver of excellence and innovation, and it is an honor to have worked with Chairman James Huffines,” said Gibson. “It is equally inspiring to continue to attract outstanding talent, such as Jere Thompson, Jr., as Chairman, and this distinctive group of community leaders as Trustees. Jere has been a critical leader, helping to ensure the growth and progress we have made. I know he will bring great vision and insight in accomplishing the many opportunities ahead.”

New Board of Trustees Members

Kim Askew headshot - new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Kim Askew

Kim Askew is a Partner at DLA Piper and represents clients in significant employment matters involving claims of race, disability, gender and age discrimination, and sexual harassment, as well as in litigation involving business torts, trade secrets, non-compete, and non-solicitation and employment agreements. She has successfully tried cases to jury and non-jury verdicts for over 35 years in state and federal courts across the US and has handled appeals before federal and Texas appellate courts.

Peter Brundage Headshot, new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Peter D. Brundage

Peter D. Brundage is a Senior Managing Director and Head of Evercore’s Dallas Advisory Practice. Prior to joining Evercore, Peter was Managing Director in the Investment Banking Division of Goldman Sachs, where he worked for over 30 years. During his career, Peter advised companies throughout the Southwest on a wide range of transactions including financings and mergers & acquisitions. He has worked extensively with companies in the energy, industrial, consumer, and technology markets.

Pete chilian headshot, new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Pete Chilian

Pete Chilian is a Managing Director with J.P. Morgan Private Bank. As the Head of the Dallas region, he directs a team of 100+ bankers and specialists to present a full range of wealth management services to affluent families and foundations in the greater Dallas area, East Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. In this senior role, he delivers investment, banking, lending, and planning resources to help clients fulfill their purpose and leave a legacy for the next generation.

Michael Kahn, new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Michael Kahn

Michael Kahn is an Executive Director at HPS Investment Partners. Prior to joining HPS in 2018, Mr. Kahn served as the Director of Business Development at Talamod Asset Management where he was responsible for articulating investment strategy, performance, and positioning to private and institutional capital sources. Prior to Talamod, Mr. Kahn was a Vice President at JPMorgan Private Bank, where he delivered customized wealth management solutions to ultra-high net worth individuals and family offices. Mr. Kahn holds a BBA from the McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas in Austin.

Linda Kao, new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Linda Kao

Linda Kao is the Assistant Dean of Global Programs at the SMU Cox School of Business where she directs the strategic planning, creation, and management of international experiential learning opportunities across all its graduate programs. Prior to joining SMU and up to 2002, Linda worked on seven Summer and Winter Olympic Games, three World Cups, and 25 live telecasts of Miss Universe, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, and several international events. She has also served as the chairwoman of the Greater Dallas Asian American Chamber of Commerce. 

Amy McKnight, new trustee at southwestern medical foundation.

Amy McKnight

Amy McKnight is a native Texan, born in Houston and a graduate of Southern Methodist University. Amy worked at Vogue in New York and later attended Parsons School of Design. After 12 years in New York, she relocated with her family to San Francisco in 2011. In addition to being active at her children’s schools, she was a board member of the University of California, San Francisco Foundation, The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and Family House San Francisco. Amy returned to Texas in 2020 and is thrilled to be back in Dallas with her husband, Drew, and their two children. She is a full-time mom and an active community volunteer.



Southwestern Medical Foundation is a public charity and a registered 501(c)(3) organized in 1939 with a question: “Why not a great medical center in the Southwestern United States?” The Foundation was created to rally citizens in support of the highest quality health care possible in the Southwestern US. Out of that community vision, UT Southwestern Medical Center emerged. Today it remains the Foundation’s partner and most significant beneficiary. Southwestern Medical Foundation is guided by four core principles: Service to Community, Vision of Excellence, Mindful Stewardship, and Best Outcomes. Each principle is a promise to donors, beneficiaries, and generations to come that the Foundation is dedicated to bringing the gift of better health to the Southwest and the world beyond. Southwestern Medical Foundation holds a 100 out of 100 Encompass rating with Charity Navigator and a Platinum rating with Candid (formerly GuideStar) – the highest status offered by each rating organization. These organizations rate governance, accountability, and transparency, supported by both qualitative and quantitative measures.

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