Michael M. Boone

Memorial service for Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler ’48 held Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017

Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler '48 at a ceremony where she received SMU's 2011 J. Erik Jonsson Ethics AwardThe SMU community celebrated the life of civic and philanthropic leader Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler ’48, former chair of the SMU Board of Trustees, on Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017. Altshuler died Dec. 8.

As a leader, Altshuler was known for her intelligence, decisiveness, legendary fundraising skills and sense of humor. As a result, she became the first woman to lead numerous Dallas boards and organizations, including the Board of Trustees of her alma mater, SMU. Education, health and services for some of the most downtrodden members of society were areas that attracted her support, but her generosity touched nearly every Dallas civic organization. Her influence, however, went far beyond Dallas. Altshuler was recognized nationally and internationally as a dedicated civic leader and philanthropist.

“The loss of Ruth leaves a major hole in the hearts of us all,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Ruth was my dear friend as well as a tireless fighter for SMU and all causes she believed in. She didn’t do anything halfway. Her work on behalf of Dallas and SMU was legendary years ago, and yet she continued to lead and inspire us year after year. Her impact on her city and her University will live on forever.”

“Ruth was a wonderful member of the SMU Board of Trustees. She was high energy and full of enthusiasm in everything she did to help make SMU a leading global university,” said Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67, SMU Board of Trustees chair. “As a civic leader, Ruth fell into that special category known as the best of the best. The SMU community will miss her dearly.”

A Dallas native and 1948 SMU graduate, Altshuler served on the SMU Board of Trustees for 50 years. She brought knowledge and understanding of every aspect of University life to her position, along with a great love of SMU.

Altshuler has served on nearly every board or council at SMU, including individual schools, libraries, lecture series and search committees. She served on the executive boards of six out of SMU’s seven schools, as well as the executive boards of SMU’s libraries, Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series and the Maguire Ethics Center. In Altshuler’s 50 years of leadership, she worked with six SMU presidents, and helped select two of them as a member of the presidential search committees which appointed Dr. R. Gerald Turner and Dr. James H. Zumberge.

“I talked to Ruth almost every day,” said Brad Cheves, vice president for development and external affairs at SMU. “She was fully committed to this University — offering advice and counsel on all manner of topics. But ultimately what she was most committed to was helping get things done. It was never about Ruth; it was always about others and how she could help them accomplish more than they may have thought they could.”

Her understanding of SMU’s strengths and challenges led to intentional and thoughtful leadership and giving, benefitting student achievement and faculty teaching and research. The projects she supported were varied, but all struck a personal chord. They ranged from endowing business professorships in honor of brothers James M. Collins and Carr P. Collins, to providing research funds for history professors in honor of her son, history buff Charles Stanton Sharp, Jr. She and her husband, Dr. Kenneth Z. Altshuler, endowed the Altshuler Learning Enhancement Center because of their interest in supporting the achievements of young people. In addition, she supported the Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professors Award, which annually honors four professors for their notable commitment to fostering student learning, as well as endowing lecture series, scholarships and facilities for areas ranging from athletics to arts to academics.

Altshuler received nearly every award SMU offers, including the 2011 J. Erik Jonsson Ethics award, presented by SMU’s Cary Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility to individuals who exemplify the spirit of moral leadership and public virtue, and the 1966 Distinguished Alumni Award. With her husband, Kenneth, the Altshulers were presented the 1998 Mustang Award for extraordinary philanthropy to the University.

The family asks that instead of flowers, donations be made in her honor to the Salvation Army.

> Read the full story from SMU News

Tune In: Watch SMU’s 103rd Opening Convocation live, Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017

President R. Gerald Turner will deliver the opening address, “World Changers Shaped Here,” at SMU’s 103rd Opening Convocation. The ceremony beings at 5:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017 in McFarlin Auditorium.

SMU Board of Trustees Chair Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67 , Faculty Senate President Paul Krueger and Student Body President David Shirzad will also give remarks. The Meadows Convocation Chorus, directed by Pamela Elrod Huffman, will provide music, accompanied by Sarah England.

The entire Convocation will be streamed over the internet via smu.edu/live. Click or tap the screen below to watch. The broadcast begins one hour before the ceremony starts.

> Download a PDF of the 103rd SMU Opening Convocation program

Updates from the May 5, 2017 meeting of the SMU Board of Trustees

In its quarterly meeting May 5, SMU’s Board of Trustees elected new officers, selected two new committee chairs and welcomed new incoming deans of the Edwin L. Cox School of Business and Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development. President R. Gerald Turner also agreed to a five-year extension, ensuring that he will continue to serve as president until at least May 31, 2022.

According to SMU Board of Trustees Chair Michael M. Boone, this action expresses the Board’s continuing confidence in Turner’s leadership. “The Board’s goal is to continue SMU’s momentum and its rising prominence at this historic time.”

The SMU Board reelected Boone as board chair. Robert H. Dedman, Jr. was elected vice-chair and chair-elect. He is expected to serve as board chair beginning in June 2018. David B. Miller was elected secretary. Two new committee chairs were chosen by the Board: Kelly Compton will chair the Academic Affairs Committee and Jeanne Tower Cox will chair the Student Affairs Committee.

New ex-officio members of the Board are SMU Faculty Senate President Paul Krueger, a professor of mechanical engineering in the Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering, SMU Alumni Board Chair Doug Smellage, 1977 SMU alumnus and Dallas businessman, and SMU Student Trustee Andrew Udofa, a 2014 SMU alumnus (degrees in biology and chemistry) and current Simmons School of Education and Human Development doctoral student.

SMU’s new deans, who will start at the University on Aug. 1, are Matthew B. Myers, Cox School of Business, and Stephanie L. Knight, Simmons School of Education and Human Development.

The Board also enthusiastically supported the Pony Power: Strengthening the Stampede initiative to strengthen annual support for scholarships and programs. The goal of this three-year effort is to increase current-use giving from its $43 million per year total to $50 million per year.

SMU marks finale of Second Century Campaign with opening of Crain Family Centennial Promenade

SMU unveiled a new campus monument recognizing major donors and dedicated a new pedestrian thoroughfare on Friday, marking the finale to the University’s historic $1.15 billion Second Century Campaign.

The Crain Family Centennial Promenade creates a north-south walkway across campus. Brick by brick, it links the namesake Crain family with more than 10,000 other donors whose inscribed pavers line the new promenade.

Each paver’s inscription tells a Hilltop story, and all who contributed were invited to share their reasons for giving online.

The Second Century Campaign broke previous University records with 183 commitments at the Leadership Gift level of $1 million or more. Major donors to the campaign, numbering more than 600, are also listed on the monument plaques.

“This is a joyful day for all of us,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Not only do we celebrate a job well done by our major donors and legions of others, but we also have the opportunity to join our friends and families in strolling this beautiful new promenade and reading the inscriptions. It’s a perfect finale for the Second Century Campaign and a lasting tribute to our generous donors.”

“The future for SMU and Dallas is brighter because of the incredible generosity of donors to this campaign,” said Gerald J. Ford ’66, ’69, SMU trustee and convening co-chair of the campaign. “What their gifts will do for the next generation of leaders, researchers, innovators, artists and entrepreneurs is impossible to measure at this time, but the impact will be unprecedented.”

Michael M. Boone ’63, ’67, chair of the SMU Board of Trustees and a campaign co-chair, said the relationship between SMU and its home in North Texas make for an ideal partnership.

“Dallas and SMU have grown up together, and both are experiencing an era of great promise and momentum,” Boone said. “Great global cities need great centers of learning that serve as incubators for creative ideas and innovative actions that change the world. I’m thrilled that this fundraising success helps ensure that SMU will continue to play a pivotal role in advancing the growth and entrepreneurial culture of Dallas for many years to come.”

> Read the full story from SMU News

Boone re-elected SMU Board of Trustees chair effective June 2015

Mike BooneCivic leader Michael M. Boone, co-founder of the law firm of Haynes and Boone, has been re-elected chair of the SMU Board of Trustees, the University’s 42-member governing board, effective June 2015.

“Mike Boone’s leadership has been crucial as SMU marks the final year of its centennial celebration and capital campaign,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “His able guidance has set a strong course as we prepare for our second century of achievement.”

Boone has been an SMU trustee since 1996. Throughout his service on the Board, he has been a member of virtually every Board committee, among them Finance, Audit and Trusteeship. A former adjunct professor of corporate securities law at the Dedman School of Law, he currently serves as vice chair of the Dedman Law School’s Executive Board. In leading the Board of Trustees, Boone serves as a co-chair of SMU Unbridled: The Second Century Campaign, which seeks $1 billion for scholarships, faculty and academic excellence and the campus experience.

In addition, Robert Dedman Jr. was re-elected vice chair of the Board of Trustees and David Miller was re-elected secretary.

Robert Dedman is the general partner of Putterboy, Ltd. and president of the Dedman family enterprise, DFI Management, Ltd. He was elected to the SMU Board of Trustees in 2004 and has served as secretary of the Board since 2010. He also serves on the Executive Boards of Dedman College and Dedman School of Law and on The Second Century Campaign Leadership Council. He previously served SMU on the board of the John G. Tower Center for Political Studies in Dedman College, the 21st Century Council and the Texas Campaign Committee for The Campaign for SMU.

David Miller is co-founder of EnCap Investments L.P., a leading private equity firm based in Houston and Dallas, where he serves as a partner. He also serves as president of the David B. Miller Family Foundation. Miller has served as a member of the SMU Board of Trustees since 2008 and is a member of the Second Century Campaign Leadership Council. He is chair of the Executive Board for the Edwin L. Cox School of Business, co-chair of The Second Century Campaign Steering Committee for Cox School of Business and serves on the Campaign Steering Committee for Athletics.

Mike Boone to receive J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award

Mike BooneDallas attorney and SMU Trustee Michael M. Boone has been chosen to receive the 2007-08 J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award from the University’s Cary M. Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility. Boone will be honored in a luncheon ceremony at 11:30 a.m. Feb. 12 at the Belo Mansion.

A 1967 graduate of SMU’s Dedman School of Law, Boone has more than 40 years of experience in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, and securities transactions. As co-founder of Haynes and Boone L.L.P., he has been a catalyst for programs that promote diversity in the workplace and encourage participation in public service projects. In the Dallas community, Boone has served as president of the Dallas Citizens Council, as a leader at Preston Road Church of Christ and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Highland Park Independent School District. At SMU, Boone serves on the Board of Trustees and the Executive Committee of the Dedman School of Law. He received the University’s Distinguished Alumnus Award in 1996.

The Maguire Center annually presents the J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award – named in honor of the former Dallas mayor – to individuals who “exemplify the spirit of moral leadership and public virtue.” Past winners include Curtis W. Meadows Jr., Dr. Charles C. Sprague, Stanley Marcus, William T. Solomon, Jack Lowe Jr., Dr. Ron J. Anderson, Tom Luce, Caren Prothro, Roger Staubach and Rev. Zan Wesley Holmes Jr.

Luncheon tickets are $50 each. For more information, contact Johnny Armijo, 8-4303.