SMU Magazine

SMU Magazine is updated monthly on this website and the print edition is published each spring and fall.

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Ashlee Hunt Kleinert ’88 shines a light on the tough topic of sex trafficking

A young woman carrying a backpack walked into the Fairmont Dallas bar, sat next to Ashlee Hunt Kleinert ’88 and her husband, Chris ’88, and ordered a glass of water. In her cutoff overalls and tank top, she stood out in the crowd of suits and cocktail attire. The Kleinerts, who were at the downtown hotel for a social event, thought she looked too young to sit at the bar. They guessed she was about 17 or 18. More conspicuous, though, was the young woman’s trembling discomfort. “She was constantly looking over her shoulder, scanning the room and scraping her nails along the bar’s surface,” Kleinert remembers. “She seemed terrified.” New Friends New Life, co-founded by Nancy Ann Hunter Hunt ’65, Pat Schenkel and Gail Turner in 1998, helps human trafficking survivors. Kleinert, a longtime volunteer with New Friends New Life, a faith-based Dallas nonprofit offering a comprehensive program for human trafficking survivors, recognized the behavior of a young woman being exploited. “Her pimp likely sat among the patrons, keeping watch while she waited to join a john in a hotel room,” Kleinert says. When her husband suggested passing along a note about New Friends and the phone number, Kleinert hesitated. Through her volunteer work, she knew that if the pimp were watching, such contact could put the trafficking victim in peril. Torn by the possible ramifications [...]

2021-05-13T13:06:32-05:00 October 20, 2020|

SMU Alumna Drives The Local Food-Truck Scene

EXCERPT The following story about entrepreneur and SMU alumna Ashlee Hunt Kleinert '88 appears in D CEO, September 2013. Kleinert's food truck, Ruthie's Rolling Café, is a regular on campus at Food Truck Tuesdays and Thursdays, as well as special events. Ruthie's Rolling Café's Entrepreneurial Appetite By Carol Shih Ruthie's Rolling Café at SMU September 12. When Ashlee Hunt Kleinert told her father four years ago that she wanted to start a food-truck business, Ray L. Hunt couldn’t believe what he was hearing. At first he thought she was talking about those vehicles that visit construction sites and sell frozen and prepackaged foods. Hunt, heir of oil tycoon H. L. Hunt and CEO of Hunt Consolidated, knows the energy business inside and out. But a restaurant on wheels? What was that? And why would anyone stand in line instead of going to a brick-and-mortar restaurant for a nice meal? Kleinert’s father wasn’t the only one who wondered why the mother of three wanted to get into the food-truck business. A graduate of Southern Methodist University, Kleinert had never taken a business class. Still, the energetic blonde had founded an events company (In Any Event) and co-founded a nonprofit (Executives in Action). She was inspired to get into the business after hearing at an events convention that food trucks were projected to become a hot new trend. As it turns out, Kleinert had excellent [...]

2018-10-17T14:37:17-05:00 September 11, 2013|

SMU Magazine

SMU Magazine is updated monthly on this website and the print edition is published each spring and fall.

Browse the Archives