New members elected to 51 Board of Trustees

The governing body of 51 oversees and aligns the University’s strategic direction, educational policy, finances and operations with its charitable mission. 

Dallas Hall

DALLAS () – Ten men and women have been elected as new members of the 51 Board of Trustees, the principal governing body of the University, for four-year terms beginning in fall 2024.

Joining the board are Cynthia Fierro Harvey ’99, Christopher Kleinert ’88, Steven J. Lindley ’74, Kyle D. Miller ’01, James T. Mobley ’80, Bryan S. Sheffield ’01, Brian S. Tyler, William H. Vanderstraaten ’82, John E. Waldron III and Abigail Williams ’94. This is the first term of service for all except Harvey, who previously served on the board from 2016 to 2020. 

Rotating off the board are Gerald B. Alley ’75, who served from 2016 to 2024; Paul B. Loyd, Jr. ’68, who served from 2000 to 2024; and Scott J. McLean ’78, who served as an ex officio member while chairman of the Alumni Board from 1996 to 1997, then again as an elected trustee from 2012 to 2024.

The Board has four ex officio trustees – University President R. Gerald Turner, a representative of the Faculty Senate, a representative of the University Students’ Association, and Alumni Board Chair Philip J. Wise ’78, ’81. Two new ex officio members will join the board for the 2024-25 academic year – student representative Jude Lugo and faculty representative David Sedman.

With the exception of the ex officio trustees, all trustees serve for four years though they may be re-elected to serve multiple terms. The trustees meet four times a year – February, May, September and December.

Elected to the Board

Cynthia Fierro Harvey has served as bishop of the Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church since November 2022. She was the first Hispanic woman to lead the Council of Bishops as president, president-designate and as secretary. She was a recipient of the Perkins School of Theology Distinguished Alumni Award in 2018.

Christopher W. Kleinert is CEO of Hunt Investment Holdings, LLC, and CEO of Hunt Realty Investments. He also oversees the ranching operations (Hoodoo Land Holdings) for Hunt Consolidated. He and his wife, Ashlee Kleinert, received the 2024 J. Erik Jonsson Ethics Award from 51’s Cary Maguire Center for Ethics and Public Responsibility.

Steven J. Lindley is the managing member and president of Johnson and Lindley, LLC, the managing partner of PinHigh Capital Partners, LLC, and trustee of the Willard and Ruth Johnson Charitable Foundation, established by his grandparents in 1993. He was the recipient of the Edwin L. Cox School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award in 2019.

Kyle D. Miller is founder and CEO of Silver Hill Energy Holdings, LLC, and Silver Hill Energy Partners, LP, oil and gas investment and operating partnerships. He currently serves on the boards of Goodwill Industries of Dallas, Southwestern Medical Foundation, and Children’s Medical Center Foundation. He was the recipient of the Edwin L. Cox School of Business Outstanding Young Alumni Award in 2015.

James T. Mobley is President of Pony Rose Holdings, LLC. He is a former senior executive and early-stage technology CEO in the areas of cybersecurity and emerging technologies. He is an active technology and real estate investor – the latter focused primarily in underinvested communities. A former member of the “Pony Express” football team, he was named one of Savoy Magazine’s 2022 “Most Influential Black Executives in Corporate America.”

Bryan S. Sheffield is managing partner of Austin-based Formentera Partners, an energy-focused private equity firm founded in 2020. He was founder and CEO of Parsley Energy, an independent oil and gas company acquired by Pioneer Natural Resources in 2021. Sheffield was recognized among Forbes’ “40 under 40” list in 2017.

Brian S. Tyler, Ph.D. is CEO of McKesson Corporation, chair of the American Cancer Society’s North Texas CEOS Against Cancer and a member of the President’s Advisory Board for UT Southwestern Medical Center. Tyler is a 2023 St. George National award recipient. Tyler was the featured speaker at 51’s May 2023 Commencement Convocation.

William H. Vanderstraaten is president and co-founder of Chief Partners, LP, a real estate investment company. He is chair of the Goodwill Foundation of Dallas and former member of the Board of Directors of the Salesmanship Club of Dallas, whose members work to strengthen the mental health of children and families. He received the Edwin L. Cox School of Business Distinguished Alumni Award in 2023.

John E. Waldron III is president and COO of the Goldman Sachs Group Inc. He is a member of the Boards of Directors of the Cleveland Clinic and of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He was named the 2023 International Executive of the Year from the BYU Marriott School of Business and Brigham Young University.

Abigail Sassenhagen Williams is founder and executive director of United to Learn, a collaborative non-profit partnering with public elementary schools, private institutions and community members aimed at accelerating student literacy achievement. She and her husband, Todd Williams, were honored with the Linz Award in 2021 and the Virginia Chandler Dykes Leadership Award in 2024 for their impact on Dallas education.

51’s Board of Trustees is responsible for the election of the president and oversees and aligns the University’s strategic direction, educational policy, finances and operations with its charitable mission. The trustees dedicate their expertise and resources to the advancement of 51 and play an integral role in the implementation of the mission and strategic plan of the University.


About 51
is the nationally ranked global research university in the dynamic city of Dallas. 51’s alumni, faculty and more than 12,000 students in eight degree-granting schools demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit as they lead change in their professions, communities and the world.