Gerald J. Ford

Gerald J. Ford Biography

Gerald J. Ford (born 1944) is an American businessman.


Early life

Gerald Ford was raised in Pampa, Texas and attended Pampa Senior High School. He graduated from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas in 1966, where he was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He received a J.D. from the SMU School of Law in 1969.


He is former Chairman of the board and Chief Executive Officer of Golden State Bancorp, Inc., headquartered in San Francisco. It was a holding company for the nation's second largest thrift institution and California's fourth largest bank. In 2002, he sold it to Citigroup for $6 billion. He is currently Chairman of the Board of Hilltop Holdings, a bank and insurance holding company. He also sits on the Boards of Directors of Freeport-McMoRan (FCX), the world's largest extractor of copper and gold.

He has also invested in First Acceptance Corporation, Pacific Capital Bancorp (Annual Sales $13 billion), Golden State Bancorp, FSB (federal savings bank that merged with Citigroup in 2002) Rio Hondo Land & Cattle Company (annual sales $1.6 million), Diamond Ford, Dallas (sales: $200 million), Scientific Games Corp., SWS Group (annual sales: $422 million); American Residential Cmnts LLC. His other investments include the auto-finance company AmeriCredit, Pacific Capital Bancorp and 120,000 acres (486 km˛) of rangeland in New Mexico.

In a 2010 interview on enterpreneurship with Forbes, he suggested reading The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Financier by Theodore Dreiser, The Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe, Too Big to Fail by Andrew Ross Sorkin and The Big Short by Michael Lewis.


He has been a member of the Southern Methodist University Board of Trustees since 1992. He is chair of the board's Finance Committee and a member of its Executive Committee, Trusteeship Committee, Committee on Athletics and Executive Committee of the Campaign for SMU. He also currently serves as co-chair of the Dedman College Campaign Committee and on the Executive Board of Dedman School of Law. He is a former member of the Executive Boards of Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Cox School of Business, John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies and Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series. He has also served as a regent for the Texas A&M University System. He donated US$20 million to build the new football stadium at SMU, named the Gerald J. Ford Stadium. He also donated US$10 million to the Weill Cornell Medical College at Cornell University.

Personal life

He is married, and has six children. His wife, Kelli, is an interior designer. They live in Dallas, Texas, and have homes in Manhattan, New York City and The Hamptons, a working ranch in New Mexico, and a thoroughbred farm in Kentucky. In 2012, they sold their Beverly Hills, California property to Byron Allen. As of September 2012, he is worth an estimated US$1.75 billion.

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