Find a back issue

Making Dallas Even Better

Surprise Report: Is Jaap Van Zweden Bound for New York?

Jaap van Zweden could be close to bolting his job as music director at the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. According to today’s New York Times, the Dutch-born celebrity conductor is one of two leading candidates to become music director at the New York Philharmonic. While the paper said a representative of the Dallas conductor declined to comment, the under-the-radar development came as a “surprise” to one observer who’s intimately acquainted with the DSO. The reason: reports of van Zweden’s “abrasive” treatment of some DSO musicians, which the observer assumed would have knocked van Zweden out of contention for the prestigious New York post. The music director’s contract with the Dallas orchestra runs through the 2018-2019 season.

UPDATE: Van Zweden is also music director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. Earlier this week, he was asked by the South China Morning Post about the New York Philharmonic job and replied: “Well, whatever is going to happen, I have a phenomenal relationship with that orchestra, and it’s the same type of relationship which I found when I came [to Hong Kong], this eagerness, this enthusiastic music-making of the highest level. And of course it’s such an institution, it’s one of the top orchestras in the world, and I’m very honoured that I’m being named in these [newspaper] articles. But we will see.”

Read More

Can Dallas Really Escape the Downside of Lower Oil Prices?

As Jason mentioned this morning, Mayor Rawlings apparently agrees with the conventional wisdom that plummeting oil prices aren’t all that worrisome for Dallas because we’re more diversified now, etc., etc. (Hey, that’s Houston’s problem.) But, the reality may be more sobering. Some of Big D’s leading business people—the ones who buy the Chanel handbags and the private jets and the weekend ranches and pony up tens of thousands of dollars for soup kitchens and inner-city education—made piles of dough off the shale boom, either directly or through investments. Now they’re either tightening their belts or at least starting to get jittery.

Read More

Event Aims to Inspire DISD Students to Attend College

When sophomores and juniors from eight Dallas high schools turned up for a College and Career Fair at The University of Texas at Dallas Wednesday morning, there was plenty of rah-rah as the students entered the school gym through a gauntlet of UTD cheerleaders and red-jacketed City Year members clapping encouragement. But according to Dallas […]

Read More

Forest Park Medical Center: More Like Krispy Kreme, or a ‘Gold-plated House of Popsicle Sticks’?

After writing about it for our business magazine and online for D Healthcare Daily, which he edits, D CEO Senior Editor Matt Goodman has become the go-to guy for reporting on the head-spinning collapse of the Forest Park Medical Center chain. Now Matt’s insights have been tapped by Lauren Silverman at KERA News, which ran a good synopsis of the luxury-hospital fiasco this week.

Likening once-fast-growing Forest Park to a “gold-plated house of Popsicle sticks,” Silverman quotes a Minnesota healthcare analyst who says the chain’s meltdown reminded him of what happened after Krispy Kreme opened several stores in the Twin Cities: “There was a huge amount of buzz, there were reports about cars lining up blocks long to get Krispy Kreme donuts and after a few months the excitement died out, [and] within about two years, all four stores had closed.”

Karl Rove Rips Media for Enabling the Rise of Donald Trump

Karl Rove, the GOP guru behind the election of former President George W. Bush, is continuing to say many of the same things about Donald Trump that he has for months: the billionaire businessman is divisive, demagogic, and has a “high floor and a low ceiling,” etc. But where Rove insisted as recently as November that Trump would not, or was “unlikely” to, win the Republican presidential nomination, he now seems to have changed his tune.

These days Rove concedes that Trump might win the GOP nod, so long as the field stays crowded. But he adds that, even if that happens, there’s no way the businessman could defeat Hillary Clinton in the general election. As part of this revised narrative, Rove is sketching out exactly where and how Trump would be vulnerable in a general election—and even suggesting some TV commercials that might help Hillary beat him.

Read More

There Wasn’t That Much Good News at SMU Economic Forecast Session

While the North Texas economy continues to be relatively healthy—especially in the real estate sector—the outlook is much bleaker for the country as a whole. That was the consensus of a group of business-school academics at today’s eighth annual SMU Cox Economic Outlook Panel at Southern Methodist University. The panel’s tone was set by Albert […]

Read More

Van Duyne: ‘Sad’ That Outsiders Don’t Understand Irving

Irving Mayor Beth Van Duyne says her support for legislative prohibitions on the application of foreign law—think Sharia courts—here is part and parcel of her sworn duty to uphold the U.S. and Texas constitutions. She supports Gov. Greg Abbott’s position against the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Texas. And, after calling Irving one of the most diverse and “happy” communities anywhere, she told a reporter she’d have no comment on various pro- and anti-Muslim rallies there—including one planned for late May by robe- and hood-wearing members of the Texas Rebel Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. But then she added: “I think it’s sad that we had outside people coming in that have a false impression of our city.” Van Duyne made her comments during and after a National Center for Policy Analysis luncheon today in Addison featuring her, Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, and Corpus Christi Mayor Nelda Martinez.

Hip-Hop, Snakebit, Janitor Work: New Dallas 500 Illuminates the City’s Most Powerful Businesspeople

The Mavs’ Mark Cuban is afraid of heights. Karen Katz of Neiman Marcus Group loves hip-hop music. Investor Kenny Troutt, who owns a Kentucky Derby-winning horse farm, is allergic to horse hair. Exxon Mobil’s Rex Tillerson worked in Oklahoma as a janitor. BBVA Compass bank’s Key Coker was bitten by a five-foot-long rattlesnake. (Which later became a rattlesnake belt.) And Mike Boone of the Haynes & Boone law firm once found himself standing buck naked on the deck of a coed swimming pool in a downtown gym.

Those are just a few of the insider tidbits to be found in a new publication called Dallas 500, which puts a spotlight on the 500 most powerful business leaders in North Texas. Compiled by the editors of D CEO magazine after months of research, including hundreds of interviews, the inaugural standalone edition features the top influencers in more than 60 categories, from aviation and banking to restaurants and technology. Someone said Dallas 500 is destined to become the area’s “business bible”—okay, it was Wick who said that—and our choices are sure to generate some controversy. Unless you’re a D CEO subscriber, you’ll have to buy a copy to see what we’re talking about. Purchase details can be found here.

Read More

HP’s Meg Whitman: Companies Seeking Top Women Need to Look Hard, Not Wait

Companies aiming to hire more women for boards and other top positions have to work hard to find and recruit them, instead of waiting for candidates to come through the pipeline. That was the message Saturday from president and CEO Meg Whitman of Palo Alto, California-based Hewlett Packard Enterprise, whose tech industry is notoriously dominated […]

Read More

Karl Rove, Jim Messina Agree: Donald Trump Won’t Be the GOP Nominee

Political gurus Jim Messina, a Democrat, and Karl Rove, a Republican, concur that next year’s presidential race will be close—and that candidate Donald Trump won’t be the GOP nominee. “Karl and I agree that neither one is going to be president,” Messina said Friday, referring to Trump and Ben Carson, another Republican “outsider” candidate. Messina, […]

Read More

Charles Koch: GOP Presidential Candidates Too Mum on Corporate Welfare

Koch Industries chairman and CEO Charles G. Koch, who told USA Today this week that he’s unlikely to endorse a candidate in the Republican presidential primary, says he hasn’t heard “nearly enough” ideas from those candidates for reforming a political system he considers to be corrupt. “I don’t hear them talking about all this corporate […]

Read More

Millennials, Rapid Technological Change On The Minds of CEOs at Business Forum

For Jennifer Morgan of SAP America, it’s “executing” in the face of rapid change. For Paul Grangaard of Allen Edmonds Corp., it’s the pace of change specifically in online retailing. And for Fedele Bauccio of Bon Appetit Management Co., it’s the “broken model” in agribusiness, which isn’t moving fast enough toward ecological sustainability. These are […]

Read More

Akorbi CEO Claudia Mirza Honored as ‘Entrepreneurial Winning’ Woman

CEO Claudia Mirza, who grew up surrounded by violence in Medellin, Colombia, was recognized Thursday by EY for her Dallas-based company Akorbi, the fastest-growing language services provider in the world. Mirza was named one of 12 “EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women” at the EY Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs, California. The program helps female entrepreneurs […]

Read More

Dickey’s Barbecue Eyeing 2016 Growth in Japan, South Korea, Philippines

Dickey’s Barbecue CEO Roland Dickey Jr., who’s grown the nation’s biggest barbecue restaurant from 20 stores to 538, is cooking up plans to expand next year into Asia. After opening a projected 72 stores in 2015, the third-generation restaurateur has set his sights on Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines, where he says there’s “absolutely” […]

Read More

IPOs Sputtered in 2015 With Economic Volatility, Abundance of Private Capital

The U.S. market for initial public offerings this year was strong until August, when the market began sputtering over the global economy with the most volatility since 2008. That pushed many IPOs off at least until 2016, when still more “mediocre” economic growth is likely. That’s according to four experts addressing the outlook for IPOs […]

Read More