December Commencement Convocation

December Graduation

Speaker

Robert H. Dedman, Jr. ’80, ’84, is president and CEO of DFI Management, Ltd., and the general partner of Putterboy, Ltd., the owner of the Pinehurst Resort and Country Club in North Carolina. He is chair of the SMU Board of Trustees.

Dedman received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Texas at Austin before earning two degrees from SMU – an M.B.A. with highest honors and a J.D. cum laude.

After working on Wall Street with Salomon Brothers, Dedman went on to a successful career at ClubCorp, a leading operator of golf courses, private clubs and resorts. Starting as director of corporate planning, he quickly rose through the ranks and was named president in 1989, CEO in 1998 and chairman of ClubCorp in 2002. The Dedman family sold the company in 2006.

At SMU, Dedman is continuing the historic leadership and vision of his parents, Nancy Dedman ’50 and the late Robert H. Dedman, Sr. ’53 LLM, who served on the SMU Board of Trustees from 1976 to 2002 and as its chair from 1992 to 1996. Their major gifts to SMU have had a sweeping impact, including in the areas of humanities and sciences, law and lifetime sports.

Dedman began his term as Board chair in June 2018 after serving as vice-chair and chair-elect. He was elected to the Board in 2004 and since 1990 has served in numerous SMU committee and board leadership roles. He currently is a member of the Board’s Special Committee on Development, the Pony Power Leadership Committee and the Tate Lecture Series Board. He also serves on the Dedman College Executive Board and the Dedman School of Law Executive Board. He previously chaired the Dedman School of Law Executive Board and 21st Century Council, an advisory organization to the SMU president.

A philanthropic and civic leader, Dedman also sits on the Southwestern Medical Foundation Board, the UT Southwestern President’s Advisory Board and the UT Austin Development Board. He is past chair of the Texas Business Hall of Fame.

Dedman wrote and published Our Star Service Journey in 1998 and compiled two anthologies of quotes, Thoughts on a Purposeful Life and A Journey of Life.

He and his wife, Rachael Redeker Dedman, and their two children reside in Dallas.