Billy Joe ‘Red’ McCombs
Born: 927 in Spur, near Lubbock
Education: Attended Southwestern University and the University of Texas but did not graduate.
Made his first money: Selling cars in Corpus Christi; he opened his first dealership at age 25. Forbes magazine now says he’s worth $ .3 billion.
The McCombs empire: Owner of the Red McCombs Automotive group; co-founder of Clear Channel Communications; former owner of the Minnesota Vikings, San Antonio Spurs and Denver Nuggets; interests in real estate, energy and startups in a variety of industries.
In Central Texas, he owns real estate and has invested in local startups and venture capital funds. He also invested in UT’s new venture to sell water in bottles shaped like the UT Tower.
His philanthropy: In 2000, McCombs donated $50 million to the University of Texas, which named its business school in his honor. In 2005, he donated $30 million to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He is a loyal supporter of UT athletics. He also has donated to Southwestern, where he and wife Charline met.
Family: He and Charline, married since 950, have three daughters. They live in San Antonio.