I was born and raised in Texas. As far back as high school I wanted to work in finance, largely because I had mentors, including my father, who worked in the energy industry, which at the time was a bit more volatile and less prosperous than it is these days. In 1989, after graduating from the University of Texas, I was hired by Paine Webber in New York and worked in its mortgage-backed securities division.

Soon after, the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) started taking over bankrupt banks and selling their assets. I worked in a group that would bid on them. The RTC would send us big magnetic tapes of loan files and I'd go through them and often identify loans from assets near and around where I grew up in Texas.

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