Bonham, Texas (July 8, 2014) -- Pete Geren, a former member of Congress from Ft. Worth and former Secretary of the Army has been elected Chairman of the Sam Rayburn Foundation, replacing long-time Chairman, Dee Kelly, a native of Bonham and attorney in Ft. Worth, who was a one-time clerk for Mr. Rayburn when he was in law school in Washington.
The Sam Rayburn Foundation, a charitable trust, was formed in October of 1949 in Bonham, Texas to house Mr. Rayburnís papers and was also used for other educational purposes. The Foundation was started with a $10,000.00 gift from Mr. Rayburn, who had received the money from an award from Collierís Magazine. The Sam Rayburn Library was acquired from the Rayburn Foundation by the University of Texas at Austin in 1991 and is currently operated by the Center of American History of the University of Texas System.
According to The University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO) the initial amount recorded for the Sam Rayburn Library Endowment in 1990 was $3 million. The initial gift from the Sam Rayburn Foundation included the property and contents of the Sam Rayburn Library located in Bonham, Fannin County, Texas. According to the 2013 annual report from UTIMCO, the current value of the Sam Rayburn Library Endowment is $5.2 million.
Geren is a former Democratic member of Congress from Ft. Worth. He retired after eight years of service and was appointed Acting Secretary of the Air Force in 2005 and Secretary of the Army in 2007. He currently serves as the Executive Director of the Sid Richardson Foundation in Ft. Worth.
Dee Kelly, who joined the Board in 1976, will continue to serve alongside other Trustees, including Congressman Ralph Hall, the longest serving member of the House of Representatives. Other Trustees include Dr. Don Carleton, Executive Director of Dolph Briscoe Center for American History in Austin, Sharron L. Cox, Secretary/Treasurer of Sam Rayburn Foundation and an attorney in Bonham Texas, Carmen Cole Craigo of Dallas, Texas and Cindy Kelly Barnes of Austin, Texas.