MBA | Graduation

Convocation Speaker

Robert B. Rowling, Owner, TRT Holdings, Inc.


Robert B. Rowling is the owner and chairman of TRT Holdings, Inc., a diversified holding company with interests in energy, hotels, financial services and fitness. Among the subsidiary companies which TRT controls are Tana Exploration Company, Gold’s Gym International, and Omni Hotels &Resorts. Tana Exploration is an upstream exploration and production company focused in the Gulf of Mexico and Louisiana state waters. Gold’s Gym owns and franchises more than700 fitness facilities around the world. Omni Hotels & Resorts is a luxury hotel brand comprised of 60 hotels and resorts across North America. 

Rowling attended the U.S. Air Force Academy and graduated with honors from The University of Texas at Austin in 1976 with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. In 1979, Rowling received his Juris Doctor with honors from the Southern Methodist University School of Law.

Rowling currently serves on the national board of Young Life and the board of Southwestern Medical Foundation, and previously served on The University of Texas System Board of Regents and as chairman of UTIMCO, which manages the $25 billion U.T. endowment funds.  In 2003, Rowling was the recipient of the SMU Dedman Law School Distinguished Alumni Award and was inducted into the Texas Business Hall of Fame. In 2005, he was inducted into both The University of Texas’ McCombs School of Business Hall of Fame and the All-American Wildcatters for his achievements in the oil & gas industry. Rowling was inducted as a UT Austin Distinguished Alumni in November 2013.

Page last updated: 5/1/2014