The Nation’s Largest African American Video Oral History Collection Mobile search icon Mobile close search icon

Search Results

Advanced Biography Search
Mobile navigation icon Close mobile navigation icon

Dr. Kneeland Youngblood

Physician, businessman, and presidential appointee Dr. Kneeland Youngblood, was born in Galena Park, Texas, on December 13, 1955. At the age of fourteen, Youngblood was working as a page on the floor of the Texas State Legislature; after graduating from high school, he attended Princeton University, earning his B.A. degree in political science in 1978. While at Princeton, Youngblood spent time studying abroad, attending both Warnborough College in Oxford, England, and the University of Stockholm in Sweden from 1976 to 1977. In 1978, only a few months shy of his graduation, Youngblood took part in a sit-in at Nassau Hall with two hundred other students to protest Princeton’s investments in South African businesses, risking the threat of expulsion. Youngblood and the other students were not expelled, and in the autumn of 1978, he began attending the University of Texas Health Science Center, from which he earned his M.D. in 1982. During his studies at the University of Texas, Youngblood traveled to Egypt, where he studied at the Cairo University Medical School.

After earning his M.D., Youngblood moved to New York City, where he held a surgical internship with Columbia University for a year; in 1983, he moved and began his two-year residency in emergency medicine at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. After completing his residency, Youngblood returned to Texas, taking a position as an emergency physician at the Medical Center of Plano, a Dallas suburb. Youngblood remained in Plano until he left the medical profession in 1997, at which time he co-founded and became the managing partner of Pharos Capital Group, LLC., a private equity firm that invests in technology, business services, and health care companies, and manages more than $200 million in investments.

In 1993, Youngblood was appointed by President Clinton to serve on the board of directors of the United States Enrichment Corporation, a government-owned corporation that provided nuclear fuel to countries hoping to utilize nuclear power. Youngblood remained at the United States Enrichment Corporation until 1998, at one point traveling with a delegation to South Africa, where he met with both F.W. DeKlerk and Nelson Mandela. Youngblood's time in South Africa prompted him to write an essay entitled From Sit-In to Soweto, detailing his experiences as a young man protesting South African policies dealing with working with the country. During his tenure with the Clinton Administration, Youngblood was also a part of First Lady Hillary Clinton’s Health Care Task Force.

Youngblood served on the board of directors of numerous corporations and organizations, including the Teacher Retirement System of the State of Texas, an $85 billion pension fund, and the boards of AMR Investments; Starwood Hotels & Lodging, Incorporated; Burger King, Incorporated; and The Gap, Incorporated. Youngblood also served as a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Accession Number

A2004.219

Sex

Male

Interview Date

10/28/2004

Last Name

Youngblood

Maker Category
Schools

Princeton University

University of Texas, Southwestern Medical Center

First Name

Kneeland

Birth City, State, Country

Galena Park

HM ID

YOU03

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Texas

Favorite Vacation Destination

St. Petersburg, Russia

Favorite Quote

What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Texas

Interview Description
Birth Date

12/13/1955

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Dallas

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Short Description

Investment executive and emergency physician Dr. Kneeland Youngblood (1955 - ) worked as an emergency physician in the Dallas area before leaving the medical profession to co-found and become the managing partner of Pharos Capital Group, LLC. In addition to his activities with Pharos Capital Group, Youngblood was appointed by President Clinton to serve on the board of directors of the United States Enrichment Corporation, served as a part of First Lady Hillary Clinton’s Health Care Task Force, and sat on the boards of directors of numerous corporations and organizations.

Employment

Texas House of Representatives

Columbia University

Emory University School of Medicine

Medical Center of Plano

Pharos Capital Group, LLC.

White House

Favorite Color

Black

Timing Pairs
0,0:6254,59:8056,89:12104,181:26710,391:29491,432:32526,450:32814,455:33966,484:35766,508:39222,580:39726,589:40302,599:41310,630:41958,640:51174,880:55278,984:55638,990:73960,1179:75235,1200:76595,1222:84330,1424:84840,1431:96439,1623:106374,1825:108453,1916:111764,1988:112226,1995:117942,2071:118434,2083:118762,2088:119992,2100:128438,2246:134290,2303:139109,2424:140926,2495:141242,2500:150959,2721:157606,2771:158932,2805:159556,2815:161506,2868:165404,2916:165860,2921:179660,3099$0,0:7800,105:8280,111:9048,121:18980,279:22290,345:24040,369:35616,561:36056,570:52944,809:53736,819:58032,863:64988,1021:65876,1053:67208,1075:69280,1118:71278,1184:79122,1389:79418,1394:79714,1399:86493,1446:88152,1498:93603,1690:94077,1697:99363,1747:109164,1921:111990,1928
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Dr. Kneeland Youngblood's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his maternal family's medical careers

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his maternal family's musical connections

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his mother's education

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his parents meeting

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood speaks on his father's family and the tradition of hard work

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood describes his childhood neighborhood of Galena Park, Texas

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recalls the sights, sounds, and smells of growing up in Galena Park, Texas

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his early exposure to government and international affairs

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recalls attending Fidelity Elementary School in Galena Park, Texas

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his childhood hobbies

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood his experience in the newly integrated Galena Middle School in Galena Park, Texas

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers on his time as a page in the Texas Legislature

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood reflects on his experience in Greece in 1972

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his time at Jesuit College Preparatory School in Dallas, Texas

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his time at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his political activism at Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his political activism at Princeton University, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers deciding between a legal or medical career

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers entering the University of Texas Health Science Center in Dallas, Texas

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recalls his trip to Egypt in 1981

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recalls attending Christmas Mass at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, Israel in 1981

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recounts his experience as an African American traveling in Egypt

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his career in emergency medicine

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood outlines his transition from medicine to political fundraising

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers his successful fundraiser for U.S. Senator Bill Bradley

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood explains how his political fundraising led to Texas Governor Ann Richards appointing him to her tax policy committee

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers how his time in government prompted his business career

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood explains the challenges facing black-owned businesses

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about serving on the board of directors for the United States Enrichment Corporation

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood remembers becoming a board member for American Airlines in Dallas, Texas

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood recalls his time on the board of directors of Starwood Hotels and Resorts

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about the African American community's lack of access to capital

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood explains the risks and payoffs of private equity

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood describes a business venture he hopes will benefit the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood explains the basics of private equity investing

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Dr. Kneegood Youngblood talks about how to succeed in private equity investing

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood speaks about the opportunities for young African Americans in business

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his wife, Dr. Sharon Youngblood, and their children

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his parents' support for his success

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about his interest in supporting political candidates

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood offers advice for those considering a career in finance

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Dr. Kneeland Youngblood narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

7$3

DATitle
Dr. Kneeland Youngblood outlines his transition from medicine to political fundraising
Dr. Kneeland Youngblood talks about serving on the board of directors for the United States Enrichment Corporation
Transcript
So you were an emergency physician through nineteen what?$$Nineteen eighty-six [1986] to around 1996.$$Okay all right so that's a (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Approximately ten years.$$All right, but you didn't stay, you didn't plan to stay in medicine and you didn't.$$Well I was actually pretty happy you know I was you know married, I have six kids and was on way to you know the big house, the mortgage the you know all the things that, that most professionals get into. But again I got involved in politics 'cause I wanted to give back to the community and I found that very few people of color had been involved in the financial side of politics. And I wanted to make a difference politically and so I focused on the finance part of it. Started with a guy named Bill Bradley who was then a senator out of New Jersey was running for re-election, got to know them, him through a Princeton [University, Princeton, New Jersey] alumni, organization and said look, I'd like to raise money for you. And if you tell that any politician they're like please sign me up, and so I had the good fortune of hosting for him a fund raiser here in Texas around 1986 and '87 [1987], which was enormously successful and--$$Now Bill Bradley he was a basketball star at Princeton, star in the NBA [National Basketball Association] with the [New York] Knicks and also I mean as a senator from New Jersey, he seemed like a, a pretty strong candidate for the presidency at one point, right?$$Yes, and that was in part precisely the reason why I supported him and, and my colleagues supported him, in that it was an investment in the future. One wanted to get involved and number two wanted to be involved with people who were sensitive. And he was in the middle of the road guy, very thoughtful guy, we knew he had a sensitivity for some of the issues, we had, sort of within the African American community, but, but in the broader American community, and someone who was respected having been a Rhodes Scholar, having been captain of the [1964 Summer] Olympic[s] [Tokyo, Japan] team, won a gold medal, NBA, All-Star, won World Championship twice, again United States senator. This is a guy who had you know broad network of lots of accomplishments and still was very progressive in terms of his thinking. So myself, group of friends we starting raising money for him here originally in Texas, that was very successful. Then you know others raised money for him in Chicago [Illinois], [HistoryMaker] John Rogers [Jr.] having come down, come down to the event we did in, in Dallas [Texas], he then did for him in Chicago. Friends we did for him in New York and again, he became very good friends, he's godfather for one of my kids. But along the way then Ann Richards called said look you're raising all this money for some guy for New Jersey, I wanna run for governor of Texas, will you help me? And Ann Richards is a very charming woman, and, and very savvy, I sat down, met with her and how could I say no. So, you, know I signed up to help her and began to raise money for her to run for governor.$I'd been very successful in fundraising politically and I knew that if I set my mind to it, I also could raise money for myself and for businesses that I was interested in terms of private equity. So I knew you know a couple things I needed to do, I needed to do improve my own personal expertise in business and number two put together a good team of people. On the personal side, again I've been involved in politics and so the president, the United States president, [President William Jefferson] Bill Clinton and the U.S. Senate confirmed me to go on the board of directors of a company we formed in 1993 to supply low-level uranium to utilities around the world, called the United States Enrichment Corporation [Bethesda, Maryland]. Why I wanted to do that was for the experience of being involved in corporate boards and you know being engaged in a very important transaction. We formed this company in 1993 supplied low-level uranium, to utilities around the world. We put together 80 percent of the domestic market, 40 percent of the world market; negotiated to purchase the nuclear weapons grade uranium from the former Soviet Union [Russia] to de-enrich it, sell it to utilities. And then we took it public, we've had $2 billion (unclear) offer so that experience that capital marks experience was very important to my own maturity in terms of business. And yet there are only five people on the board of directors, the original board was a guy named [William] Bill Rainer who was chairman of the board, founded a company by the name of Greenwich Capital [Markets, Inc.], Margaret [H.] Greene was the highest ranking woman at BellSouth [Corporation], Greta [Joy] Dicus who became chairman of [U.S.] Nuclear Regulatory Commission, myself and a guy by the name of Frank Zarb who was former energy secretary [sic.], but also former CEO of Smith Barney, and also former CEO of NASDAQ, so some very important people.