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Meyer Lecture

James R. Jones2009 Lecturer

Ambassador James R. Jones
Manta, Phelps & Phillips, LLP

"Diversity and Culture in Global Business"

Mr. James R. Jones' practice focuses on international trade, investment and commerce, business-government relations and financial services. A former U.S. Ambassador and Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Mr. Jones has also worked extensively with global distribution and marketing organizations targeting Latin America, Asia and the Middle East.

Mr. Jones currently provides business development advice and consulting for clients, primarily in Mexico and Latin America. For example, he provides strategic advice to Toyota and assisted them to enter the automobile market in Mexico. He works with energy firms such as Williams and ConocoPhillips in Mexico, Venezuela and Ecuador. He represented MetLife in its purchase of a privatized Mexican insurance company, as well as a U.S.-Mexico joint venture to build a water treatment project in Mexico. He also is assisting a U.S. developer establish projects in Mexico and a Class I U.S. railroad with transportation investments in Mexico and Panama. Additionally, Mr. Jones counsels clients on both business and government strategies in the U.S.

Prior to joining Manatt, he served as U.S. Ambassador to Mexico (1993-1997), where he was very successful in his leadership during the Mexican peso crisis, the passage and implementation of NAFTA and in developing new, cooperative efforts to combat drug trafficking. He also assisted U.S. businesses with commercial ventures in Mexico.

Mr. Jones' previous experience also includes the position of President at Warnaco International, as well as Chairman and CEO of the American Stock Exchange in New York (1989-1993). During his tenure at AMEX, listings, revenues and market share increased. As a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Oklahoma (1973-1987), he was Chairman of the House Budget Committee and a ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Committee, where he was active in tax, international trade, Social Security and health care policy.

Mr. Jones was only 28 when President Lyndon Johnson selected him as Appointments Secretary, the position presently entitled Chief of Staff. He was the youngest person in history to hold this position.