Genesys Works Houston Welcomes Former CEO of General Cable Corporation and TPC Group as New Board Member

October 8, 2020



Houston, Texas — Genesys Works Houston (GWH), a workforce development program that trains high school students in employability skills and connects them to paid internship opportunities with top Houston companies, announced today that Michael T. McDonnell has been elected to its board of directors.

Michael (Mike) T. McDonnell is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of General Cable Corporation, a global leader in design, development, manufacturing and marketing of copper, aluminum and fiber optic wire and cable products and systems for communications, energy and electrical markets. Prior to joining General Cable Corporation, McDonnell was Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of TPC Group, a leading producer of value-added products derived from petrochemical raw materials and long-standing Genesys Works partner. TPC Group has provided internship opportunities to 34 GWH young professionals from the Houston area. In 2013, McDonnell was a keynote speaker for GWH’s annual Breaking Through ceremony and has served as an active member of the strategic planning committee for several years prior to his election to the board.

“Mike often took the time to host our TPC interns for one-on-one lunches to share his career journey and offer professional advice,” said Katherine Taylor, Executive Director of GWH. “His leadership experience, deep business and community ties, and most importantly, his personal commitment to our mission, will help us scale our program to reach more deserving young people in Houston.”

With McDonnell’s addition, the GWH board is now made up of 19 individuals, representing the energy, engineering, finance, healthcare, consulting and real estate industries, who are responsible for providing leadership and oversight for carrying out the organization’s mission.

“Mike has been a strong champion for Genesys Works over the years and he is deeply committed to unlocking and developing the talent of our young professionals,” said Ray Messer, GWH Board Chair. “We feel very fortunate to have him working with us in a more formal capacity.”

McDonnell currently serves as a board member of Ignatian Solidarity Network, a national organization whose mission is to network, educate and form advocates for social justices animated by the spirituality of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Previously, he has served on the boards of American Chemistry Council, Theater Under the Stars, Freedom House and Make-A-Wish Foundation, New Jersey Chapter.

Since 2002, Genesys Works has launched the careers of hundreds Houston-area high school students in tech and business operations—most of whom are Black or Hispanic, first-generation American and first-time college goers, helping to bridge the gap between talent and opportunity and creating a more diverse, inclusive and equitable workforce.

To learn more about Genesys Works or to donate, visit:


About Genesys Works

Genesys Works provides pathways to career success for high school students in underserved communities through skills training, meaningful work experiences, and impactful relationships. Our program consists of 8 weeks of technical and professional skills training, a paid year-long corporate internship, college and career coaching, and alumni support to and through college. Our goal is to move more students out of poverty and into professional careers, creating a more productive and diverse workforce in the process. Since its founding in 2002, Genesys Works has grown to serve more than 4,000 students annually in Houston, Chicago, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York City, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Washington’s National Capital Region. To learn more, visit, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

McDonnell joins the GWH Board of Directors below:

Raymond (Ray) Messer – Chairman Emeritus, Walter P Moore (Chair)

Adam Barth – Partner, McKinsey & Company

Erskine Black – VP, Occupier Solutions, Transwestern Commercial Services

Jesse Carrillo – Senior VP & Chief Information Officer, Hines

Linda Castaneda – Southwest Region Advisory Managing Partner, EY

Marian Davenport – Former Executive Director, Genesys Works Houston

Robert Flexon – Former President & CEO, Dynegy Inc.

Mary Beth Gracy – Managing Director, Accenture

Shachella James – VP of Technology Operation, CenterPoint Energy

Gene Janiszewski – CEO, Paradigm Group, Inc.

Evan Kirchen – VP of E&C Atlantic-Gulf, Williams Companies 

Jerry Lasco – Founder, President and CEO, Lasco Enterprises, LLC

Elisabeth Nash – Senior Vice President, Operations Services, SCI

Susanna Sabbagh – VP, BP Account, Halliburton

Scott Silvas – Texas Market President, Fifth Third Bank

Elizabeth (Liz) Sweigart – Partner, PwC

Katherine Taylor – Executive Director, Genesys Works Houston

David Williams – CEO, Genesys Works Houston

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