Tony Petrello is one of the wealthiest citizens of Houston, TX who earns millions each year as CEO of Nabors Industries. But what many people don’t know is what he’s been doing on the side for Houston’s healthcare providers including the Texas Children’s Hospital. The hospital has a first-class neurological research center that Tony Petrello has been involved with funding, and he has very personal reasons for choosing this particular area of philanthropy.
Tony Petrello said that his life changed dramatically when his daughter Carena was born. She had an illness that didn’t take her life but made it so that she would be confined to a wheelchair and need assistance to make it in life. Petrello switched his focus from his career to his daughter who he tried desperately to find treatment for her cerebral palsy but was told there was none. He had a difficult period of his life stressing over this news, but he then decided to make it his new philanthropy initiative to donate over $1 million to finding a cure for brain disorders.
In his quest to defeat cerebral palsy, Tony Petrello crossed paths with a couple who had made millions starting their own company but then dedicated their profits to helping the Texas Children’s Hospital. The couple was Dan and Jan Duncan who neurological research center was named for, and the Petrellos and Duncans decided to host a gala to raise funds for brand new neurology research technology. Tony Petrello gave $7 million at this fundraiser, and though the cure has not yet been found, he is hopeful that it’s gained attention from others in the millionaire and billionaire crowd.
Tony Petrello has been at Nabors Industries since 1991 when he was chosen to be chief operating officer of the company. Prior to that he was a managing partner of the Baker & McKenzie law firm’s New York City office for which he practiced corporate law for 13 years with specialties in tax compliance, securities transactions and other financial regulations. Petrello previously was an advanced mathematics major who despite coming from a lower income family earned a scholarship to Yale University where he got both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees. He has won several recognitions for his success at Nabors Industries including highest-paid CEO in 2013 when his total base salary, stocks, equities and bonuses reached $68.7 million for that year. He also was present for the welcoming home of Broadway star Tommy Tune.