Laura and John Arnold are Co-Chairs of the Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF). LJAF’s core objective is to produce substantial, widespread and lasting reforms that will maximize opportunities and minimize injustice in our society. LJAF’s strategy is to systematically examine areas of society in which barriers to human progress and achievement exist, and to then apply a rigorous, comprehensive and entrepreneurial approach to these areas, considering all possible strategies, tactics and resource levels and teams (including existing players) to effect solutions. LJAF’s current areas of focus include criminal justice, public accountability initiatives, research integrity and education.
The Arnolds signed The Giving Pledge and have committed to devote the majority of their wealth, time and resources to philanthropy. In addition to their work through LJAF, the couple formed Action Now Initiative, a section 501 (c)(4) entity that advocates for specific public policies. They also make personal charitable donations to a wide variety of organizations and progressive causes.
Until late 2005, Ms. Arnold was Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Cobalt International Energy, L.P. in Houston, Texas. Prior to that, she was a mergers and acquisitions attorney at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen and Katz in New York, New York.
Ms. Arnold is a member of the New York bar. She has a J.D. from the Yale Law School, an M.Phil in European Studies from the University of Cambridge and a B.A., from Harvard College. After law school, Ms. Arnold clerked for the Hon. Judith W. Rogers in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
Ms. Arnold is an Adjunct Professor of Management at the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Management at Rice University, where she is also a Trustee. She is also a member of the Board of Directors of Robin Hood and a Trustee of Baylor College of Medicine.
Until 2012, Mr. Arnold was founder and CEO of Centaurus Energy, a hedge fund primarily focused on trading energy commodities. Prior to founding Centaurus, he held various positions within Enron’s Wholesale Division, including Head of Natural Gas Derivatives. In May 2012, Mr. Arnold announced his retirement from Centaurus Energy and his intention to wind down the fund. Mr. Arnold holds a B.A. from Vanderbilt University, and he is a member of that university’s Board of Trustees.
Mr. Arnold was born in Dallas, and Ms. Arnold was born in Puerto Rico. They live in Houston and have three children.