In a city known for its vibrant community spirit and commitment to giving back, there are individuals whose selfless dedication shines above the rest. Today, we are thrilled to announce that Tomi and Pete Winstead have been selected as the recipients of the prestigious Austin Gives 2023 Bobby Jenkins Philanthropic Leadership award. This remarkable couple has dedicated themselves to serving the greater Austin community, making an indelible impact on countless lives.
Pete Winstead, the founding shareholder of Winstead PC, embarked on his professional journey in the field of federal taxation. With time, he expanded his expertise to provide invaluable guidance to early-stage and start-up companies, offering mentorship on financial backing, management procurement, and legal matters. Pete's career reached new heights when he played a pivotal role in the initial public offering (IPO) of Dell Computer in 1988, leaving an indelible mark on Austin's tech landscape.
Beyond his professional achievements, Pete's commitment to the community has been nothing short of extraordinary. In 1997, he was appointed by Governor Bush to become the first chair of the Texas Turnpike Authority, demonstrating his leadership acumen. Pete has served as chairman on numerous influential boards, including the Austin Chamber, Greater Austin Economic Development Corporation, the Real Estate Council, United Way, St. Edward's University, the Greater Austin Crime Commission, and KLRU Public Television. He has served as President of the Austin Area Research Organization, President of Seton’s President’s Council, and chairman of the 50 million capital campaign for the Dell Seton Medical Center at UT.
His extensive involvement in civic, political, and philanthropic matters has earned him countless accolades and recognition. Among his distinguished honors are being named one of the 25 most influential people in Austin and receiving the esteemed "Austinite of the Year" award from the Chamber in 2004. Additionally, he received the 2nd "Jurisprudence Award" in Austin from the Anti-Defamation League, further solidifying his reputation as a community leader.
Tomi Winstead, a remarkable philanthropist in her own right, has dedicated her time and efforts to various organizations aimed at improving the lives of those in need. She has served on the advisory boards of Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade and Palmer Drug Abuse Program, demonstrating her commitment to the well-being of Austin's youth. Tomi has also been actively involved in vital organizations such as CASA, Austin Family House, Adopt-a-School, and KLRU Public Television, where she served on the board.
Tomi's dedication to serving her community has extended far and wide, as she has tirelessly volunteered for fundraising initiatives benefiting organizations like the Boy Scouts, KLRU Public Television, Safe Place, the Anti-Defamation League, and Caritas of Austin. She is a past chair of the board of Ronald McDonald Charities of Central Texas, an organization that continues to be near and dear to her heart. One of her proudest commitments was when she co-chaired the 9.5 million capital campaign to build the new House on the Dell Children’s Hospital campus. On the fifth anniversary of the opening of the new House, she refurbished the room she and her husband Pete sponsored there in memory of their son, Joey. Tomi continues to serve on the advisory board and is currently serving as honorary co-chair of the 30 million expansion campaign.
The impact of Tomi and Pete Winstead's philanthropy stretches beyond their individual contributions. As founding members of KLRU's Producer's Circle major donor program, they have played a significant role in supporting public television and its invaluable programming. Moreover, they co-chaired the memorable 50th Anniversary of Public Television KLRU event, leaving an enduring mark on the organization.
Over the years, the Winsteads' remarkable dedication and unwavering commitment to serving the Greater Austin community have garnered widespread recognition. In 2002, the Boy Scouts of America awarded them a Distinguished Citizen's Award – the only time the award has ever been given to a couple rather than an individual – which is a testament to their outstanding leadership and service. In 2017, Caritas of Austin honored Tomi and Pete with the Harvey Penick Award for "Excellence in the Game of Life," recognizing their exemplary embodiment of compassion and generosity. Together, they gave the 2021 commencement at Austin Community College.
Tomi and Pete celebrated their 44th wedding anniversary last April. They have 5 children and 10 grandchildren.
The Winsteads will be honored at the 2023 Austin Gives Awards luncheon on August 29th at the Four Seasons Hotel. The annual luncheon celebrates the positive impact made by generous businesses who dedicate time, talent, and/or treasure to the nonprofit community. Registration and sponsorship information can be found here.