Kevin J. Lilly was born at Bitburg Air Force Base in Germany. The son of a career military officer, he grew up in San Antonio where he attended Antonian College Preparatory School and Boys State. He received his B.B.A. from The University of Texas at Austin where he founded the Texas Wranglers, a men’s honorary organization, and served as president of the Business College Student Council.
Upon graduation, he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the United States Army, serving during the Persian Gulf War as a captain and earning the Army Achievement Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, The National Defense Medal, Reserve Component Achievement Medal (Texas Army National Guard), and Overseas Service Ribbon.
He received his M.B.A. from Southern Methodist University before joining Goldman Sachs and Company in New York as a vice president in the firm’s equities division. He moved to Morgan Stanley and Company as a principal and helped establish the firm’s Houston office. He has been published in The Journal of Commercial Bank Lending and the U.S. Army’s Armor Magazine.
In 2001, Lilly and three colleagues founded Avalon Advisors, LLC, an investment management firm in Houston. The firm manages over $3 billion dollars in assets and is one of the largest private investment firms in the southwestern United States.
Regent Lilly has served several charitable organizations in Texas and nationally, including the National World War II Museum (Trustee), the Houston Junior League Foundation, the West University Little League, the Houston Museum of Natural History and the Houston Symphony. An avid supporter of Houston’s sports franchises, he enjoys golf, fly-fishing, reading history, and coaching youth sports. He is married with three young children and is a member of St. Vincent De Paul Catholic Church in Houston.
Appointed to the Board by Governor Rick Perry, Lilly is chairman of The Texas State University System Foundation, a non-profit organization that supports and advances The Texas State University System, its colleges and universities.