It is with deep sadness that we communicate that on Saturday, February 15, 2020, our beloved Chairman and CEO, John Blaisdell, passed away in his home in Houston unexpectedly but peacefully.
John was a man of exceptional integrity, spirit and a natural born leader. He was deeply committed to his family, local community and faith, and was a living example of kindness and compassion in all that he did for others. He truly believed in our Salient team—each and every one of us. He was our leader, but maybe even more importantly, he was our constant mentor and dear friend. No need was denied or left unattended—from helping to fund Salient families’ flood recovery efforts, to approving payments for medical procedures and hospital stays—John never said no to lending a hand to any member of our team. His door was always open, as was his heart.
John supported many meaningful causes and was forever an advocate and protector for those most in need. He supported homeless women and children by graciously contributing to Houston’s faith-based shelter Mission of Yahweh and DePelchin Children’s Center, which provides mental health, adoption and foster care services to children throughout Texas. He also loved and supported the arts as a generous donor and Board Trustee for the Houston Ballet.
John joined Salient as Chairman and CEO in 2002 and helped build the firm from the ground up. Prior to joining Salient in 2002, John was CEO of a large private investment holding company for a high-net-worth Texas family where he was responsible for managing the family’s $1 billion portfolio. He previously served as partner, president and COO of Leisure Management International (“LMI”), a Houston-based company owned in partnership with the Huizenga Family and other well-known Houston investors. Under his leadership, the company grew to become a global industry leader in the management of sports and entertainment facilities, specializing in the contract management, marketing, and operation of arenas, stadiums, convention centers and other public assembly facilities for both public and private clients. John advised high-net-worth families on sports franchise acquisitions and dispositions and municipal governments on lease negotiations with such franchises. LMI was sold to SMG, a joint venture of ARAMARK and the Pritzker family, in 2000.
John held various senior private, public and quasi-public positions in South Florida and the City of Miami, coordinating the development of more than $1 billion of private and public projects during his tenure, including large scale residential, commercial and entertainment projects.
He served on the board of managers of many public, private and charitable organizations in Florida, Texas and New Mexico. John received a bachelor of science from Barry University in 1983 and an MBA from the University of Miami in 1987.
John is survived by his daughters Megan Blaisdell Willis and Kaitlin Blaisdell, and his sisters Debbie Ahern, Linda Newman and Sandy Blaisdell.
A memorial service will be held for John on Saturday, February 22, 2020 at 5:00 pm CT at Heights Funeral Home (1317 Heights Blvd, Houston, TX 77008).
If you’d like to make a donation in John’s memory, donations can be directed in his name to: Mission of Yahweh, a faith-based shelter in Houston that supports homeless women and children, and DePelchin Children’s Center, which provides mental health, adoption and foster care services to children throughout Texas.
With gratitude and many thanks,
Contributions in memory of John Blaisdell may be sent to support The Mission of Yahweh Fund.
The Mission of Yahweh
The Mission of Yahweh has served homeless women and their children since 1961. The Mission of Yahweh not only gives food, clothing and shelter, but also is committed to helping residents to become self-sufficient, productive members of society. You can learn more about The Mission of Yahweh here.
If you would like to make a donation online or by check, please make it payable to the The Mission of Yahweh, note “In Memory of John Blaisdell” in the memo line of the check, and mail it to:
The Mission of Yahweh
If you have questions, please contact The Mission of Yahweh: 713-466-4785
Contributions in memory of John Blaisdell may be sent to DePelchin Children’s Center.
DePelchin Children’s Center
DePelchin Children’s Center is committed to meeting the needs of children as one of the largest providers of mental health, foster care and adoption services in Texas. You can learn more about the DePelchin Children’s Center here.
If you would like to make a donation online or by check, please make it payable to DePelchin Children’s Center, note “In Memory of John Blaisdell” in the memo line of the check and mail it to:
DePelchin Children’s Center
If you have any questions, please contact the Houston DePelchin Children’s Center: 713-730-2335