Former Marine Clint Weber named executive director of Advancement Foundation

by Matthew Smith

North Texas Catholic

April 3, 2020

Clint WeberClint Weber
Clint Weber (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

FORT WORTH — On March 16, just as fears of COVID-19 spread kicked into high gear, Clint Weber started his new role as executive director of the Advancement Foundation for the Diocese of Fort Worth. Unfortunate timing some might say, but not Weber.

“There’s no perfect time to ever start anything,” Weber said. “But, to the extent that we are in extraordinary times, I’m just honored and privileged to be here. If I could’ve picked a different time to come into the job, I can honestly say I wouldn’t.”

Challenging times, Weber said, both make life more interesting and amplify the Advancement Foundation’s necessity.

Founded in 2009 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the Advancement Foundation operates as a separate entity yet integral partner with the diocese. The Foundation oversees the fundraising, stewardship, and asset protection needs of the diocese and serves to educate and motivate parishioners on the importance of supporting their diocese. Through those guidelines, the Foundation helps support diocesan parishes, schools, ministries, and other needs.

Weber, 48, earned a history degree from Texas A&M University and an MBA from Texas Christian University, after which he worked as an analyst at Corbett Capital and later as president and CEO of Gruene Anolyte, a Fort Worth biotech firm.

“I don’t think there’s much difference,” Weber said of the corporate compared to the nonprofit world. “The only thing different about a nonprofit are several of the tax and business rules. For me both are about mission. If you make widgets, the mission is making widgets. Here the mission is Jesus Christ, His Church, and supporting that, which we do by putting a plan together to raise money, then being very transparent about where that money goes.

“That happens through teamwork and networking, working with others who are passionate about the mission,” he continued. “Then those resources are funneled back into the diocese as needed in accordance with Bishop [Michael] Olson’s direction, plan, and vision.”

Weber lived all over the world growing up — his father was a Marine — but always considered Texas home. Weber describes himself a product of Catholic schooling.

“That’s where I believe I really, in addition to my parents, learned my values that helped me become who I am,” Weber said.

The military played a role as well.

“I love airplanes and wanted to fly the best, the fastest ones,” Weber said of his decision to follow his father’s footsteps into the Marines.

Weber added that although his grandfather died in the early 1970s, stories of his career as a Naval aviator during World War II loomed large throughout his childhood, as did the fact that his grandparents were initial parishioners of an Abilene Catholic church in the mid-1950s.

“So why leave private equity, private enterprise, to come work for the Church?” Weber said. “Well, you do that because you’re inspired, you want to make a difference.”

The separation between the Foundation and the diocese allows, among other things, both to focus on what they’re best at doing, Weber said.

“The operation of the diocese, all those things that have to be done on a daily basis to support the Kingdom of God here on earth, in and of itself is extremely difficult,” Weber said. “You’re talking 90 some parishes, 26,000 something square miles. So, it’s not unusual. You see this in private enterprise all the time, to create two organizations. One that oversees daily operation of the main organization and the other that functions around the idea of stewardship and management of the resources. Because those are two whole different skill sets. And if you have those independent of each other, they can focus on their core activities — the idea being you should see overall performance improvement in both.”

A classic country and rock fan, Weber joked that he knows he’s getting old because he doesn’t recognize most of the people making new music. Otherwise, he enjoys exercising, reading, and spending time with his wife Heather and daughter Betsy.

“This could potentially get me fired,” Weber said with a laugh when asked who he roots for if TCU plays A&M. “I think Fort Worth is the finest big city in Texas. That’s why I’m here and why I brought my family here. But I will never root against the Texas Aggies.”

With COVID-19 precautions precluding congregations from attending Mass throughout the diocese, Foundation members have stressed the importance of continued diocesan support via online, mail, or phone donations. With more individuals out of work and no collection baskets circulating, needs have increased urgently.

“One blessing I will say is that this has given us the opportunity to really brainstorm and think strategically about a lot of things,” Weber said.

Weber said that, as members of the Body of Christ, we’re all called to do our part.

“I’m a cradle Catholic and grew up thinking it wasn’t good enough just to go to Mass Sunday,” Weber said. “I think we as Catholics, when we’re called, need to answer because we make the Church better that way.”

Clint Weber

FORT WORTH — On March 16, just as fears of COVID-19 spread kicked into high gear, Clint Weber started his new role as executive director of the Advancement Foundation for the Diocese of Fort Worth. Unfortunate timing some might say, but not Weber.

Published (until 4/3/2031)