John Phelan’s relationship with LSE goes back to 1985 when he studied economics and international relations on the General Course – LSE's study abroad programme - which he undertook while studying for his BA in Economics and Political Science at the Southern Methodist University in Texas. He received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1990.
John is Co-Founding Partner and Chief Investment Officer of MSD Partners and MSD Capital, a private investment firm established in 1998 to exclusively manage the capital of Michael Dell, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Dell Technologies, and his family.
John serves on multiple advisory boards, including the Board of Trustees of the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Aspen Art Museum (Chairman), and the Spirit of America. He also serves on the Board of Dean's Advisors for the Harvard Business School, the Investment Committee for the SMU Endowment and LSE’s North American Advisory Board.
As longstanding and generous supporters of the School, John and his wife Amy have supported the US Centre’s popular public events lecture series and over 30 General Course, MSc, and PhD scholarship students at the School.
In April 2021, John gifted $10 million (USD) through the John and Amy Phelan Foundation to endow the US Center and to foster its commitment to outstanding scholarship, teaching and public engagement on US affairs.