Chris and Mike Mizell

Giving has become second nature to
Dr. Mike Mizell . . .
and he’d like others to become passionate about philanthropy, too.





The Self-Assured Philanthropist

Mike Mizell, DDS, is close to being in a class by himself—literally. He was one of only six people to have graduated in 1990 from the Advanced Education Program in Orthodontics at The University of Texas School of Dentistry at Houston. Almost immediately upon graduation from the prestigious and exclusive program, Dr. Mizell joined the UT Orthodontics Alumni Organization because he knew then—as he does now—that there is strength in numbers.

“Once a year, we have a drive to raise money to support the school, particularly the orthodontic program,” says Dr. Mizell. The alumni organization’s foundation helps purchase equipment the program needs for the clinic and provide financial support for the residents to attend educational seminars and conferences. The organization also provides funds to the faculty for professional development. Orthodontics, like any branch of science and medicine, is ever evolving, Dr. Mizell explains. “We need to help offset the expenses that help faculty members maintain their expertise.”

His active involvement in philanthropy from the get-go has given Dr. Mizell a calm certitude in his role of helping secure support for his alma mater, as well as for the entire UT System. “I feel very comfortable asking my colleagues to give to the school and to the profession. It’s become second nature to me.”

It helps, of course, that the UT System has such a large and significant footprint in Texas. Dr. Mizell is proud that a new university and two new medical schools will soon become part of the UT System family. He is enthusiastic about a new nursing school in Tyler. These projects are “sweet spots,” he says, and show how the UT System meets its responsibility to “answer the needs of the people in Texas.”

Although they live in Houston, Dr. Mizell and his wife, Chris, spend a lot of time at The University of Texas at Austin, where their son, Carter, and daughter, Caroline, are both students and where Dr. Mizell completed his undergraduate work (BBA, 1982). The Mizells have given generously to UT Austin over the years: they established the Chris and Mike Mizell Endowed Scholarship, which benefits the McCombs School of Business and have contributed to the Paul B. Woodruff Professorship supporting the School of Undergraduate Studies. In addition, they are members of the Texas Leadership Society, Texas Exes, President’s Associates and Littlefield Society.

Despite their obvious Longhorn pride, however, the Mizells are keenly aware that the UT System’s reach extends far beyond the 40 acres. So, they also established the Chris and Mike Mizell Chancellor’s Excellence Endowment to support the Chancellor’s initiatives and advance the mission of the UT System. The couple became members of the Chancellor’s Council Executive Committee in 2012 and, since that time, have had opportunities to visit other UT institutions and immerse themselves in the projects and initiatives that are unique to those institutions.

When the Mizells visited The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston in January 2013, for example, they came away even more passionate about the need to spread the word about the invaluable contributions UT faculty, staff and students make to Texas and the nation, every day. In doing so, the Mizells hope they will bring more advocates to the fold. “The more we learn about each of the UT institutions, the prouder we become about supporting the UT System,” says Dr. Mizell. “And we are driven to find people that share our commitment.”