Tanner Dobbs

 

Current Job:
Associate Consultant, Bain & Company

Major: Finance (Arabic Minor)

College: University of Texas

ServeHere Internship: Mobile Loaves & Fishes

Tanner - resized rectangle cropUpon encountering Tanner’s resume you might check the boxes so quickly that you’re not sure who should be interviewing whom. Tip-top grades. Speaks multiple languages. Leadership roles on and off campus. Diverse international experiences. Top-tier internships. Contributed 100% of his college tuition and expenses. Check, check, check!

But all resumes fall short of defining a person, and it’s in the personal encounter with Tanner when you recognize there is something special going on here. Immediately you sense this is a highly relational person and natural leader – and you understand how those achievements ended up on the resume. While carrying a level of intensity that is often a hallmark of high-achievers, Tanner’s strong faith, disarming personality and deep interest in the person across the table sets him up to be a gifted leader, and the perfect fit for ServeHere.

Tanner shepherds others well and he actively used this spiritual gift to minister to his campus peers in small groups and through YoungLife. For two years Tanner co-led College Life at UT, the on-campus program that equips hundreds of college students to lead YoungLife groups in nearly 50 area middle schools and high schools. One summer he even went overseas with YoungLife where he led conflict resolution training sessions for 250 Palestinian and Israeli youth.

Somehow Tanner has garnered a level of experience helping in the fight for justice in the developing world that far belies his age. Working with a children’s home in India, Tanner led initiatives to acquire land and obtain custody and funding for 50 orphans. In the United Arab Emirates, he worked with a non-profit to enhance the working conditions in five labor camps housing over 30,000 migrant workers. In the summer before his sophomore year, Tanner worked in the Middle East helping coordinate the distribution of relief supplies to Syrian refugees through four non-profit organizations.

All of Tanner’s experiences in complex and culturally challenging environments prepared him well for the ServeHere program and his internship developing the business plan for the Inn at Community First, the planned housing community for homeless people created by Mobile Loaves and Fishes. The inn is designed to house overnight visitors from church groups and the community and, most importantly, to create experiences that connect these guests with their formerly homeless brothers and sisters who are now living in the village. Tanner worked with the Innkeeper and the Chief Operating Officer of Mobile Loaves & Fishes to come up with plans, policies, and financial models that helped clarify how the original vision for the inn would be pragmatically put into practice. He also helped establish the key operating metrics that need to be achieved for the inn to be self-sustaining.

"For most of my life I’ve struggled with whether I should work in a non-profit or for profit entity. ServeHere was my opportunity to dig deep and seek the Lord’s wisdom for answering such a question. By the end of the ServeHere program not only did I find the answers I was looking for, but I also felt like God had reframed my perspective concerning work entirely."

While Tanner’s longer-term vocational interests skew toward entrepreneurial pursuits, he focused his search for post-graduate employment on roles in organizations that would rapidly contribute to his personal development. Tanner was the President of UT’s Management Consulting Association, so he knew that top tier consulting organizations could provide this kind of developmental accelerant. A previous summer internship at Bain & Company confirmed that this prestigious organization was a great fit, and Tanner accepted an offer to work as an associate consultant.

This exciting role at Bain means that Tanner and his fiancée Zoë, a banking analyst for JPMorgan Chase, are starting their careers and their lifelong journey together in Houston. Zoë is from Houston, so the couple is enjoying being around family as they prepare for their upcoming wedding. While new jobs and wedding plans keep them plenty busy, Tanner and Zoë also love connecting with their crew of Texas Exes who have relocated to Houston. Most recently they’ve committed to a church plant called 7 Mile Road where they are active in a house church and serve in the children’s ministry.

 

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