Matt Haynie '03
Senior Counsel, American Petroleum Institute
BA 2003, Rice University
MLitt 2005, University of St Andrews
JD 2008, George Washington University
As a student at Rice, Matt Haynie was Student Association president and received both the Rice Outstanding Senior Award and Will Rice’s Gilbert Cuthbertson Service Award. After earning a B.A. in 2003, he was a Rotary Foundation Ambassadorial Scholar to the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, where he earned a master of letters in Shakespeare studies. In 2008, Matt earned a J.D. from George Washington University, where he was awarded the GW Alumni Association Prize.
Matt's alumni volunteer work has included serving on the Washington, D.C., alumni planning committee, through which he has helped coordinate numerous events. He also interviews prospective students for Rice Alumni Volunteers for Admission, co-chaired his five- and 10-year reunion giving committees, served on the Rice Centennial Commission and was an ARA Board member. He currently serves on the Rice Annual Fund Steering Committee and Rice's Initiative for Students Commission.
Matt is senior counsel for the American Petroleum Institute (API) where he provides legal advice on a variety of oil and gas industry issues. Before joining API, Matt was an attorney at an international law firm in D.C. and served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Clayton Greene Jr. on the highest state court in Maryland.
What have you found to be most rewarding about serving on the ARA Board?
I could point to so many different things, but most rewarding for me has been our work to make sure that current Rice students are ready to be engaged Rice alumni. We have a lot more to do, but we've made huge progress in showing students that their involvement as alumni is critical to a strong Rice network. We've helped the Student Association set up their Future Alumni Committee, built and refined the annual Ring Celebration, and worked with the university on the new Sallyportal networking portal. I feel confident that this work is going to pay big dividends for the entire Rice community.
What is your favorite “Only at Rice” memory or story?
I always think of college theatre as being "Only at Rice." I have so many great memories that I can't point to just one favorite. I was involved with shows all over campus, from the Baker commons to game rooms, dining rooms and basements. I had the chance to perform with a few people who went on to be professional actors, but more often with future engineers, scientists and doctors. As a director, I got to manage a staff, work with a budget and coordinate with college government. College theatre is a great example of how many chances Rice students have to try new things and learn leadership skills in surprising ways.
If you could give one piece of advice to Rice students, what would it be?
Take advantage of all the amazing opportunities that Rice gives you. You may never have so many chances to try things that you never thought you'd try, learn from some of the most brilliant people in the world and make a real difference through a wide variety of leadership roles. At the same time, don't forget to take time to relax and really enjoy living on a beautiful campus, in an exciting city, with some of the best friends you'll ever have. You'll be a Rice alum out in the real world soon, and Rice prepares you for when that day comes. In the meantime, enjoy the incredible experience of being a Rice student!