General manager of the Houston Astros Jeff Luhnow '84 helped the Astros win their first-ever World Series title in 2017. Before joining the team in Houston, Luhnow served as vice president of scouting and player development for the St. Louis Cardinals since 2003. In that position, he oversaw nine minor league teams, international scouting and player development, and scouting for the amateur draft.
Luhnow graduated from the Wharton School of Business and earned an MBA from Northwestern University. He has pioneered the integration of data-based analysis into his teams' personnel decision-making processes, applying a classic business model to a professional sports team.
Luhnow worked as an engineer, a management consultant and a technology entrepreneur before he found his way to baseball. He said his career experience helped him develop skills he needs as a baseball executive and believes it is one of two things that differentiate him as a general manager. The other is his bicultural background and ability to speak both English and Spanish fluently. Luhnow was born and raised in Mexico City before he came to Webb.
"This is a very international game, and the largest population outside of Americans are players from Latin America whose first language is Spanish," Luhnow said. "So being able to communicate with them and understand where they come from is a tremendous advantage for a general manager."
Although Luhnow's career has taken him across the country, he has remained connected to the schools over the years. He spoke in an economics class during a Webb Alumni Weekend, spoke to students over Unbounded Days and hosted WSC baseball players in Houston. He taught them about the history of the Astros during a tour of Minute Maid Park. Students watched batting practice, saw the view from the press box, talked with Luhnow in the dugout, and met some of the players.
Join the conversation. The Spring/Summer issue of WEBB Magazine is in the mail and on its way to you. In it we explore Webb’s new innovative curriculum—an educational experience being talked about across the country. From the newly invigorated core curriculum that includes The American Idea and Evolutionary Biology, to the ONLY AT WEBB series of Honors and Advanced Studies courses featuring Advanced Studies in Biotechnology and Honors Ethics & Modern Global Affairs—the Webb program is engaging students in field study and independent research work like never before.
The Webb Schools is pleased to offer a live stream for both the Vivian Webb School and Webb School of California Commencement Ceremonies on June 2, 2018. The events are available below, and will be concurrently streaming on Webb's Facebook page as well as the schools' Livestream.com page.