Society / Profiles

Dallas PR Guru Robert Weatherly Takes Us Back to the ’80s In His Trademark Preppy Style

He Admits His Look Hasn't Changed Much Since High School

BY // 08.04.21

I can almost feel the desert’s pulsating heat and the scent of a freshly made cocktail through the phone when this month’s He’s the Bomb feature, Robert Weatherly, answers. The dashing jet-setter was poolside at a mid-century modern home in Palm Springs for our first interview. “I’m wearing a bathing suit that resembles wallpaper one might find in one of the Golden Girls South Florida bedrooms,” he shares. “This is my first trip to the oasis just east of L.A. I feel the old Hollywood glamour all around me and the ghosts of the Rat Pack.” This all makes perfect sense — Robert’s style seems straight from that crew’s playbook. A slim-cut blazer and a martini were always within reach for Frank, Dean, and Sammy.

Robert was one of the first people I met when I moved to Dallas, as he was involved with the Dallas Museum of Art’s Junior Associates membership program. Present at most of the gallery openings and surrounded by an adoring group of friends, he introduced me to many in the young donors program. That’s what he is — a connector. In fact, he’s parlayed that over the years into his full-time profession. The Cliffs Notes version of his backstory is a childhood spent in the Midwest, then matriculation at Lake Forest College in Illinois, where he received his B.A. in English Literature in 1990. Post-degree, he lived a cosmopolitan life in Chicago, New York City, London, and Washington, D.C. He landed in Dallas in 2000 after securing a position with Temerlin McClain and quickly became part of the social firmament of the city. His PR and marketing-executive background melded with his skills as a networker and connecting people.

“Early in my career, I learned the value of relationships and the power of partnerships,” he says. “Even my college job was basically to connect people. I’ve always preferred having one meaningful connection and conversation with one guest at a dinner party than having 20 polite surface exchanges throughout the evening.”

He launched his firm Weatherly just six months before the COVID lockdown, but he weathered that storm and now sees meetings resuming with his clients, whom he assists in “solving challenges and achieving their goals by facilitating targeted and effective introductions. I help them build meaningful, lasting relationships by showing them how to better engage with their clients.”

I’ve always preferred having one meaningful connection and conversation with one guest at a dinner party than having 20 polite surface exchanges throughout the evening. – Robert Weatherly

When I ask for the names of those clients, he points out that utter discretion is a key tenet of this endeavor. Let’s just say it’s the quiet one-half of one-percenters who shall remain unnamed. Robert also has a long history of supporting nonprofits, including stints on the board of the Dallas Contemporary and DIFFA (Style Council 2003 and DIFFA Legends 2009). He admits that his style hasn’t changed much since high school. He’s always veered towards the preppy lane, favoring clean, classic tailoring and a palette of navy, white, and black. This pic seems oh-so him.

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He’s the Bomb: Robert Weatherly

Approximate date of the photo.
1984.

The occasion.
Foxfield Races, held twice a year outside of University of Virginia.

What you were wearing.
Ralph Lauren: shirt, tie, and shorts.

What price fashion.
I don’t remember the price of this outfit, but I do recall my first splurge. While studying in Florence, I purchased a shearling coat that was way beyond my budget, but I thought it would be ideal for Chicago winters.

Why this is a Bomb.com picture.
It was taken during one of the best periods in my life: a weekend spent with friends, laughing, having cocktails in the sun, and making great memories. A very carefree time.

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