He is chief executive officer of DST Systems, Inc., headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. McDonnell has worked with the company since March of 1969, and served as president from 1973 to 2009. DST is a leading provider of information processing and computer software services and products to the financial services, communications and healthcare industries.
Previously, he served as chairman of the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas City United Way Campaign and the Union Station Project Consultants. McDonnell also serves on a number of corporate boards, including DST Systems, Inc., Garmin LTD, Commerce Bancshares, Inc., Blue Valley Bank Corp., Euronet Worldwide, Inc., and Kansas City Southern. He became a board member of Asurion in January of 2006.
McDonnell has been recognized with various honors, including Kansas Citian of the Year, 2003; the William Jewell College Yates Medallion for Distinguished Civic Service; and, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce Centurion Leadership Award. In 2004, McDonnell received an honorary Doctorate of Law from the Pepperdine University George L. Graziadio School of Business and Management. McDonnell is a native of Kansas City. He received a BSBA degree in accounting from Rockhurst University, and an MBA in finance from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania.