Biography of President Donald J. Laackman

Champlain College President Donald J. Laackman Don Laackman, the eighth president of Champlain College, is committed to making Champlain the finest small, professionally and globally focused college in the United States.

In his first year as Champlain's President, Don announced the launch of the Champlain College Futures Initiative, an effort that will bring intentionality and mindfulness to identifying emerging trends and opportunities, understanding the College's strengths, and building on these strengths to position the College for success. Don also oversaw the expansion of Champlain College's path-breaking truED education partnership to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM). OPM joins leading firms such as AT&T, MetLife and Cisco in providing their employees with a high-quality, cost-effective education. Under Don's leadership, the College also announced the opening of the David L. Cooperrider Center for Appreciative Inquiry, which is in the Robert P. Stiller School of Business.

Don came to Champlain College from Harold Washington College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago, where he served as president from 2011 through 2014. Don played a key role in the college's ''Reinvention'' initiative, creating strategies and programs for diverse student populations while eliminating barriers to employment and addressing inequality in higher education. In 2012, Don launched the Business, Professional Services and Entrepreneurship ''College to Careers'' offering, a mayoral initiative providing students access to real-world experience through teacher-practitioners and internships, and getting more students and graduates into meaningful jobs.

Prior to his presidency at Harold Washington, Don managed workforce and education programs for Civic Consulting Alliance, a non-profit partnership dedicated to reshaping how Chicago operates through building pro-bono teams of business experts, government leaders and staff that develop strategies for making Chicago more livable, affordable and globally competitive.

From 1984 to 2007, Don worked at Accenture, one of the world's leading consulting, technology and outsourcing firms. Over his twenty-three-year career with the company as a partner and managing director, he led strategy, sales, planning, change management and information technology initiatives for clients of the financial services and insurance industry.

Don received his B.A. degree in Economics, Politics, Rhetoric and Law from the University of Chicago in 1984. He obtained his master's degree in Public Policy from the University of Chicago in 2009.

Don is married to Allyson Laackman (view bio here), who currently serves as the Executive Director of the Burlington Housing Authority. They have two children, Donald and Emily.