MEF Honors Dr. & Mrs. Donald Haider at 25th Annual Reach for Excellence Awards

On Tuesday, October 11, Dr. and Mrs. Donald Haider will receive the Reach for Excellence Award in recognition for their outstanding service to Chicago's at-risk youth at Midtown Educational Foundation's 25th Annual Reach for Excellence Awards Dinner.

Don Haider is a Professor of Strategy at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University, where he also directs the Center for Nonprofit Management. He has been a member of the faculty for forty-two years with leaves for public service. Dr. Haider has served on MEF's board of directors for nearly 20 years. 

At the recent Board Fellows Breakfast, where Don was recognized as he retires from his position at the Kellogg School, MEF Executive Director Glenn Wilke reflected,

"Don represents what we teach at our centers: virtue and character. When you can instill character, that is how you can help young, low-income, academically-average kids to move forward. In a similar way, he has put in many years at Northwestern teaching graduate students to reach for excellence as they grow in character. He has had an impact on so many students' lives through the Kellogg school, especially in the Board Fellow Program. Additionally, Don has shown long-lasting love and dedication for his family—exactly what we teach at MEF. The importance of family and parents is a core element of MEF's best practices. Family and character are the key for these young people; Don epitomizes both." 

MEF has been fortunate to benefit from the service and knowledge of a Kellogg School of Management board fellow under the leadership of Dr. Haider for the past eight years. Fellows have assisted MEF with strategic projects in areas of marketing, student evaluation, competitive analysis, the parenting program and most notably, helping to start a Friends of Metro monthly giving club to mirror the long-standing Friends of Midtown giving club. 

Dr. Haider's civic activities have included: White House Fellow, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, Budget Director and Chief Financial Officer, City of Chicago. He has served on numerous corporate and nonprofit boards, government councils and public commissions.

Jean Haider has served on the Women's Board of Lyric Opera of Chicago, as President of the Friday Club, and President of the Guild of the Chicago History Museum. She has been much involved in the civic life of the Edgewater community where she and her husband reside.

The Haiders have three children—Blake, Elinor and Paul—and six grandchildren.


You can read more about Dr. Haider's retirement here on Northwestern's webpage. 

Are you a Kellogg graduate? Has Dr. Haider helped you reach for excellence? We'd love to hear from you!

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