President Beck Welcomes Business Leader, Author Harry Jansen Kraemer Jr. ’77 for Annual Matriculation Convocation

Harry M. Jansen Kraemer Jr., former chief executive officer of the multibillion-dollar global health care company Baxter International, joins President Jill Beck in opening Lawrence’s 163rd academic year and 2011-12 convocation series Thursday, Sept. 15 with the annual matriculation address.  The theme for this year’s convocation series is “Liberal Arts and the Life of the Mind.”

Harry Jansen Kraemer Jr.

A 1977 Lawrence University graduate, Kraemer presents “Becoming a Values-Based Leader” at 11:10 a.m. in the Lawrence Memorial Chapel.  The convocation is free and open to the public.

The address is based on his 2011 book “From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership.” Kraemer has generously donated 500 copies of the book for distribution to the Lawrence community.

In the book, Kraemer draws upon his own professional experiences to provide a values-based framework for leaders to create organizations that do the right thing, not just do things right. Leaders, according to Kraemer, should be guided by four critical principles: self-reflection, balance, true self-confidence and genuine humility.

“Harry has spent a great deal of time in recent years looking inward, reflecting on who he is and what it is that he most believes in,” said Beck.  “In doing so, he’s identified keys to a style of leadership that is values-based and driven by success that is not defined in dollars, or in owning sprawling mansions and luxury cars, or by the title that is on an office door.”

Past chairman of the Lawrence Board of Trustees, Kraemer is an executive partner at Madison Dearborn Partners, a private equity investment firm based in Chicago. He also serves as an adjunct professor of management and strategy at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, where he was recognized with the school’s 2008 “Professor of the Year” award.

Other speakers on Lawrence’s 2011-12 convocation series include:

• Nov. 3, 2011 — Alex Ross, author and music critic for The New Yorker, “The Lamento Connection: Bass Lines of Music History.”

• Feb. 2, 2012 — Frans de Waal, primatologist and professor of primate behavior at Emory University, “Morality Before Religion: Empathy, Fairness and Prosocial Primates.”

• April 19, 2012 — William Deresiewicz, essayist, literary and cultural critic, and former associate professor of English at Yale University, “Through the Vale of Soul-Making: the Journey of the Liberal Arts.”

• May 31, 2012 — Jerald Podair, professor of history and Robert S. French Professor of American Studies at Lawrence, “The Only Life: Liberal Arts and the Life of the Mind at Lawrence.”

Founded in 1847, Lawrence University uniquely integrates a college of liberal arts and sciences with a world-class conservatory of music, both devoted exclusively to undergraduate education. Ranked among America’s best colleges, it was selected for inclusion in the book “Colleges That Change Lives: 40 Schools That Will Change the Way You Think About College.” Individualized learning, the development of multiple interests and community engagement are central to the Lawrence experience. Lawrence draws its 1,520 students from 44 states and 56 countries.