Meg McDonald joins Buffett as senior director of operations and strategic planning

October 7, 2016

The Buffett Institute is pleased to welcome Meg McDonald as its new Senior Director of Operations and Strategic Planning. Meg is currently Assistant Vice President for Research at the Office for Research and will join the Buffett Institute in a full-time capacity in November.

Meg McDonald headshot

“Buffett’s faculty, staff, fellows and students all display such passion about their work and they are making a positive impact on the world around us,” Meg says. “Such work is crucial to the future of an increasingly global, yet often divided, society.”

Meg has spent more than a decade in the Office for Research, leading operations and strategic planning initiatives for the University Research Centers (URC). The Office for Research Planning, Administration and Finance (ORPAF), the Office for Research Communication (ORC) and the Office for Research Information Systems (ORIS) have also reported to her. 

“Meg McDonald is an outstanding addition to the Buffett team,” says Buffett Director Bruce Carruthers. “Her leadership skills and administrative experience make her superbly well qualified to guide the Buffett Institute as it grows and as we continue to expand our research, teaching, and engagement activities. I am truly delighted she will be joining us.” 

Meg first came to Northwestern to pursue a master’s in vocal performance at the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music. Upon completion of her music degree and concurrent with her employment at Northwestern, she sang professionally with companies such as Chicago Opera Theater and Evanston's Light Opera Works. She subsequently earned her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management’s Executive MBA program. She also holds a BFA in music theater from Illinois Wesleyan University.

During her time at the University, Meg has been a member of many initiatives, committees, and workgroups. She is a founding member of the Solar Fuels Institute (SOFI), part of the Institute for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern (ISEN). She is a past president of the Association of Northwestern University Women and is a member of NURAP: Northwestern University Research Administration Professionals. She served on the inaugural Child Care Committee that developed the fee assistance program and the partnership with the Evanston McGaw YMCA. She is active in the Kellogg Executive Women’s Network.

Meg has traveled throughout Europe, Australia, Africa, the South Pacific, and the Caribbean; she’s looking forward to her first trip to Central America over winter break. She lives in Glenview, Illinois, with her husband and son.