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It Was a Much More Complex World

It Was a Much More Complex World

More From Donna

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Shalala describes the culture of Iran during her Peace Corps experience in the Middle East.

Donna's Biography

As both an educator and political advocate, Donna Shalala's résumé is impressive.


Born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1941, Shalala grew up with an intense curiosity about the world — and in particular, the Middle East. Her experience serving in the Peace Corps in Iran in the 1960s was instrumental in influencing her outlook on both education and policy-making.


Shalala's work in academic administration began in 1980 when she served as the tenth president of Hunter College. From there, she was named chancellor of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She then served as University of Miami's fifth president for 14 years.


In September 2014, the former Health and Human Services Secretary announced she would step down from her role as University of Miami president to move to New York to head the Clinton Foundation.