Pritzker appointed chair of the University of Chicago Charter School board

Margot Pritzker has been appointed governing board chair of the University of Chicago Charter School, effective July 1.

As chair, Pritzker will lead the Charter School’s 17-member governing board, which provides oversight to the school’s four South Side campuses. Pritzker has served on the governing board since July 2007.

“The University of Chicago Charter School contributes directly to the neighborhoods around us, while it provides a platform for ideas and practices that can help schools across the city and around the nation,” said University President Robert J. Zimmer. “Margot Pritzker’s breadth of vision and her deep belief in the power of education make her an ideal leader for this important position.”

“We have a proven educational model and the replicable tools for teachers and children. This has already had, and will continue to have, a profound impact on public school education, here in Chicago and throughout the country,” Pritzker said. “I am deeply committed to this endeavor and look forward to working with our equally dedicated board, faculty and community to continue this essential work.”

The Charter School’s governing board includes faculty and leaders from the University of Chicago and the Urban Education Institute, parents from each of the Charter School’s campuses, and community leaders. The board reviews school performance, provides financial oversight and offers guidance on key personnel.

“Margot has an unparalleled commitment to improving the quality of schooling for children and families on the South Side of Chicago and for sharing what we learn with schools across Chicago and the nation,” said Timothy Knowles, the John Dewey Director of the Urban Education Institute. “We are thrilled she has agreed to chair the board of the University of Chicago Charter School.”

Pritzker plays a vital role in numerous philanthropic initiatives worldwide. She is the founder and president of, an online network that helps connect women with volunteer opportunities. She has worked to improve opportunities for youth in the developing world through her involvement with the Ashesi University in Ghana, Asian University for Women in Bangladesh and the Acumen Fund. In addition, Pritzker has overseen the establishment of schools in the Himalayas and Afghanistan.

She is a director of the Pritzker Early Childhood Foundation, a trustee of the Aspen Institute and a board member of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs.

Pritzker received her BA from Northwestern University and her AM from the University of Chicago.

The Charter School is operated by the University of Chicago’s Urban Education Institute and serves 1,700 public school students from pre-kindergarten through grade 12 at its four campuses. Using curriculum and programming developed at UEI, the four campuses aim to prepare students for success in four-year colleges.

About the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute: The mission of UEI is to create knowledge that helps produce reliably excellent schooling for children in urban America. The organization prepares outstanding urban teachers and leaders through the Urban Teacher Education Program; conducts rigorous research to improve policy and practice, anchored by the Consortium on Chicago School Research; operates four campuses of the University of Chicago Charter School, serving students across the South Side of Chicago; and provides tools, analytics and training to improve schools nationwide through UChicago Impact.