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Forester News

Jackie Slaats promoted to VP for Career Services and Athletics

President Stephen Schutt announced the promotion of longtime staff member, Jackie Slaats, to Vice President for Career Services and Athletics in a campus-wide email on May 30.

In this new position, Slaats will supervise and provide innovative strategic direction for both the Career Advancement Center (CAC) and the Department of Athletics. “One of our most experienced, energetic, and accomplished leaders, Jackie will do an outstanding job in this key, expanded role,” Schutt said.

Slaats joined the College in 1986 as the head women’s basketball and volleyball coach, and was promoted to Director of Athletics in 1992. A longtime member of the College’s senior staff, she has played key roles in recruitment, retention, fundraising, and community initiatives, and in the renovation and expansion of the Sports and Recreation Center and hockey rink. “In 2008 I appointed her Senior Advisor to the President, in recognition of her administrative strength, strategic talent, and deep knowledge of the College,” Schutt said.

Under Slaats’ leadership, the Lake Forest athletic program has established an enviable Tradition of Excellence in which varsity teams have won 57 conference championships while maintaining an equally impressive record of academic performance. More than 80 student athletes—a new record—were honored at the spring 2019 A Team Dinner for having earned straight As in one or both of the past two semesters.

Also continuously involved in career preparation initiatives, including the Forester Game Plan launched in 2012, Slaats assumed supervisory responsibility for the CAC in 2017. Since then, the CAC has greatly enhanced its five Career Pathway communities, expanded employer relationships throughout Greater Chicago, increased internship opportunities, and provided effective career counseling for hundreds of students. “Jackie’s personal energy has inspired everyone who works in and with CAC, and the whole College has benefited from her dedicated leadership,” Schutt said.

Inducted into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame, and the Lake Forest College Athletic Hall of Fame, Slaats is also a sought-after speaker on coaching, recruiting, leadership, career preparation, and gender equity. She received her bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University, and a master’s degree in education from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.