Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,
It is with genuine enthusiasm, and with the unanimous support of the Board of Trustees, that we welcome Rajagopal “Raj” Echambadi as the 10th president of Illinois Tech.
An internationally renowned business-innovation expert and Dunton Family Dean at Northeastern University’s D’Amore-McKim School of Business, Raj is the perfect person to help us meet our founding mission to empower students from all backgrounds to achieve their dreams. Raj’s commitment to Illinois Tech’s founding purpose to liberate the collective power of difference to advance technology and progress for all is incredibly deep, and we look forward to welcoming him on Monday, August 16, during Illinois Tech’s Welcome Week celebration.
Raj’s sterling track record of creating collaborative, purpose-driven learning modules is truly impressive. As dean of Northeastern’s business school, Raj led the development of innovative new programs including a significant increase in interdisciplinary combined degree offerings. He also launched Northeastern’s Office of Student Engagement, Affinity, and Inclusion and helped to develop its Building Belonging Fellows, Pathfinders, and Peer Affinity Cohorts to empower students from diverse backgrounds to utilize entrepreneurial skills to become change makers and to help cultivate a more supportive and inclusive on-campus experience for all students.
Prior to joining Northeastern, Echambadi served as the Alan J. and Joyce D. Baltz Professor and the senior associate dean of strategic innovation at Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As a driving force behind the University of Illinois’s scaled online M.B.A. (iMBA) program, Echambadi has a demonstrated track record of leveraging his background as a leading academic research expert in organizational strategic innovation to develop new and forward-looking academic programs designed to empower student success in a dynamic marketplace, while developing a culture of philanthropy at every institutional level.
The majority of his academic research has focused on strategic innovation within organizations and how companies should balance current and future opportunities. His research on employee entrepreneurship won the prestigious Academy of Management Journal Best Paper Award. He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Master of Business Administration from Anna University in India, and a doctorate in marketing from the University of Houston.
Most importantly, Raj’s authentic connection with Illinois Tech’s founding mission to empower students from all backgrounds and points of view and to drive student achievement by liberating the collective power of difference to advance technology and progress for all will help ensure our university’s future success.
Lastly, on behalf of the entire Board of Trustees, I would like to offer my sincere thanks to outgoing President Alan W. Cramb for his years of incredible leadership to our university. Not only has President Cramb helped to further Illinois Tech’s place as an integral part of the Chicago tech ecosystem, but he has done so with a commitment to inclusive innovation that has enabled us to develop socially conscious leaders who are equipped with the entrepreneurial spirit.
Michael P. Galvin (LAW ’78), Chairman
Illinois Tech Board of Trustees