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Haider, Donald H.


Donald H. Haider was born on February 21, 1942 in Evanston, Illinois. He grew up in Winnetka, Illinois and graduated from New Trier High School in 1960. Haider went on to receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1964 in Political Science from Stanford University. He also received a master’s degree in Political Science (1967) and a PhD in Political Science (1973) from Columbia University, where he received many academic honors, including a front page article in the New York Times regarding the financial collapse of New York City, and accepted appointment as an assistant professor of Political Science in 1971. Shortly after, Haider was hired as an assistant professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management. In 1978, after a year as a White House Fellow where he worked for three Directors of the Office of Management and Budget, and continued professorship at Kellogg, Haider took the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Treasury for State and Local Finance before becoming the Budget Director for the City of Chicago under Mayor Jane Byrne. He then returned to Kellogg as Director of the Public and Not-for-Profit Management Program. In December 1986, Haider, although a registered Democrat, was contacted by the Republican Party, who wanted to nominate him as the GOP candidate for the Chicago mayoral race. He accepted the endorsement and won his primary election. In 1987, Haider ran against Democrats Harold Washington, the incumbent mayor; Alderman and Cook Country Democratic Party Chairman Edward Vrdolyak; and Thomas Hynes, Cook County Assessor. Washington won the Democratic primary, which led Vrdolyak and Hynes to run with minor parties. Pushing policies such as job creation, increased public safety, and improved revenue collection, and more efficient city government, Haider ran an issues-focused campaign that was isolated from the contentious dynamic among the other three nominees. The abundance of candidates and their financial resources made it difficult for Haider to run an effective campaign against Washington, as Vrdolyak and Hynes diverted many voters from Haider. Near the end of the campaign, Haider acknowledged that he could not win the campaign, but declined to drop out because he felt he was bringing up important issues that the city’s current leadership was not addressing. Washington won the race in April 1987. Haider returned to academia and is currently a professor at the Kellogg School of Management, specializing in Nonprofit Management, Public Finance, Public Management, and Public Policy. Haider was inducted into the Business Excellence Insitute's Hall of Fame in 2017. In 2018, Haider was elected into the U.S. Rugby Hall of Fame. He played rugby at Stanford University, coached and played the sport in Chicago, and edited Scrumdown magazine, a publication about rugby in the United States.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Donald Haider Papers

Identifier: 12/3/14
Abstract Donald Haider (professor at Northwestern University's Kellogg Graduate School of Management) ran for mayor of the City of Chicago in 1987. His papers include biographical materials, academic publications, and material relating to Haider's mayoral campaign (the bulk of the collection).
Dates: 1961-2007; Other: Date acquired: 03/11/2015