Michele Baker Richardson, JD
Michele Baker Richardson is founder and principal of Higher Education Advocates LLC, a consulting and early career executive coaching firm whose domestic and international client base includes the families of Fortune 500 C-suite executives and top-ranked colleges and universities. Her expertise includes strategic advising and counsel regarding development and presentation of credentials, yield management and navigating complex organizations. Her experience as a health lawyer, health law professor and law school dean prepared her for the complexities and challenges of board work in the ever-changing healthcare industry that has become the center of a nationwide conversation about health equity. Ms. Richardson began her board service in 2004 as a member of the governing council for Advocate South Suburban Hospital. After two years, she was asked to join the system board of directors (Advocate Health and Hospitals Corporation), where she has served in several leadership roles, including chair-elect and chair (from January 2022). Ms. Richardson also chairs the strategic planning committee and is a member of the governance committee, the compensation and benefits committee, and the diversity, equity and inclusion committee. She has previously served as chair of the Advocate Health Care board, vice chair, and as a member of the finance and audit committees. Ms. Richardson is one of three executive sponsors and is a board member of the Black Directors Health Equity Agenda. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and organizational behavior from Brown University and her Juris Doctor degree from Yale Law School. Upon graduation, she clerked for the late A. Leon Higginbotham Jr., chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. She completed a teaching fellowship in legal research and writing and tort law at Stanford Law School before beginning her career in the health law group at Hogan (& Hartson) Lovells in Washington, D.C. She has held academic appointments at Chicago-Kent College of Law, DePaul University and, most recently, at the University of Chicago Law School, where she was dean of students from 2006 to 2010, prior to starting her consulting practice.