William Donaldson, MBA 1958

Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette

Interview conducted in March 2002

William “Bill” Donaldson, HBS 1958, was one of the founders of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ). In the late 1950s, a new breed of institutional fund manager required higher quality research on firms’ projected stock price performance than was available on Wall Street at the time. Bill and his partners Dan Lufkin and Richard Jenrette promptly launched DLJ to meet that need. Bill made sure the firm had a seat on the New York Stock Exchange, and later helped overturn regulations so DLJ could be the first investment bank to go public on the NYSE. He went on to cofound Yale’s School of Management and to head the NYSE. Among other leadership roles in business, philanthropy, and academia, he was selected in 2001 to lead the Securities and Exchange Commission under President George W. Bush. In March 2002, Bill described his extraordinary career in a video interview in his Manhattan office. Interviewer: Amy Blitz, HBS Director of Media Development for Entrepreneurial Management. 

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