Top 25 Consultants 2015: Laura Yaeger

Laura Yaeger
Huron Consulting Group
Excellence in Leadership 


Laura Yaeger is a founding member and the leader of Huron Consulting Group’s Education and Life Sciences practice and has been consulting in the higher education and healthcare environments for more than 25 years.

When Huron was founded in 2002, the higher education practice was comprised of approximately 35 professionals. The practice has grown to more than 350 professionals today, making Huron Education the largest consulting practice dedicated to serving the higher education industry. Huron Education has worked with more than 90 of the top 100 research universities.

“I take pride in the growth and development of our practice, most of which has been organic growth and driven by the relentless passion our experienced professionals have in developing our talent,” Yaeger says. “I am immensely proud of the impact our team has had in helping institutions improve their organizational effectiveness and ability to continue their extraordinary traditions of achievement and success. Change does not come easily at these complex institutions, and it is rewarding to see how our team collaborates with university leaders and faculty to drive and achieve results.”

Yaeger specializes in helping research universities, academic medical centers, and hospitals become better-positioned to achieve strategic and financial goals, manage risk, and plan for the future.

“I have always viewed my role as head of the practice as a service role—whether that is my teammates or my clients,” she says. “ I have a competitive spirit, which encourages me to stretch myself and challenge my practice to exceed expectations and maximize the benefit to clients.”

Higher education institutions are unlike traditional businesses, she says. “They are truly unique in so many ways which makes working in this industry and learning about each institution’s different culture and challenges truly rewarding,” she says. “What motivates me most is the creativity needed to identify ways to achieve success in each client’s operating environment.”

Yaeger says she thrives on being out of her comfort zone, and says it’s amazing how much she learns when she takes risks. “Consulting can often be a stressful profession, so while it’s important to push hard for results, I also ensure that people in my practice enjoy the experience and have fun,” she says. “[I enjoy] the dynamic environment where every day is different. And I really enjoy working with such a diverse set of clients, engagements and people in an industry that has such a significant impact on our society.”

What does winning the award mean to you, your firm and your clients?

“It is a huge honor to be recognized. This is a real tribute to our entire team, who through close collaboration and passion for making an impact, have helped me build a practice that is the nation’s premier firm serving the higher education industry. Huron has built a strong foundation and reputation around collaboration, both internally among our practices and externally with our clients, to make sure we bring the best resources to contribute to the engagement. Our clients appreciate that Huron’s approach is not about Huron’s success, but rather, it is about their success.”