Lisa W. Wardell
President and Chief Executive Officer
Lisa W. Wardell is President and Chief Executive Officer of DeVry Education Group.
Since 1931 DeVry Education Group has empowered its students to achieve their educational and career goals. DeVry Education Group Inc. (NYSE: DV; member S&P MidCap 400 Index) is a leading global education provider and the parent organization of American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine, Becker Professional Education, Carrington College, Chamberlain College of Nursing, DeVry Education of Brazil, DeVry University and its Keller Graduate School of Management, Ross University School of Medicine and Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine.
Wardell was appointed President and CEO in 2016 and has been a member of DeVry Group's board of directors since 2008. She is the only African-American female CEO in the Fortune 1000.
Prior to her current position with DeVry Group, Wardell was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for The RLJ Companies, a diversified holding company with portfolio companies in the financial services, asset management, real estate, hospitality, professional sports, film production and gaming industries. As COO, Wardell was responsible for managing The RLJ Companies portfolio, including strategic partnerships, mergers and acquisitions, business strategy, operations and finance.
With significant experience in structuring and negotiating private equity deals and mergers and acquisitions, Wardell was a key member of the team that led the formation of RLJ McLarty Landers Automotive, now RML, which is the largest minority automotive dealership in the U.S. with more than $1.3 billion in annual revenues. RML has successfully acquired $100 million of additional Harley-Davidson motorcycle and multi-brand automotive dealerships since inception.
Prior to joining The RLJ Companies, Wardell was a Principal at Katalyst Venture Partners, a private equity firm that invested in start-up technology companies in the media and communications industries from 2000 to 2003. From 1998 to 2000, Wardell worked as a Senior Consultant for Accenture in the organization’s communications and technology strategic services practice where she assisted with development of new business architectures for internet technologies and determined key convergence components enabled for telecommunications providers.
Wardell earned her bachelor’s degree from Vassar College and her law degree from Stanford Law School. She earned her master’s degree in finance and entrepreneurial management from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
Wardell was named to Savoy Magazine’s Power 300: 2016 Most Influential Black Corporate Directors list and has been recognized by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the “75 Most Powerful Women in Business” (2010); “Most Powerful Players under 40” (2007); and as one of the “Top 50 Women of Power in Business” (2006). Wardell has also been featured in UPTOWN Magazine (2008), and as one of Upscale magazine’s “Business Leaders to Watch” (2010). She was named to ESSENCE Magazine’s 2008 “Power List” for women in business. She is a member of The Committee of 200 (C200), an invitation-only membership organization of the world's most successful women business leaders.