Karen Pritzker is a volunteer and philanthropist with a passionate belief that education can break the cycle of poverty. For the past 15 years, she has devoted her energies to building and supporting Providence St. Mel, a model K-through-12 college preparatory inner-city school in Chicago. As a member of the board, Karen managed a highly successful fundraising campaign and raised community awareness of the school’s achievements in providing a first-class education to some of the city’s most disadvantaged students.
The child of a Foreign Service officer, Karen lived in Martinique, Liberia, Haiti, Jordan, Switzerland and France. She developed her interest in education through her extensive travel and immersion in many different cultures.
After attending Tufts University for two years, Karen transferred to the University of Chicago, earning a B.A. in American History in 1983. She is married to Daniel Pritzker, whom she met while a student at Tufts. Dan Pritzker earned a B.A. from Tufts in 1981 and a J.D. from Northwestern University Law School in 1986. Karen and Dan are trustees of the Jay Pritzker Foundation, a philanthropic fund that created the Pritzker Challenge at Tufts with gifts of $10 million. The Pritzker Challenge is designed to encourage members of the Tufts community to establish endowed or term scholarships for underprivileged minority students.
Karen Pritzker was elected to the Tufts University Board of Trustees in 2003.
Last updated: December 2008