Deanna and John Oppenheimer appointed as Fritzky Co-Chairs in Leadership

John and DeannaDeanna and John Oppenheimer have been appointed as the 2019-20 Edward V. Fritzky Co-Chairs in Leadership. Established in 2004, this faculty position was specifically designed to bring distinguished business leaders to campus to share expertise with faculty and students. 

Deanna Oppenheimer founded the advisory firm CameoWorks in 2012 and BoardReady, a nonprofit organization that helps corporate clients diversify their boardrooms, in 2017. She is recognized as a global expert in the financial services industry, having served in leadership roles at Washington Mutual and Barclays before launching her own companies. Mrs. Oppenheimer has served on a variety of Fortune-500 and FTSE-100 boards.  

John Oppenheimer is the founder and CEO of Columbia Hospitality (Columbia), a management and consulting company based in Seattle. Columbia’s growing portfolio is comprised of over 40 properties in 25 different communities, including award-winning hotels, restaurants, conference centers, golf facilities, distinctive venues and residential properties. With over 20 years of proven success in management, Columbia has also consulted on more than 200 hospitality projects worldwide. Columbia is one of five successful, private hospitality-related businesses Mr. Oppenheimer has helped launch. He is also author of the book, Keys to the Room: Unlocking the Doors to Opportunities and Possibilities.  

Fostering connections between business leaders and our campus is one of our strengths,” says Frank Hodge, Orin and Janet Smith Endowed Dean of the Foster School. “To have Deanna and John volunteer their service as mentors, lecturers, conveners and consultants as our Fritzky Chairs is an inspiring example of those connections.” 

The endowed chair is named for Edward Fritzky, the former chairman, president and CEO of Immunex Corp, acquired by Amgen in 2002. To honor Fritzky’s leadership contributions and express gratitude to a community of supporters that included the UW, Immunex presented the business school with an endowment for a leadership chair in Fritzky’s name.  

Past Fritzky Chairs include: Charles M. Pigott, former Chairman of PACCAR Inc; Howard Behar, former President of Starbucks North America; Dorrit Bern, former CEO of Charming Shoppes; and Paula and Steve Reynolds, former CEOs of Safeco and Puget Energy, respectively.