Lacey H. Leegwater, M.Ed., is the vice president of planning and operations at the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP). In this role, she oversees the operations of the organization, including IHEP’s finances, information technology, human resources, and convenings. Leegwater also oversees new project development and contributes to the strategic positioning and future directions of the organization and serves as an expert contributor to a number of the organization’s applied research projects. She has a deep passion for helping institutions and communities successfully improve how their students—particularly 21st Century students—gain entry to and succeed in postsecondary education.
Previously, Leegwater managed IHEP’s institutional portfolio, including its work with minority-serving institutions (MSIs), through projects like the Building Engagement and Attainment for Minority Students project, Lumina MSI Models of Success Program, Project Win-Win, and Walmart Minority Student Success Initiative.
Prior to joining IHEP in 2005, Leegwater worked at the American Association for Higher Education, where she began her work with MSIs and worked on other student learning and engagement initiatives, including electronic portfolio projects.
Leegwater earned her M.A. in education from the University of Virginia’s Curry School of Education, with a specialty in social foundations of education. Leegwater also holds a B.A. in political science and economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.