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Bill Meehan

Bill Meehan
Lecturer
Contact Info
BillMeehan
Lecturer in Strategic Management
Lafayette Partners Lecturer for 2016-2017

Bio

William F. Meehan III is the Lafayette Partners Lecturer in Strategic Management at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and a Director Emeritus of McKinsey & Company. He is a sought-after writer, speaker, teacher and advisor on strategy, leadership, governance, and per­formance measurement for non-profit organizations and philanthropists. He is co-author, with Kim Starkey Jonker, of a forthcoming book from Stanford University Press on those topics.

At Stanford, he also is a founding member of the Advisory Council of the Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, a faculty member of the Public Management Program and the Center for Social Innovation, and a member of the Arts Advisory Council. He developed and teaches a pioneering course in frontier markets private equity and helped launch and shape the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies (SEED). He is a regular contributor to the Stanford Social Innovation Review. In addition, he is an active mentor to students, nonprofit leaders and others. He has advised the University’s Board of Trustees and several other areas of the University.

He serves on the Board of GiveDirectly, and the North American Council of Ashoka. A committed supporter of the arts and advisor to arts organizations, he is also a long-serving board member of the San Francisco Symphony and a member of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival Endowment Board. He is a Special Advisor to King Philanthropies, Equal Opportunity Schools, the San Francisco Opera, and, formerly, Embrace.

He is former Chair of the United Way of the Bay Area, Chairman Emeritus of Guidestar, a former member of the board of Fordham Prep, the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Science, Technology and Economic Policy (STEP), and the California Roundtable.

Meehan retired from McKinsey & Company in December 2008 after a career of over 30 years. His focus at McKinsey was working with chief executives in technology, private equity, and other industries on topics of top management strategy, organization, and leadership. During his tenure, he mentored more than a dozen new CEOs and helped them shape their agendas. In addition to his service to clients, he held many leadership roles within the Firm. As a member of the Shareholders’ Council (McKinsey’s board), he was Chair of the Client Committee and of the McKinsey Investment Office, which oversees more than $8 billion in investments. He was also Vice-Chair of the Directors Review Committee; founder and leader of the Private Equity Practice; Chair of the West Coast Practice; and Managing Director of the San Francisco Office.

Meehan is a Director for Big Switch and a former Director of Juniper Networks and Westward Leaning.

Academic Degrees

  • MBA, Stanford University, 1978
  • BA, Columbia University

Academic Appointments

  • At Stanford University since 1998

Professional Experience

  • Director, McKinsey & Company, Inc., 1978-2008

Awards and Honors

  • Lafayette Partners Lecturer for 2013-present

Publications

Journal Articles

Bill Meehan, Kim Jonker. Stanford Social Innovation Review. 2012, Vol. 10, Issue 1, Pages 48-53.
Kim Jonker, Bill Meehan. Stanford Social Innovation Review. 2008, Vol. 6, Issue 1, Pages 60-65.
Stephanie Lowell, Brian Trelstad, Bill Meehan. Stanford Social Innovation Review. 2005, Vol. 3, Issue 2, Pages 39-45.
Bill Meehan, Derek Kilmer, Maisie O'Flanagan.... Stanford Social Innovation Review. 2004, Vol. 1, Issue 4, Pages 35-43.
Bill Meehan, Ron Lemmens, Matthew R. Cohler. Harvard Business Review. 2003.
Bill Meehan, Les Silverman. Leader to Leader. 2001, Vol. 2001, Issue 22, Pages 1–72.
Jed Dempsey, Robert E. Dvorak, Endre Holen, David Mark, Bill Meehan. McKinsey Quarterly. 1998, Issue 1.
Jed Dempsey, Robert E. Dvorak, Endre Holen, David Mark, Bill Meehan. McKinsey Quarterly. 1997, Issue 4.
Bill Meehan. Internal McKinsey Knowledgebase. 1997.
Robert E. Dvorak, Endre Holen, David Mark, Bill Meehan. McKinsey Quarterly. 1997, Issue 3.

Teaching

Degree Courses

2016-17

The Social Ventures Practicum is an experiential learning course for student teams actively working to launch a social venture (nonprofit or for-profit or tbd).n nDesigned as a follow-on to ideation courses such as STRAMGT 356: Startup Garage or...

This course seeks to provide a survey of the strategic, governance, and management issues facing a wide range of nonprofit organizations and their executive and board leaders, in the era of venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. The...

2015-16

In 2001, Jim O'Neil of Goldman Sachs wrote a research note which underscored the importance of so-called Emerging Markets to a well-balanced investment portfolio. Still today, most investors have little or no investment exposure beyond North...

The Social Ventures Practicum is an experiential learning course for student teams actively working to launch a social venture (nonprofit or for-profit or tbd).n nDesigned as a follow-on to ideation courses such as STRAMGT 356: Startup Garage or...

This course seeks to provide a survey of the strategic, governance, and management issues facing a wide range of nonprofit organizations and their executive and board leaders, in the era of venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. The...

2014-15

In 2001, Jim O'Neil of Goldman Sachs wrote a research note which underscored the importance of so-called Emerging Markets to a well-balanced investment portfolio. Still today, most investors have little or no investment exposure beyond North...

The Critical Analytical Thinking (CAT) seminar helps develop and hone the skills needed to analyze complex issues, to formulate well-reasoned arguments and to evaluate others€™ arguments. In sections of 18 students or less, you will analyze,...

Giving away money well-i.e., achieving genuine planned impact in a measurable way--turns out to be as hard or harder than earning or investing it. In this seminar, students will decide how and to which nonprofit organization they will make a real...

This course seeks to provide a survey of the strategic, governance, and management issues facing a wide range of nonprofit organizations and their executive and board leaders, in the era of venture philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. The...

Stanford Case Studies

Equal Opportunities Schools: Finding the Missing Students | SM240
William F. Meehan, Davina Drabkin2015
Exits in Emerging Markets: Actis' Investment in Umeme | F311
Mark Hartmann, William F. Meehan, Meaghan Conway2015
The Abraaj Group: Making of a Global Private Equity Firm | F312
William F. Meehan, Ali Gara2015
The San Francisco Symphony | SM63
William F. Meehan, Katharina Schmitt, Anne Lee2015
Citadel Capita (A) Managing for Opportunity and the Unexpected | F287A
William Meehan, Paul Pfleiderer, Debra McCoy2013
Citadel Capital (B): Managing for Opportunity and the Unexpected | F287
William F. Meehan III, Paul C. Pfleiderer, Debra McCoy2013
GiveWell Real Change for Your Dollar | SI122
William Meehan III, Davina Drabkin2013
GuideStar | SI121
William Meehan, Davina Drabkin2013
IFC and Emerging Market Private Equity | F288
William Meehan III, Paul Pfleiderer, Michael Kennedy, Debra McCoy2013
Leopard Capital, Private Equity in Cambodia | F279
Michael Kennedy, Debra McCoy, William Meehan III, Sheila Melvin, Paul Pfleiderer2013
Managing for Value at the Global Environment Fund | F285
Michael Kennedy, Debra McCoy, William Meehan III, Paul Pfleiderer2013
Zephyr Peacock India: Perfectly Diligent | F283
William Meehan, Paul Pfleiderer, Sheila Melvin, Debra McCoy2013
Ashoka, Innovators for the Public | SM203
William Meehan III, Georgia Koehane2012
Asia Alternatives, Approaching the Frontier | F278
William Meehan III, Paul Pfleiderer, Michael Kennedy, Debra McCoy, Sheila Melvin2012
Standard Chartered Private Equity Africa, Value at the Frontier | F280
William Meehan III, Paul Pfleiderer, Michael Kennedy, Debra McCoy2012
Willow Creek Community Church, What Really Makes a Difference | SM198
William Meehan III, Davina Drabkin2012
National Parks Conservation Association: Public/Private Partnerships | SI117
Sara Leslie, William Meehan III2010
Leadership Public Schools: The Challenges of Real Estate Stability | SI111
Leslie Sara Gaviser, William Meehan III2009
Tipping Point Community | SI116
Leslie Sara Gaviser, William Meehan III2009
Acumen Fund and WaterHealth International: The Role of Venture Philanthropy | SM158
Jane Healey, David Hoyt, William Meehan III2007
Rural Development Institute (B): Success in India | SM159B
Kim Jonker, William Meehan III2007
The San Francisco Foundation: The Dilemma of The Buck Trust (B) | SI106B
Victoria Chang, William Meehan III2007
Ashoka, Innovators for the Public | SM157
William Meehan III, Trabian Shorters2006
Acumen Fund and Mytry De-Fluoridation Filter Technologies | SM139
William Meehan III Yasmina Zaidman2005
Note On Issues Facing Nongovernmental Organizations | SM141
Charles Bonini, William Meehan III, Brian Tayan2005
Oregon Shakespeare Festival | SM104
Sheila Bonini, Emily Knapp, William Meehan III2002
Ashoka: Innovators for the Public (North America Program) | SM64
Jung Choi, William Meehan III2001
Eastside College Preparatory School | SI13
Pehr Luedtke, William Meehan III2001
Quest Scholars Program | SI11
Lesley Koenig, William Meehan III, Robert Ransom2001
The San Francisco Foundation: The Dilemma of The Buck Trust (A) | SI106A
Robert Augsburger, Victoria, Chang, William Meehan III1998

Conferences, Talks, and Speaking Engagements

Stanford University Affiliations

Greater Stanford University

Service to the Profession

Board Member

  • GiveDirectly
  • San Francisco Symphony
  • Oregon Shakespeare Festival Endowment
  • Chairman, United Way of the Bay Area
  • Philanthropic Research Inc
  • California Business Roundtable
  • Fordham Preparatory School
  • California Business Roundtable
  • Fordham Preparatory School
  • National Academy of Sciences' Board on Science, Technology and Economic Policy (STEP)
  • GuideStar
  • Chair, United Way of the Bay Area
  • Big Switch
  • Westward Leaning
  • Formerly, Juniper Networks

Advisory Roles

  • Equal Opportunity Schools
  • Embrace
  • Chairman Emeritus, Guidestar
  • North American Council of Ashoka
  • Positive Coaching Alliances's National Advisory board

In the Media

San Francisco Chronicle, 12 8, 2000

Insights by Stanford Business

February 1, 2016
Stanford GSB professors share their reading list for topics related to impact.
July 10, 2015
Apply the fundamentals of corporate governance to charitable work.
April 22, 2015
A new survey shows many lack skills, engagement to effectively oversee organizations.
March 20, 2014
Experienced board members from the Stanford community share their advice for choosing a first time board.