Hamden Hall Country Day School

Educating students in PreSchool through Grade 12

Planned Gift Allows Alumnus to 'Pay It Forward'


While Trustee Jordan Hadelman, Class of 1972, has long supported his alma mater with his time, talent, and treasure, he recently remembered the school that he says “is important to me” in his estate planning.

Jordan, who serves as secretary on our Board of Trustees, added Hamden Hall as a beneficiary in his will. He jokes that he hopes the school won’t realize the gift for many years to come, but maintains that other than being a bit awkward to deal with one’s mortality, the end results are meaningful.

“From my perspective, the school is very important to me. I received financial aid when I was a student at Hamden Hall, and I’d like to pay it forward,” he explains.

Jordan adds that it’s the “obligation of alumni to set the stage for future alums to receive the outstanding education” that Hamden Hall offers. He has invested in our students’ education for decades as a longtime supporter of scholarship and the Hamden Hall Fund.

“Hamden Hall is such a unique place in that it offers a quality education, a good moral compass, and the opportunity for critical thinking. It’s something that I’m very grateful for,” he says.

Head of School Bob Izzo maintains that Hamden Hall is grateful in its own right to Jordan given his stalwart support of the school for the past several decades.

“Jordan is deeply committed to Hamden Hall in so many capacities. I feel blessed to have him as a trustee. In addition, Jordan understands and appreciates the value of how our alumni can really help make a difference in the lives of our current students. We talk about the giving of time, treasure, and talent in terms of our gracious donors, and Jordan has certainly given all three throughout the years,” said Bob. 

Jordan is now retired from his career in healthcare recruitment, in which he served as the founding chairman of Witt/Kieffer, one of the nation’s leading executive search firms. Named in The New Career Makers as one of America’s top executive recruiters, Jordan was with Witt/Kieffer for 33 years before retiring in 2014. He became chairman and CEO in 1996 and was named founding chairman in 2009.

While one of his favorite pastimes is teeing up on the golf course, that particular pursuit also dovetails nicely with his current philanthropic interests. Jordan and a partner created the Oak Park Foundation, which supports golf caddies financially with regard to their college education.

“My energy these days philanthropically is geared toward creating educational opportunities. Our foundation helped 60 kids last year go to college,” says Jordan.

He is also involved in the Evan Scholarship Program through his Oak Park Country Club in Chicago, which has a similar mission of providing college assistance.

“Between the two organizations, we have raised half a million dollars for kids to go to school,” he says. 

His own education included six years under the pines starting in seventh grade and was followed by enrollment at Georgetown University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration. Jordan received his master’s in hospital administration from George Washington University (GWU). 

In 2006, Jordan was recognized as one of six “extraordinary alumni” at GWU and was honored with the 70th annual Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award. According to the university, “The award is the highest form of recognition given by the University to alumni who have made a lasting impact on society.” He was also honored in 2016 by Hamden Hall, having been a recipient of an Alumni Achievement Award.  

Jordan and his wife, Debra, have two sons, Spencer and Benjamin, who are grown and successful in their own right. 

“I’ve been really lucky and have enjoyed a modicum of success,” states Jordan. “When I was at Hamden Hall, someone before me had invested in the school in order to create the opportunities that I had. I am now in a similar position where I am able to help with something that is important to me – providing a quality education.”
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Hamden Hall Country Day School

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Hamden Hall Country Day School is a nurturing and inclusive community with a dynamic learning environment that promotes academic excellence by understanding each child and fostering their individual growth.