The Columns

J. Lawrence Connolly Joins W&L Board of Trustees

— by on May 15th, 2015

J. Lawrence Connolly, of Atlanta, the former CEO of Connolly Inc., a recovery audit accounting and consulting firm, joined the Washington and Lee Board of Trustees on May 15, at its spring meeting, in Lexington. He is a member of the W&L Class of 1979.

After graduation, Connolly joined the company of the same name, which his father had founded that same year. He earned an M.B.A. in 1982 from Tulane University and went on to a career at Coopers & Lybrand before returning to the family fold in 1986. With his sister, Libby Connolly Alexander, as the COO, they grew the company from 30 employees to more than 1,250. It made frequent appearances on Inc. 5000’s list of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. In 2012, he and Alexander sold the company to Advent International, and he stepped down as CEO.

In 2013, he and wife, Leigh, established at W&L the J. Lawrence Connolly Center for Entrepreneurship and the J. Lawrence Connolly Endowment for the Shepherd Program for the Interdisciplinary Study of Poverty and Human Capability. In 2010, the Connollys established an endowment to support W&L interns working in Atlanta through the Shepherd Alliance, a summer internship program administered by the Shepherd Program. He serves on the University’s Entrepreneurship Advisory Board and formerly served on the Shepherd Program Alumni Advisory Committee.

The Connollys have two children, Catherine and Jay.