As a student looking for an academic program that was more closely aligned to his interests, John McDonald switched his major from engineering to industrial supervision. His family background in manufacturing and his degree selection served him well throughout his banking career.
McDonald began his 35-year career in Lafayette, Indiana, with Lafayette National Bank. During those years he served as an officer in eight institutions as the banking industry experienced a series
of mergers and acquisitions. In 2003, he retired as managing director of the large corporate real estate group in Banc One Capital Markets Inc. in Chicago, Illinois. This group provided debt-side funding for real estate investment trusts (REITs) and publicly traded national home builders.
McDonald can be seen at all the Purdue home football games, and he travels with family members (including his grandson) to the Purdue bowl games. He is a lifetime member of the Purdue Alumni Association and John Purdue Club.
He is active in his church and continues his involvement with his professional and civic organizations.
McDonald and his wife, JoAnne, reside in Chicago, Illinois. They have two grown daughters.
This was originally written for the Distinguished Technology Alumni Awards in 2008.