Christakis was elected to serve a two-year term by nearly 300 student, faculty and alumni delegates at the national ODK biennial convention in Charlotte, N.C. July 28. He has been a member of the ODK national board of directors since 2000 and a trustee of the ODK Foundation since 2006.
ODK was founded in 1914 at Washington and Lee University, in Lexington, Va. Since then, the organization has built its recognition of student achievement with chapters, known as circles, at over 300 colleges around the nation today.
Dr. Michael Christakis, UAlbany's assistant vice president for student success, will serve the next two years as national ODK president.
ODK membership, regarded as one of the highest academic honors in education, is offered to less than half of one percent of enrolled college students. Some 8,000 student leaders were initiated this past year nationwide. Christakis will lead the organization to its centennial celebration in 2014.
"ODK holds an important place in the higher education landscape. There is no other single organization exactly like ours,” Christakis said. "I'm honored and deeply humbled to have been elected national president. I hope to serve with a keen acknowledgement of ODK's rich past and a sincere hope for its future."
In addition to his administrative responsibilities, Christakis is an instructor of public administration and policy as well as education administration and policy studies at UAlbany. He received the Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award from the Department of Public Administration and Policy in 2010. Before joining the vice president's office in 2007, Christakis worked in the University’s Residential Life Department and spent two summers working for its orientation program.
Christakis was inducted into ODK as an undergraduate student at Alfred University. He holds master’s and doctorate degrees in public administration & policy from UAlbany.