Donna Edna Shalala ( /ʃəˈleɪlə/ shə-lay-lə; born February 14, 1941) served for eight years as Secretary of Health and Human Services under President Bill Clinton and has been president of the University of Miami, a private university in Coral Gables, Florida, since 2001. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, by President George W. Bush in June 2008.
Shalala was born in Cleveland, Ohio to Maronite Catholic Lebanese immigrant parents and has a twin sister, Diane Fritel. She graduated from West Tech High School and received her bachelor's degree in 1962 from Western College for Women (which, in 1976, was merged with Miami University in Oxford, Ohio).
She served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Iran from 1962-64, where she worked with other volunteers to construct an agricultural college.