Mike Krzyzewski

Best Leaders of Our World

Early Life

Mike Krzyzewski was born in Chicago, Illinois on Febuary 13, 1947. He went to high school at Archbishop Weber High School, a Catholic pre school for boys. Then he graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1969. Mike Krzyzewski starting playing basketball while he was training to become an officer in the Army. He was the captain for his Army basketball team in his senior season.
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Coaching Career

He started his coaching career as an assistant with the Indianna Hoosiers. He was an assistant with Indiana for one year, and eventually returned to West Point to be the head coach for the Army Cadets. He coached the Cadets for five seasons, but then left to go coach for Duke University.
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Duke University

On March 18, 1980, Mike Krzyzewski was named the head coach at Duke University. He is the most winning active coach in men's NCAA Tournament play with an 82-25 record. His Duke teams have won 13 ACC Championships, been to 11 Final Fours, and won four NCAA tournament National Championships. When he got his 903rd win, he had an interview and talked about how his leadership skills have improved from past experiences.
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  • National Coach of the Year
  • Victor Award
  • Five Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Basketball Coach of the Year
  • Inducted into the National Polish American Sports Hall of Fame
  • Named America's Best Coach
  • Sportsman of the Year


Founded the Emily Krzyzewski Center, named in honor of his mother. Their mission is to inspire students to dream big, act with character, and reach their potential as leaders. The Center's K to College Model is designed to help children achieve in school and break the cycle of poverty in their families.
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Mike Krzyzewski on his leadership skills. “But the basic foundation of it is the development of trust. In other words, you’re always truthful with the people you lead, and you’re always prepared. I think you should always show courage and have a value-based leadership that can be trusted. If you have trust from the person or the people you’re leading, good things are going to happen.”

Mike Krzyzewski's Leadership

One of his assistant coaches at Duke said, "his strength is teaching young men virtues of togetherness, responsibility, and accountability." Another assistant said, "He embraces the differences in everyone. He truly is a leader who just so happens to coach basketball."