100 Women Wall of Honor
About100 Women Wall of Honor

Laura M. Secord

An education enthusiast, Laura M. Secord (1926-2000) (BS 1948 Home Economics) dedicated her life to children. She grew up the youngest of five in Elm Grove, Wisconsin, and came to UW-Madison to study chemistry. She soon switched to home economics, a change that fed her interests in early childhood development and nutrition. At UW-Madison she not only fell in love with campus’ Bascom Hill and Picnic Point, but also her future husband, Robert (BS 1948 Economics), a native of Westby, Wisconsin. After college the two married, moved to Minnesota, and started their own family of five children. Laura’s background in early childhood development and nutrition remained at the forefront as she grew her family and helped build their suburban community. “Her career became her children,” states her daughter Nancy Ballsrud (MBA 1975 Finance), who along with husband, James R. Nelson (MS 1976 Counseling & Guidance), gifted the Laura M. Secord Chair in Early Childhood Development. “She was a wonderful mother who encouraged our education and helped us discover our own individual passions.”