Aaron Skonnard is the CEO of Pluralsight, a SaaS learning platform that empowers enterprise technology teams to expand proficiencies, increase productivity and gain a competitive edge. Aaron cofounded Pluralsight in 2004 and has since grown the company to more than 500 employees and 1,000 expert authors.
As CEO, Aaron focuses on business strategy, future direction, product development and strategic partnerships. He’s led the acquisition of eight companies in three years, enhancing the platforms capabilities. Through his leadership, the company has flourished and is now valued at more than $1 billion.
Aaron is a thought-leader in the industry, speaking at events around the world. He’s the chairman of the board of Start Foundation, a nonprofit that supports Utah’s booming tech community. As a result of his efforts in the tech community, Aaron was named 2015 Utah CEO of the Year from StartSLC and MountainWest Capital’s 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year.
Adam Gazzaley, M.D., Ph.D. is Professor in Neurology, Physiology and Psychiatry at UC San Francisco and the Founder / Executive Director of Neuroscape, a translational neuroscience center engaged in technology creation and scientific research of novel brain assessment and optimization approaches to impact education, wellness, and medicine practices. Dr. Gazzaley is co-founder and Chief Science Advisor of Akili Interactive Labs, a company developing therapeutic video games, and co-founder and Chief Scientist of JAZZ Venture Partners, a venture capital firm investing in experiential technology to improve human performance. Additionally, he is a scientific advisor for over a dozen technology companies including Apple, GE, Magic Leap and Nielsen. He has filed multiple patents, authored over 100 scientific articles, and delivered over 500 invited presentations around the world. He wrote and hosted the nationally-televised PBS special “The Distracted Mind with Dr. Adam Gazzaley”, and co-authored with Dr. Larry Rosen the MIT Press book: “The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World”. Dr. Gazzaley has received many awards and honors, most recently the 2015 Society for Neuroscience – Science Educator Award.
Adam Geller is founder of Edthena, a professional development platform for teachers that uses video for classroom observations. Adam started in education as a science teacher in St. Louis, Mo. After leaving the classroom, he joined the national strategy team of Teach For America where he designed technology impacting teachers across the country. Named to Forbes 30 under 30 and a past Education Ventures fellow at the Kauffman Foundation, Adam is also the founder of Teach For Us.
Adrian M. Fenty served as the fifth Mayor of the District of Columbia from January 2007 – January 2011, where he championed innovative solutions to challenges facing the Nation’s Capital. A visionary with intent focus on reform, Mr. Fenty became a recognized national leader in the areas of urban education reform, public safety, public housing, city revitalization, healthcare and increasing tourism. Mr. Fenty’s Housing First program, which provided permanent, affordable housing to District residents, became a national model. Despite the economic downturn, Mr. Fenty propelled a rapid pace of development, driving transformative projects that contributed to the city maintaining a AAA bond rating.
Committed to ensuring the best possible education for D.C. public school students, Mr. Fenty inserted accountability by advocating for mayoral control of the school system and hired Michelle Rhee as Chancellor. Together, their bold reforms helped bolster confidence in the long maligned public schools in the District, raised student test scores by double digits, increased graduation rates and achieved the first increase in enrollment in 39 years. In addition, he achieved record increases in public safety citywide, resulting in a 23 percent decline in homicides for the first time in 44 years and attracted 10,000 new residents to the city, the largest single-year growth in population since World War II. In 2009,The Washington Post credited Mr. Fenty with making the District “a better place to live and to work.”
Since leaving office, Mr. Fenty has served as an advisor to Silicon Valley tech companies and venture capitalists. He sits on advisory boards of noteworthy companies such as Box.com, OpenGov and Neighborly. Mr. Fenty is a member of Perkins Coie’s Emerging Company Venture Capital practice. Mr. Fenty served as Special Advisor to Andreessen Horowitz for four years before joining MACRO Venture Investments as General Partner in January 2017.
Mr. Fenty received his Bachelor of Arts from Oberlin College (1992), his Juris Doctor from Howard University Law School (1996) and is licensed to practice law in the District of Columbia.
Alex Grech is a strategist, change consultant and academic. He has advised multinationals, governments, NGOs and startups in sectors ranging from ICT and neurosciences to culture and education. Alex is currently working on digital education policy, 21st century skills agendas and lifelong learning. He is a Visiting Senior Lecturer at the University of Malta, an expert on two ET2020 working groups and the executive director of the newly-established Commonwealth Centre for Connected Learning. Alex’s research is in digital citizenship, social media and power. He holds a PhD in Internet Computing from the University of Hull and is an FCCA by profession.
Alexandra Resch is an associate director and senior researcher at Mathematica. Dr. Resch is an expert in rapid cycle evaluation, program evaluation methodology, teacher evaluation, and value-added methods, and her recent work is focused on using rapid-cycle evaluation to help school districts make better decisions. She leads a team that has developed an online toolkit, the Ed Tech RCE Coach, to help school districts and other users conduct rigorous, quick-turnaround evaluations of education technologies they use in schools. She holds a PhD in economics and public policy from the University of Michigan.
Ali Jafari is currently working as a Professor of Computer and Information Technology at the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology and as the Director of the CyberLab at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). Ali Jafari earned his BS in Business Administration from the University of Isfahan, Iran, before he moved to the United States to pursue a MS in Media Technology at the University of Wisconsin. He completed his doctorate studies in Telecommunications and Mass Communication from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. He is also a serial entrepreneur well known for his research and entrepreneurship in the area of Information Technology (IT) and Learning management systems.
Alison R. Griffin has more than 15 years of experience in higher education policy. As senior vice president, External and Government Relations, she manages external affairs and thought leadership events for Strada Education NetworkSM and its companies. She coordinates government relations activities at the national level and builds and maintains key relationships with higher education stakeholders. Griffin also is project manager for the Education Consumer PulseTM by Gallup and Strada Education Network.
Griffin’s work at Strada Education advances proposals and ideas that support Completion With a Purpose®, enhancing student success in college — or other postsecondary programs — and connecting graduates to rewarding careers and fulfilling lives. She joined Strada Education, then known as USA Funds®, as vice president, Policy Research, in January 2014. Previously, Griffin was the founder and principal of Miles Above Strategies, a Denver-based higher education policy and government relations practice.
She has served as the higher education policy adviser to the chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Education and the Workforce; guided state policy development for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities; and supported higher education clients as senior associate with HCM Strategists, a Washington, D.C., public policy and advocacy consulting firm.
Griffin serves on several national and local nonprofit boards, including those for Southern Methodist University Simmons School of Education and Peak to Peak K-12 Charter School. Griffin is the co-founder of Radio Higher Ed, a podcast series focused on higher education policy.
She holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and in organizational behavior and business policy from SMU. Griffin has a master’s degree in college student affairs administration from the University of Georgia.
Anatoly Lezhen exhibits an undying and contagious energy for education innovation. His belief is that innovation in education and education technology is the world’s best opportunity for democratization and growth.
Anatoly is the founding CEO of United Mint Campus – which seeks to disrupt mainstream campus-based higher education. United Mint Campus activates a campus-as-a-platform business model for on-campus internships, skills-bootcamps, and degree studies.
An entrepreneur and an equity markets specialist, Anatoly Lezhen is an expert at identifying market inefficiencies and executing well timed solutions. As a proprietary trader with over a decade of experience, Anatoly has regularly transacted over five million shares daily on the NYSE and NASDAQ markets. He has founded a successful algorithmic trading company, as well as several education technology and media startups. He has been an angel and advisor to multiple start-up companies, which have gone on to raise VC rounds with Greycroft Partners, Mission OG and Osage Venture Partners. He is on the board of directors at St. Ann’s Warehouse and is an avid fan of world theater and architecture.
André Dua is a Senior Partner in McKinsey and Company’s New York office. He is the Founding Chairman of McKinsey Academy, a digital platform designed to change the way people are prepared for the world of work in the private, public, and social sectors. McKinsey Academy has built a distinctive digital learning platform with edX, and created a set of rich courses and (blended) programs on management and leadership taught by leading business practitioners.
Andre is particularly focused on lead transformational change, capability building in global organizations, and at scale leadership development. He is currently leading major leadership development programs for numerous global clients.
Also in the world of education, he previously co-led McKinsey’s education practice, and worked on a range of issues for global and domestic universities both public and private. His work spans university strategy, program review, R&D strategy, campus master planning, and the future of higher education. His current passion in education is the application of big data techniques to college completion (think Moneyball for higher education). He is the author or co-author of numerous articles, including “5 Ways to Make College More Affordable for All Americans” in The Atlantic and “Embrace Parallel Universes” for Time.com. For many years, he was also a partner in McKinsey’s High Tech Practice.
Prior to joining McKinsey, Mr. Dua was a Research Fellow at the Yale Law School. While there, he co-authored Sustaining the Asia Pacific Miracle—Environmental Protection and Economic Integration, for which he received a grant from the MacArthur Foundation.
Andre Agassi was the former #1 Tennis Player in the World and is the founder of the Andre Agassi Foundation for Education. Andre is considered to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time having won eight Grand Slam tennis titles and the BBC calling him “perhaps the biggest worldwide star in that sports history.” A dedicated philanthropist, Agassi spends much of his time these days working on educational programs and initiatives. In 1994, he founded the Andre Agassi Foundation for Education–which provides at-risk children in Southern Nevada with educational opportunities and recreational activities. Raising more than $185 million dollars since its inception, the Foundation has launched several groundbreaking programs, including Andre Agassi Boys and Girls Club, the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy and more recently, the Turner-Agassi Charter School Facilities Fund.
André Thomas has spent over 20 years in CGI production and was formerly the Head of Graphics – Football for EA Sports Football games (NCAA, Madden, Head Coach, NFL Tour). The Madden franchise is the longest running and most successful sports franchise in the history of the games industry. After finishing his education and working for a few years in Germany, André was able to turn his passion for Computer Graphics into a career in 1994. André created graphics for such notable feature films as Men in Black, Con Air, Independence Day, and Tomorrow Never Dies. In 1997, he moved to London where he worked for 7 years on live action features and commercials. He worked on the Disney-backed, all CG-3D feature film Valiant in 2003. After the completion of Valiant, André joined DNA Productions in Dallas where he worked on the CG feature Ant Bully and oversaw the shading and rendering of the movie. In 2007, André relocated to Orlando, Florida were he joined Electronic Arts – Tiburon and worked on over 15 shipped football games for the majority of platforms.
André joined the faculty of the Visualization department in the College of Architecture at Texas A&M University in January of 2014, where he is currently teaching Game Design, Game Development and interactive graphics techniques and established the Learning Interactive Visualization Experience lab – LIVE lab http://live.viz.tamu. edu/.
André founded Triseum in Texas in 2014 to address a pressing need in higher education and fulfill a lifelong dream.
Dr. Andrew Ng joined Baidu in May 2014 as chief scientist. He is responsible for driving the company’s global AI strategy and infrastructure. He leads Baidu Research in Beijing and Silicon Valley as well as technical teams in the areas of speech, big data and image search. In addition to his role at Baidu, Dr. Ng is an adjunct professor in the computer science department at Stanford University. In 2011 he led the development of Stanford’s Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) platform and taught an online machine learning class that was offered to over 100,000 students. This led to the co-founding of Coursera, where he continues to serve as chairman. Previously, Dr. Ng was the founding lead of the Google Brain deep learning project. Dr. Ng has authored or co-authored over 100 research papers in machine learning, robotics and related fields. In 2013 he was named to the Time 100 list of the most influential persons in the world. He holds degrees from Carnegie Mellon University, MIT and the University of California, Berkeley.
Andrew has served as Nord Anglia Education’s Chief Executive Officer and as a member of the Nord Anglia Education board since April 2003. Under his leadership, the company has grown into the world’s leading premium schools organisation, currently educating over 37,000 students between the ages of 3 and 18 years old in 43 schools worldwide. Prior to this, he served for three years as Chief Executive Officer of easyCar.com, an international online automobile rental company, following a 13 year tenure at TNT Express UK where he served in a variety of positions, including Division Managing Director. Mr. Fitzmaurice graduated magna cum laude from the University of Wales, Cardiff with a degree in economics.
Andrew Smith was recently named Chief Strategy Officer for Rowan-Salisbury Schools in Salisbury, NC. In his new role, Andrew assist the superintendent in developing, communicating, executing, and sustaining district strategic initiatives, as well as, fostering collaborative efforts with internal and external stakeholders. Andrew previously served for three years as director of digital innovation also in Rowan-Salisbury Schools. Andrew oversee the district’s thirty-five technology facilitators and is charged with leading the district’s eleven million dollar 1:1 digital transformation, as well as, implementing innovative cutting edge technologies and the district’s professional development. Andrew received a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Wake Forest University in 2008 and 2009, respectively, with degrees in biology and secondary education. More recently, Andrew received a degree in administration and supervision from Johns Hopkins University. During his time as a graduate student he conducted research on technological influence in the classroom. Andrew is currently a doctoral candidate at Johns Hopkins University earning a degree in Entrepreneurial Leadership in Education. Before entering administration, Andrew taught biology and forensics at East Rowan High School for four years. In 2011, Andrew joined Wake Forest University as an adjunct faculty member where he teaches Instructional Design, Assessment, and Technology. Additionally, Andrew has presented at numerous local, regional and international conferences including: NCTIES, Texas Instruments T3, MOBILE, FETC, NSTA, CUE, EdNET, Apple Inc. and ISTE. In his free time, Andrew is a pilot and enjoys flipping residential properties. Andrew is happily married to the girl of his dreams, Rachel, and has a beautiful baby boy – Noah.
Andrew S. Rosen is Chairman and CEO of Kaplan, Inc., among the largest, most diverse global education organizations and the largest subsidiary of Graham Holdings Company. He also serves as Executive Vice President of Graham Holdings Company.
Throughout his two decade career at Kaplan, Rosen has helped pioneer much of the company’s innovation and growth, with a focus on student success and outcomes. These include the founding of Concord Law School, the first fully online law school in the U.S.; the development of Kaplan University from a few dozen to more than 50,000 online students; and the creation of new blended online and classroom-based learning opportunities for both working adults and test preparation students.
An advocate for adult learners, Rosen is a well-known voice in the media and other public forums about the challenges facing higher education today.
Rosen is the author of “Change.edu: Rebooting for the new talent economy,” which details the history of innovation in American higher education and lays out a prescription for restoring its pre-eminence by focusing anew on the goals of learning outcomes, access, affordability, and accountability.
Since its publication, “Change.edu” has earned positive reviews in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, The Washington Post, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Inside Higher Ed, and generated praise from a range of education thought leaders, including former New York City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein and bestselling author Clay Christensen. Business leader and philanthropist Bill Gates touts the book as “truly important for the debate on what needs to be done to improve the success of post-secondary education in America.” Learn more about the book at www.change-edu.com.
Rosen first joined Kaplan in 1992, holding various management and leadership roles before serving as the company’s Chairman and CEO from 2008 until April 2014, when he stepped down from his role as CEO to become Executive Vice President of Graham Holdings Company. He again assumed the role of Kaplan’s CEO in August 2015, and continues as GHC’s Executive Vice President.
Prior to Kaplan, Rosen had been Assistant Counsel at Newsweek after earlier serving as a staff attorney for The Washington Post newspaper. Before joining The Washington Post Company (now Graham Holdings Company) in 1986, Rosen clerked for the Hon. Levin H. Campbell, Chief Judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit (Boston, MA) after graduating from Yale Law School. He has an A.B. degree from Duke University.
A resident of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Rosen is actively involved in a number of regional business and civic organizations. He currently serves on the boards of Enterprise Florida, Pine Crest School, the Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale, the Broward Workshop, and the Council for Educational Change. He is also a member of the CEO Council of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance (Broward County).
Andy has been a CEO of technology companies for the last 28 years. His experience includes forming multi-discipline teams that create and commercialize innovative technologies, developing successful go-to-market strategies, raising equity based funding, generating and protecting intellectual property, and creating sustainable production facilities. Andy‘s interest in education was first stimulated by the discovery that his daughter was dyslexic. He dove into research on not only dyslexia, but also literature on the neurology of reading and early learning. Square Panda represents the perfect alignment of his business and technical acumen with his personal passion. He believes that the tools of technology (cloud-based data, wireless connectivity, high resolution audio and visual displays, and deep learning) can be systematically purposed to impact early learners by providing customized learning curriculum that addresses their individual needs and learning styles.
Ann Kirschner is University Professor at The City University of New York and president of Comma International, consultants in technology and education. She was the Dean of Macaulay Honors College at CUNY and Strategic Advisor to the Chancellor. She was founding director of the Women in Technology and Entrepreneurship (WiTNY) initiative at CUNY and Cornell Tech. She is a veteran of four start-ups in cable, satellite, and online. She was the first digital strategist for the National Football League, where she launched NFL.COM and SUPERBOWL.COM. A pioneer in e-learning, she founded FATHOM with Columbia University, London School of Economics, and other leading institutions.
Ann Kirschner serves on the board of Strategic Cyber Ventures and Cricket Media. Her nonprofit boards include Public Agenda, Footsteps, the Paul and Daisy Soros Foundation, and FIRSTnyc. She is the author of Sala’s Gift: My Mother’s Holocaust Story (2006) and Lady at the OK Corral: the True Story of Josephine Marcus Earp (2013), and a frequent speaker and writer on innovation in media, technology, and education.
Following your career path could perhaps be similar to an “adaptive computerized” test. You cannot foresee the destination until you experience each step along the way. Ann Linson’s journey to the superintendency seat began with her first career choice as a secretary at The Miami University where after less than a year, she discovered her talents could be developed in a direction that allowed her to shape the future of youth. Earning her bachelors, masters, and ED.S. from Ball State University allowed Ann to teach business courses at the high school and post-secondary level for 18 years and later become a CTE assistant director, high school principal, assistant superintendent, and in her current position as superintendent of East Noble School Corporation located in Kendallville, Indiana.
Recognizing the value of student driven, personalized learning, as a first year superintendent, Ann led her district through a 1:1 computer integration transition in 2011 by designing financial and academic systems to provide every student in grades K-12 a technology device to be taken home daily and through the summer (grades 6-12). Students, staff, and the community recognize this tool as a natural part of instruction that is used to develop their academic skills as well as creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking skills in a global educational environment. In 2011, providing a student with a technology device was “different” for this community. To help the community move through the “what if” and “we can’t” stages, Ann used the “95 percent rule” as depicted in her TED Talk “How 95 is better than 100.” http://tinyurl.com/AnnLinsonTEDx
East Noble School Corporation is a member of the Digital Promise, League of Innovative Schools. Ann was selected as one of 20 superintendents for the Speak Up Shout Out Award in July, 2016; selected as one of 12 superintendents to participate in the Future Ready Superintendent Briefing with the U.S. Department of Education Secretary, October 2016; selected to attend the “Connected Superintendents Summit” at the White House in 2014, and named a NSBA Technology Leadership Network “20 to Watch Educator” for 2012-2013. Ann was also recently named to AASA’s newest Superintendent “Redefining Ready” Leadership Cohort.
As co-founder of rSmart, Tony Potts brings more than 17 years of experience in education technology. After graduating from Arizona State University with an engineering technology degree focused on interactive computer graphics, Tony wrote seven computer books on subjects ranging from Java development to 3D graphics, then hired by his publisher (Coriolis Books) to edit their programming magazine (Visual Developer) as well as run their IT department which included creating their first web presence. In his most recent role as Chief Technology Officer for rSmart, Tony played a leadership role in the development and delivery of Sakai and Kuali open source software and services.
As managing partner at Emerson Collective, former U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan returns to Chicago on a mission to improve the lives of young adults in his hometown. Through partnerships with local business leaders, community organizers, and nonprofit groups, Duncan aims to create job and life opportunities for disconnected youth between the ages of 17 and 24.
Prior to joining the Obama Administration, Duncan served as chief executive officer of Chicago Public Schools. From 2001 to 2008, Duncan won praise for uniting the city’s stakeholders behind an education agenda that included opening 100 new schools; expanding after-school, summer learning, early childhood, and college access programs; dramatically boosting the caliber of teachers; and building public-private partnerships around a variety of education initiatives. Duncan graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1987, majoring in sociology. At Harvard he served as co-captain of the basketball team and was named a first team Academic All-American.
Emerson Collective is an organization dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity so people can live to their full potential. Established by Laurene Powell Jobs, Emerson Collective centers its work on education, immigration reform, the environment and other social justice initiatives.
Asif heads the Learning Solutions engineering organization at LinkedIn, leading the lynda.com organization that was acquired by LinkedIn in 2015, as well as the recently released LinkedIn Learning product. Prior to that, he was a founding member for A9.com, a wholly owned subsidiary of Amazon.com and was the General Manager for Amazon CloudSearch.
Aylon Samouha is co-founder of Transcend, a non-profit organization dedicated to partnering with practitioners to build and replicate breakthrough school models. Aylon has been a design provocateur providing strategy and design services to education organizations, schools, and foundations. Most recently, Aylon has been designing and building two new “Greenfield” school models for the Achievement First Network, which are being piloted in the 2015-16 school year. He also led the field research for Charter School Growth Fund and the Clay Christensen Institute for the 2014 publication, “Schools and Software: What’s Now, What’s Next”. In 2013, Aylonpioneered the Chicago Breakthrough Schools Fellowship in conjunction with New Schools for Chicago, NGLC, and the Broad Foundation.
Prior to co-founding Transcend, Aylon served as Chief Schools Officer at Rocketship Education; leading the highest performing network of low-income schools in the state of California, designing the academic model and blended learning approach, and growing the network from 3 to 7 schools. Aylon also spent several years as a Senior Vice President at Teach For America, leading pre-service institutes and in-service support for corps members in their 2-year teaching commitments during a period of growth from 4,000 to 8,000 corps members.
After graduating from Columbia University with a BA in English, Aylon spent the first part of his career at Score Educational Centers working with families, leading K-8 learning centers and ultimately managing 60+ branches across the country.
Aylon is a proud husband and father and an accomplished jazz guitarist with two released albums and regular performances throughout the Midwest.
Barbara J Sahakian is Professor of Clinical Neuropsychology at the University of Cambridge Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute. She is also an Honorary Clinical Psychologist at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge. She holds a PhD and a DSc from the University of Cambridge. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences. Sahakian co-invented the neuropsychological CANTAB tests. She serves as a Senior Consultant to Cambridge Cognition, a University of Cambridge spin-out that provides CANTAB (www.cantab.com). She is also a Consultant for Peak (Brainbow) (https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/peak-brain-training/id806223188?mt=8). There is now the Cambridge University & Peak Advanced Training Plan and the Wizard memory game. Sahakian has contributed to Neuroscience and Mental Health Government Policy and has spoken on resilience, brain health, neuroscience and mental health at the World Economic Forum, Davos, 2014. She is a member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council on Brain Research.
In 2016, she was a recipient of the Robert Sommer Award and the International College of Neuropsychopharmacology (CINP) Ethics Prize. Sahakian is also a Member of the International Expert Jury for the 2017 Else Kröner-Fresenius-Stiftung Prize “dedicated to the biological basis of psychiatric diseases”. She is co-author of ‘Bad Moves: How decision making goes wrong and the ethics of smart drugs’ (Oxford University Press, 2013) and of ‘Sex, Lies and Brain Scans. How fMRI reveals what really goes on in our minds’ (OUP, 2017). She is co-editor of The Oxford Handbook of Neuroethics (OUP, 2011) and Translational Neuropsychopharmacology (Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences) (Springer International Publishing, 2016).
Ben Nelson is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Minerva Project, a reinvented university experience for the brightest and most motivated students.
Previously, Ben spent more than 10 years at Snapfish seeing the company through from an idea to the world’s largest personal publishing service. With over 42 million transactions across 22 countries, nearly five times its closest competitor, Snapfish today is among the top handful of e-commerce services in the world. Ben was Snapfish’s CEO from 2005 to June 2010, beginning his tenure by leading Snapfish’s sale to Hewlett Packard for $300M. Ben joined Snapfish at the end of 1999 as leader of the company’s corporate development operations and less than one year later took over company-wide responsibilities for finance.
Prior to joining Snapfish, Ben was President and CEO of Community Ventures, a network of locally branded portals for America’s communities. Previously, as a consultant, Ben was instrumental in the launching of several ventures within both large and emerging companies.
Ben holds a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated with honors. It was at Penn that Ben first realized his passion for reforming undergraduate education. After creating a blueprint for curricular reform in his first year of school, Ben went on to become the chair of the Student Committee on Undergraduate Education (SCUE), a pedagogical think tank that is the oldest and only non-elected student government body at Penn.
Founder and CEO of Quero Education, the leading online marketplace for higher education in Brazil. Quero is a profitable startup, with more than 150 employees, and was the first Brazilian EdTech startup to be backed by Y Combinator (Summer 2016).
Betsy Corcoran is co-founder and CEO of EdSurge, an award-winning go-to resource on education technology. EdSurge delivers news for educators and entrepreneurs as well as top edtech job opportunities. Its Edtech Concierge service gives school leaders confidence when they select technology. Betsy has received national recognition for her work as a journalist. She’s been a staff writer and editor for Scientific American magazine, the Washington Post and Forbes. She lives in California where her children attend public school. She is also a Fellow with the Pahara Institute.
Bharat N. Anand is the Henry R. Byers Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, and the faculty chair of HBX, the school’s innovative digital learning initiative that he helped create.
Professor Anand is an expert in digital strategy and corporate strategy. He created Harvard Business School’s first executive program on digital strategies for media companies. He has written over fifty articles and case studies, many in the top journals in economics, strategy, and marketing. His research and case writing has received various awards, and his work has been profiled in numerous media outlets. He has advised leading organizations and entrepreneurs worldwide.
Professor Anand received his B.A. in economics from Harvard College magna cum laude, and his PhD in economics from Princeton University. He has served as faculty head for the required strategy course in the MBA program at HBS, and currently serves as faculty chair of various executive programs at the school. He is a recipient of HBS’ Greenhill Award for outstanding contributions to the school. He is a renowned teacher, and a two-time winner of the “best teacher award” at Harvard Business School.
His new book, The Content Trap: A Strategist’s Guide to Digital Change, was published by Penguin Random House in October 2016, and was named as one of Fast Company’s Ten Best Business Books of 2016.
Bill is proud to serve as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of Blackboard. With his experience leading global technology businesses, Bill is deeply committed to developing an industry-leading suite of solutions and products serving students and educators, and innovating on their behalf to expand student reach and improve learning outcomes within the education community.
Prior to joining Blackboard, he served as President and CEO of SRA International, where he fostered a culture of innovation that emphasized anticipating customer needs, and enhanced the company’s portfolio in cyber security, cloud computing, mobilization, agile system development, ERP and data analytics. Previously, Bill served as President and CEO of DynCorp International, a global government services provider. He has also held senior leadership positions at BAE Systems, Boeing, and Hughes, where he led global government and commercial technology businesses.
Bill holds a Bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of California at Davis and Master’s and Doctorate degrees in aeronautics and astronautics from Stanford University. He also earned a Master’s degree in business administration from the Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA. He currently serves on the UCLA Anderson School Board of Visitors and as Director Emeritus on the Board of the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation, and is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.
Bill lives in Northern Virginia with his wife of 17 years, Darrin, and their two children. Bill and Darrin are both avid equestrians and active land conservationists, and Bill enjoys skiing with his children when their busy schedules allow. Blackboard’s core values, including putting customers first, embracing innovation, and making a difference in the world, resonate deeply with Bill. As a third-generation aerospace engineer, he learned early on the importance of leading with absolute integrity, without fear of failure, and with a focus on solving customers’ toughest challenges. At Blackboard, these values translate into doing the right thing for customers by thinking big, innovating on their behalf and giving back to our communities.
Brandon is the Co-founder and COO of Shield AI, a San Diego based startup whose mission is to protect service members and innocent civilians with artificially intelligent systems. Shield’s goal is to reduce civilian and US military casualties to 0 by 2030 with regards to ground combat operations. Brandon proudly served in the US Navy for seven years prior to Shield AI. He served as a Navy SEAL with two deployments to Afghanistan and one to the Pacific Theater. In that role he served as the mission commander and lead advisor for a 927-man Afghan Commando battalion. He led 130 combined Afghan Commando and US Special Operations Forces in Afghanistan on many high risk combat operations. Previously, he was the assistant chief engineer aboard the USS Pearl Harbor (LSD-52) and deployed to the Persian Gulf. He earned his mechanical engineering degree from the United States Naval Academy. He is also earning his MBA at Harvard Business School.
Brian Greenberg is the CEO of the Silicon Schools Fund, a non-profit investment fund launching the next generation of personalized learning schools in the Bay Area of California. Silicon Schools Fund is on pace to support the launch of over 65 schools serving over 35,000 students and helping to create some of the most innovative school models emerging in the country. Brian is a former charter school leader, having launched one of the top-ranked charter high schools in the state of California, and served as the Chief Academic Officer of a network of charters. Brian has worked as a teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District, in politics on statewide and national campaigns, and in higher education at Carnegie Mellon University. A speaker nationally on personalized learning, education, and venture philanthropy, Brian is also the co-creator of the Coursera and Khan Academy MOOC on blended learning, a Stanford University Principal Fellow, and an Aspen Institute Pahara Fellow. Brian received his B.A. from Dartmouth College and an M.Ed. from Harvard University.
Brian Grey is President and CEO of Remind.com, the largest network of K-12 teachers, students, parents, and administrators in the U.S. With more than 22 million monthly active users, Remind’s mobile messaging platform is rapidly emerging as a vital service that enables communication and collaboration across all stakeholders who share Remind’s vision to give every student an opportunity to succeed.
Prior to joining Remind, Brian served as a technology/digital media startup company advisor and investor, serving as an independent CEO advisor to 20 startup CEOs representing a wide array of industries and venture capital investors including Accel Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Battery Ventures, GGV Capital, Greylock Partners, Khosla Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, Redpoint Ventures, Social Capital, and Trinity Ventures.
Brian served as CEO at Bleacher Report, Inc., where he led the strategic direction and day-to-day operation of Bleacher Report’s next generation sports publishing platform, including raising two rounds of venture funding and the successful sale of the company to Time Warner in August 2012. A veteran of the digital media space, he joined Bleacher Report in June 2010 following a successful leadership tenure as Senior Vice President & General Manager of FOX Sports Interactive where he oversaw FOX Sports’ digital businesses and spearheaded the expansion of original video production and programming. Prior to FOX Sports, Brian was GM of Yahoo! Sports, where he directed the site’s push into original editorial programming and led Yahoo!’s rise to the number one position in fantasy sports. Before joining Yahoo!, he worked in digital media product management and business development at Nike, Inc., Netscape, and Shutterfly, Inc.
Prior to beginning his business career, Brian coached college baseball at U.C. Santa Barbara and later scouted for the Chicago White Sox. Brian holds a B.A. in Economics and Mathematics from Pacific University, an M.A. in Economics from the University of California at Santa Barbara, and an M.B.A. from UCLA’s Andersen School of Management. He lives in San Francisco with his wife Paige and his daughters Zeli and Ava.
Brian Rogove is the Founder & Chief Executive Officer of ChangedEDU Holdings. Headquartered in Singapore, ChangedEDU is a global education platform founded by Mr. Rogove in partnership with Verlinvest, a Belgian investment holding company, which is owned by the Belgian family shareholder control group of AB-Inbev. The ChangedEDU platform is focused on preparing students for a rapidly changing world through highly personalized learning experiences.
Prior to founding ChangeEDU, Brian served as Chief Executive Officer of Asia Pacific for Cognita for over 8 years. Since founding the business in 2008, Brian grew the Asia business from a start-up to representing over 65% of the total Group EBITDA. Brian has invested US$500 million into the Asia Pacific region over the last 8 years across a wide range of both M&A and Greenfield assets in the education sector. Mr. Rogove also led two rounds of private equity investment into Cognita, including the sale of 50% of the company to KKR in 2013. Additionally he led a £280 million public bond offering in 2015, the first for the Company.
Having started and exited several businesses, Brian has over 20 years of experience in the Asia Pacific region and 16 years of experience as an entrepreneur. Prior to joining Cognita, he was a Founding Partner at Tuscan Ventures, a Private Equity firm focused on growth capital investments in India and Greater Asia Pacific. Building on years of business development and operating experience in emerging markets, Brian served on Tuscan’s Investment Committee and led deal sourcing, structuring and execution. Brian was Managing Director, Asia for Coherix, a Venture Capital backed US based start-up technology company. He started his career in Business Development for Loctite Corporation (Henkel).
After earning a Bachelor of Science in Economics from Northern Illinois University, Brian received his MBA from the University of Chicago.
Having grown up in a family of educators, Brittany believes passionately in the potential of all young people and the power of schooling to shape their futures. Prior to joining Transcend, Brittany worked at Denver Public Schools where she launched and ran an incubator for principals engaged in innovative and community-based school redesign efforts. In that role, Brittany led the district’s redesign efforts and partnered with other district leaders to build an eco-system that is supportive of holistic and sustaining student outcomes. Her work was informed by prior experiences in and outside of education. She worked previously as the Director of 21st Century Learning at Teach For America, as a Management Consultant at Oliver Wyman, and she began her career as a 6th grade English teacher in San Francisco, CA. Brittany has been on the front lines of numerous school design and redesign projects, including as the lead designer and researcher for The New School of San Francisco – an inquiry-based elementary school that opened in Fall 2015 in partnership with the Exploratorium Museum. Brittany holds a doctorate degree in Education Leadership from Harvard University, and Masters and Bachelors degrees from the University of Pennsylvania where she studied Public Policy and Music.
Burck launched StraighterLine in 2009 to help students lower the cost and risk of obtaining a college degree and helps colleges attract and retain students. Ten years before launching StraighterLine he co-founded SMARTHINKING, the largest online tutoring provider for schools and colleges which is now owned by Pearson. Burck has written chapters for three books on education policy for the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He is a member of the American Enterprise Institute’s Higher Education Working Group. Prior to starting SMARTHINKING, Burck was independent consultant and journalist Burck holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and a B.A. from Williams College.
Byju Raveendran is the Founder and CEO of India’s largest Ed-tech Company, BYJU’s that is reinventing how students learn, through its learning app. An entrepreneur by chance and a teacher by choice, he is a two-time CAT 100 percentile holder and National Math Olympiad winner.
Byju took the CAT exam in 2003 with his friends and scored 100 percentile. However, he decided against pursuing an MBA. He was working as a service engineer abroad back then and all of this happened during the 2 month break that he got from his job.
In 2005, he wrote the CAT exam without any preparation yet again and scored a 100 percentile again. However unlike last time, he appeared for IIM-A,B,C interviews and cleared all of them. This was when he realized that there was something special about the way he approached CAT which sets him apart from the lakhs who prepared and appeared for the exam under so much pressure.
Byju saw potential in helping students prepare for CAT rather than doing an MBA himself. He started BYJU’s CAT classes in 2008. His unique teaching style and focus on learning made him a household brand amongst students and parents in a span of 4 years. Soon, he was jettisoning across the country teaching a large number of students, not in classrooms, but in auditoriums and stadiums.
In-between his trips, he was in touch with some of the best minds in the country (crème-de-la-crème) who were preparing for CAT. The key management and the core team at BYJU’S was formed by his students – some of them who went on to join the IIMs and would eventually find their final calling in Education and come back to join Byju, while some of them would stay on and join him immediately in this mission of changing the way people learn.
From his test prep experience, Byju realized that if he really wanted to make an impact in India’s education system, he would have to do it at the K-12 level, when students are grappling with fundamentals. Also, he harnessed the power of technology, which could offer him access to a large number of students together.
In the year 2009, Byju undertook his first experiment with technology by launching online video based learning for CAT through VSAT. In 2011, the company was incorporated (Think and Learn Pvt Ltd) with focus on the K-12 space.
However, the real breakthrough was in 2015 with the launch of the BYJU’s learning app which has seen a phenomenal engagement, with 7 million downloads and reaches over 1700 cities and town in the country so far. The learning app makes use of original content, watch-and-learn videos, rich animations and interactive simulations that, as opposed to rote memorization, make learning contextual and visual. The app also adapts to the unique learning style of each student, inviting them to explore different concepts.
As he rightly says, “If you want to make a real impact on the way students learn, if you want to make them fall in love with learning, you need to start early—when they start feeling the subject, the crucial years which form the strong foundation for lifelong learning.”
Byron was inspired by a diverse set of experiencesto conceive and co-found Opportunity@Work in 2015. From his large extended family to a diverse range of friends in his “hometowns” of Detroit, Michigan and Phoenix, Arizona, he knows so many people who found themselves stuck, unable to contribute their full talents, nor to be rewarded for them. As an economist, he sees this waste of talent as a classic market failure. From his extensive work advising businesses, he knows the internal processes, constraints and risk aversion that shape employer behavior. In his public service, he has seen both the catalytic possibilities and the significant limits of workforce policy solutions. He has seen heroic non-profit efforts achieve inclusion but fall short of scale. Byron has never met a Mayor or Governor of either party who doesn’t want to bring good jobs to her or his community, and is struck by the massive and inclusive economic benefits of re-wiring the labor market.
Prior to co-founding Opportunity@Work,Byron served for 2 years in the White House as Deputy Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, where his policy portfolio included job creation and labor markets, skills and workforce policies, innovation, investment, infrastructure, transportation and goods movement.
Until 2013, Byron was a senior partner at McKinsey & Company in Washington DC and in Los Angeles, where he was elected Principal in 1999 and Director in 2005. Over 20 years at McKinsey, he worked primarily in the fields of technology & communications, information & media, services-based businesses, education, economic development, and innovation, leading McKinsey’s High Tech Services sector from 2002 to 2006, and its global Social Sector from 2007 to 2012. He was also co-author of several McKinsey Global Institute reports, including Changing the Fortunes of America’s Workforce (2009), Growth and Renewal in the United States: Retooling America’s Economic Engine (2011), and An Economy That Works: Job Creation and America’s Future (2011), and Help Wanted: the Future of Work in Advanced Economies (2012). His professional experience prior to McKinsey was as an economist at LMC International, Oxford University, and the African Development Bank. He is the author of The Economics of International Payments Unions and Clearinghouses (MacMillan Press, 1995).
Until his appointment at the White House, Byron was active in a number of not-for-profit organizations, serving as board chairman of Hope Street Group, and as a member of the boards of trustees of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and Yale University. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Pacific Council on International Policy.
Byron earned a B.A. summa cum laude in economics and political science from Yale University, where he was awarded a Truman Scholarship and the James Gordon
Bennet Prize, and a M. Phil. and D.Phil. in economics from Oxford University, as a Marshall Scholar.
Candace Thille is the founding director of the Open Learning Initiative (OLI) at Carnegie Mellon University and at Stanford University. She is a senior research fellow in the Office of the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning and an assistant professor in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. Her focus is in applying the results from research in the science of learning to the design and evaluation of open web-based learning environments and in using those environments to conduct research in human learning. Dr. Thille serves on the board of directors of the Association of American Colleges and Universities; as a fellow of the International Society for Design and Development in Education; on the Assessment 2020 Task Force of the American Board of Internal Medicine; on the advisory council for the Association of American Universities STEM initiative; and on the advisory council for the National Science Foundation Directorate for Education and Human Resources. She served on the working group of the President¹s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) that produced the Engage to Excel report. She served on the U.S. Department of Education working groups, co-authoring the 2010 and 2015 National Education Technology Plans. She was recently named one of The Sixteen Most Innovative People in Higher Education by the Washington Monthly.
As Vice President of Analytics, Carlo Salerno identifies and leverages postsecondary education data to help Strada Education Nework advance its Completion With a Purpose mission.
Carlo’s 15 years of experience in the postsecondary education space is diverse. He’s done policy analysis for the federal government, co-founded a boutique education analytics company, worked as an international education consultant to European and African education ministries and conducted higher education policy analysis for groups as diverse as the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA), General Assembly, and the American Action Forum. In recent years he’s authored background research on income share agreements and social impact bonds for the Miller Center’s National Commission on Financing 21st Century Higher Education and the challenges of information collection burden for the U.S. Senate HELP Committee’s Task Force on Federal Regulation of Higher Education.
Carlo’s writing has been featured in Inside Higher Ed, Forbes and the Huffington Post. Last year LinkedIn named him one of the Top 10 must-know writers in education. He has a B.B.A. in economics from Eastern Michigan University (’97) and a Ph.D. in higher education from the Pennsylvania State University (’02).
Carlos Rodríguez-Pastor is Chairman of Intercorp and General Partner of Nexus Group.
Intercorp and Nexus Group invest primarily in Peru and the Andean Region and manage portfolio companies in financial services, retail, real estate, education, leisure and entertainment and packaging with over 61,000 team members and revenues of approximately US$ 5 billion.
Mr. Rodríguez-Pastor is also co-founder and Chairman of Innova Schools, founder of PeruChamps, member of The Global Advisory Board of Khan Academy, member of the Board of Trustees at Dartmouth College and member of The Global Advisory Council at Harvard University.
Mr. Rodríguez-Pastor graduated with a BA in Social Sciences from the University of California at Berkeley in 1983 and obtained an MBA from the Tuck School at Dartmouth College in 1988.
Carmita (Vaughan) Semaan is Founder and President of The Surge Institute. The Surge Fellowship, the Institute’s signature program, is transforming education by training, supporting, connecting and elevating emerging education leaders of color. Surge strengthens the pipeline of diverse talent and ensures a next wave of leaders that represent the populations that education reform and equity efforts seek to serve.
Carmita’s career started in Corporate America where she quickly advanced in global marketing, strategic planning, and engineering/operations management for Fortune 500 companies including Procter and Gamble and Danaher Corporation. However, corporate could not contain her desire to lead high-impact initiatives that benefit urban youth and transform urban communities – so she blazed a trail within the non-profit sector, primarily in K-12 urban education. Carmita’s commitment to empowering our country’s most under-served young people by providing them with pathways to excellence through education and holistic supports led her to a decade of executive service, driving results for visionary leaders including Alma Powell, Gen. Colin Powell and Arne Duncan, the former US Secretary of Education.
Carmita holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan. She received a 2016 Chicago Business Journal’s Women of Influence Award and was selected as a 2013 Marshall Memorial Fellow by the German Marshall Fund. She was a 2010 Pahara Aspen Fellow, a 2009 Leadership Greater Chicago Fellow, and she is a graduate of the Broad Residency of Urban Education.
Carol Stuckey is Executive Director of Strategic Growth Initiatives at the Division of Continuing Education, Harvard University, which serves 20K students on an annual basis. In this role she is responsible for identifying new areas of growth for the Division and for incubating and developing new academic programs including credit-bearing certificates and degrees and noncredit programs.
Carol supervises a staff of 37 and is responsible for leading the market research and competitive analysis that helps define, evaluate, and launch new partnerships and opportunities for the division. She oversees the Division’s Professional Development Programs executive education line of business.
Carol defines and oversees all of the marketing strategy and execution, including development of websites, advertising, digital marketing, social media, and media relations. She manages enrollment management, retention, and alumni relations.
Carol has taught a number of marketing courses at Harvard Extension School and Harvard Professional Development and served as a program moderator for corporate clients through Harvard Business Publishing.
Carol has held a variety of positions within the education and consulting industries. She served as associate director in the executive education division of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. There she was responsible for business development, curriculum design, and program execution for corporate clients from the financial services industry. Carol spent six years working as a management consultant for Accenture (formerly Andersen Consulting), where she focused on communications and organization development. She also worked as a senior consultant to higher education institutions at Eduventures, a research and consulting firm serving the education industry.
Caroline Howard is an executive digital producer-editor at Forbes Media and editor of the U.S. 30 Under 30 and America’s Top Colleges. She specializes in education, entrepreneurial women and millennials and philanthropy. She is regular moderator and panelist at SXSWedu and Under 30 Summits, and judge of the Milken-Penn GSE Education Business Plan Competition. Formerly with AOL and People magazine, she graduated from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and lives in New York City.
Caryn Voskuil works in the education studio at IDEO in San Francisco. Caryn takes a dual role working with design teams to help them understand how design and innovation will impact clients as well as working directing with clients to think strategically about what challenges and engagements IDEO can best help them to address. Caryn works specifically with clients where systems design, technology and tool design, and creative confidence can impact education, domestically and internationally.
Before joining IDEO, Caryn worked at a charter school network managing their school model design. She got her start in education as a public school teacher in Washington D.C. with Teach for America. She has stints working for USAID in Ethiopia and a graphic design firm in the Czech Republic. She holds a MA in the Arts of Teaching from American University and a BA in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Casey Green is the founding director of The Campus Computing Project, the largest continuing study of the role of computing, eLearning, and information technology in American higher education. Launched in 1990, Campus Computing is widely cited by both campus officials and corporate executives as a definitive source for data, information, and insight about eLearning and information technology planning and policy issues affecting U.S. colleges and universities. Digital Tweed, Green’s award-wining blog, is published by Inside Higher Ed. Green also moderates and serves as co-producer of TO A DEGREE the postsecondary success podcast of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In October 2002 Green received the first EDUCAUSE Award for Leadership in Public Policy and Practice. The EDUCAUSE award cites his work in creating The Campus Computing Project and recognizes his “prominence in the arena ofnational and international technology agendas, and the linking of higher education to those agendas.”
Cassandra Frangos is an accomplished leader who has successfully generated significant business value, developed top strategic leaders, and built long-term relationships with clients. During her management consulting career, she was an effective business partner with leadership teams of Fortune 500 companies to facilitate organizational change efforts, develop talent and organizational strategies that delivered results. Cassandra has consistently demonstrated success in developing innovative solutions to business challenges that improved performance.
Cassandra is currently the head of Cisco’s Global Executive Talent practice where she is responsible for accelerating the readiness of the talent portfolio (current and next generation) to transform the business and culture. Through trusted partnerships with executives, she is able to deploy innovative solutions for organization design, succession planning, assessment, coaching and development programs that drive business results and innovation. She most recently played an integral role in the 2015 succession planning for Cisco’s CEO, one of the most respected and longest- tenured CEO’s in the tech industry.
Prior to Cisco, Cassandra was head of organization development and learning at a Biotechnology Company. Cassandra was also a management consultant with Watson Wyatt Worldwide and the Human Capital Practice Leader at a management consulting firm led by thought leaders Drs. Kaplan and Norton, founders of the Balanced Scorecard.
Cassandra earned a doctorate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in a joint program with Wharton Business School and the Graduate School of Education. Her research focus was on innovation and organizational practices. She received a dual Masters degree in Organizational Development and Positive Psychology in a joint degree program with Case Western Reserve University and Ashridge Business School. Her undergraduate degree is in Business Administration and Psychology from Northeastern University. She has authored several publications with Harvard Business School Publishing and with leading industry journals.
Cathy Donahoe has been a leader in the human resources field for more than 25 years. At Domo she oversees the recruitment, retention, and management of some of the top talent in the industry. At Domo Cathy has grown the workforce 100% year over year for the past 5 years to 800+ employees. Prior to joining Domo, Cathy served as vice president of human resources at Extend Health, a technology-driven healthcare insurance exchange. Cathy was also part of the Omniture team, where she expanded employee growth into 20+ countries and 28 U.S. states, growing the employee headcount from 87 to 1,100+ in just five years.
Chase Jarvis is widely recognized as one of the most influential photographers of the last 20 years. He’s won awards for his images on 6 continents, including contributions to the Pulitzer Prize winning story SNOWFALL – the acclaimed New York Times interactive story heralded as the “future of journalistic story telling” and an Emmy nomination for his work documenting the music scene in Seattle.
In 2009 he created BEST CAMERA app – the first photo app to share images direct to social networks which was #1 on iTunes, app of the year for Wired Magazine, Macworld and the New York Times, and helped kick off the global photo sharing craze.
He’s currently focused on his work as the founder and CEO of CREATIVELIVE the worlds largest live-streaming education company, with millions of students around the world and more than 2 billion minutes consumed on the platform.
Chip Paucek is the co-founder and CEO of 2U, Inc. (NASDAQ: TWOU), which partners with leading colleges and universities to deliver the world’s best online degree programs. Prior to 2U, Paucek served as CEO of Smarterville, Inc., the parent company of Hooked on Phonics, and prior to that served as vp of business development and then president of Educate Products for Educate, Inc. Paucek began his career in 1993 by co-founding Cerebellum, the media company behind the award-winning educational television program Standard Deviants. In 2004, Paucek served as deputy campaign manager for the successful re-election campaign of U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski. Paucek has earned a number of awards including the E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Goldman Sachs 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs Award and multiple Highest Rated CEO awards from Glassdoor. He holds a BA from George Washington University and is currently enrolled in the 2U-powered MBA@UNC program.
Chris Bennett is a co-founder and the CEO of OnePreschool.com. One Preschool is a network of boutique early childhood programs that combine the quality standards of the best centers with the warmth of an in-home program. We make it easy for teachers to start and operate these programs and for families to find them. One Preschool is venture funded by First Round Capital, Soft Tech VC, Lerer Ventures, 500 Startups, eVentures, FundersClub, and a number of Angels.
Chris Jagers is the CEO and co-founder of Learning Machine, a company pioneering the way for issuing and verifying official records using the blockchain as a notary. The foundation for his work began in 2016 through a collaboration with the MIT Media Lab on an open standard called Blockcerts. Today, Learning Machine is working with countries, companies, and school systems to stand up new credentialing infrastructures that empower individuals by giving them control of their own official records. His mission is to create a world where it is easy to make verifiable claims through this new digital format.
A former teacher of 8 years, a Pahara Institute NextGen Leader, and named as one of the Top 40 Innovators in Educations in 2013 by the Center for Digital Education, Chris is currently leads Learning Innovation at LEAP Innovations. LEAP is a nonprofit in Chicago that supports pilot studies of personalized learning models and tools and provides training space to connect educators, entrepreneurs, learning scientists, and students to develop next-generation models, share ideas, and co-develop solutions. Chris is one of the co-authors of the LEAP Learning Framework and supports school teams in the design and implementation of locally crafted personalized learning models to maximize student potential. He is also a co-founder and on the steering committee of the Community of Innovative Practice, a safe, honest place for practitioners of personalized learning models for equity to discuss challenges in the work. Most recently, Chris led the transition to personalized learning for FirstLine Schools in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Liang-Vergara has taught at all grade levels, been part of teams that have set growth records at many of his former institutions, and has experience in public, private, and charter school institutions. He has been part of many different technical working groups for the US Dept of Education and major foundations supporting the field of personalized learning. Liang-Vergara is a huge Chicago Blackhawks fan and proud father of two crazy boys.
At Digital Promise, Christina leads Marketplace Research focused on improving the quality of evidence about ed-tech effectiveness through pilot evaluations and research capacity building at the school district level. Before joining Digital Promise, Christina led program evaluations for federal and state initiatives and delivered professional development and technical assistance to school districts at Measurement Incorporated. Formerly a high school English teacher, Christina left the classroom to study education research with a desire to improve student outcomes by offering a practitioner’s perspective to research.
Chris Caren joined Turnitin in 2009 as Chief Executive Officer. Chris led the transition of Turnitin from a company focused on plagiarism prevention to one that helps instructors engage students with meaningful feedback throughout the entire writing process. Under his leadership, Turnitin has grown to serve over 30 million students in 140 countries. In 2014, Turnitin was sold to new private equity ownership led by Insight Venture Partners for $752 million. Chris previously worked for Microsoft Corporation as GM of Microsoft Business Solutions, and holds an MBA with distinction from Kellogg Business School and a bachelor of science in engineering from Stanford University.
Colin Bramm is the CEO and Cofounder of Showbie. Colin has been developing learning software for nearly 15 years, initially with local school districts in western Canada. Observing early rollouts of devices in classrooms, Colin worked to build a basic version of Showbie that became a popular homework collection and marking app. The experience enabled Colin and his Cofounder, Roy Pombeiro, to be accepted into the Edtech accelerator ImagineK12 in 2013. Since that time, Colin and his team have built Showbie to be used in over 30K schools in 134 countries. Colin’s mission is to improve student engagement and learning by improving the assessment process.
Colin is a Senior Project Lead at HarvardX, where he helps Harvard professors create online courses. His background is in physics education research, where he has studied early MOOCs and on-campus use of online homework. When not at work, he enjoys cooking, game design, and polictical support. His profile picture shows him next to the world’s smallest municipal park.
Corey Greendale is a managing director specializing in research and investment in software-as-a-service (SaaS) businesses, particularly in human capital technology. He provides research coverage of leading private and publicly traded companies in his sectors. His work has been cited for excellence in the Wall Street Journal’s “Best on the Street” survey, in Forbes, and in the Financial Times. He earned an MBA with high honors from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa.
Craig Maslowsky is an entrepreneur and higher education marketing and enrollment expert. He is founder and CEO of New Ed, an education focused marketing software company based in Troy, NY. Prior to founding New Ed, Craig was a successful higher education marketing executive. For 5 years he managed the marketing, admissions, financial aid, and partnership development efforts for Excelsior College – a 40,000 student, not-for-profit online institution of higher education. He earned a BS in Business Administration from SUNY Geneseo, an MBA from Clarkson University, and is currently working on his dissertation for a Doctor of Education in Higher Education from Northeastern University.
D’Andre Weaver is passionate about helping students realize their dreams. Having served in various school and central office capacities, D’Andre understands the power of high quality teaching, learning, and leadership, and how those factors impact the future trajectories of children in the U.S.
Mr. Weaver is a proud product of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) system, having attended both elementary and high school in Chicago. Upon graduating from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and being recruited by the Champaign Community Unit #4 School District, Mr. Weaver began his career in education as English and AVID Teacher/Coordinator at Centennial High School. Over the course of five years, Mr. Weaver taught Honors English Literature, served as a high school Assistant Principal, coordinated programs that improved the percentage of college eligible students, improved the ACT scores of African American students, tripled the percentage of African American and Hispanic students enrolled and passing Advanced Placement courses, led the AVID program at two high schools, and sent 100% of his AVID students to four-year universities.
In his current role as one of three Community Superintendents in Spring Branch ISD, located in Houston, Texas, Mr. Weaver serves on the District’s senior staff and directly supports 15 principals and 12,000 students. Mr. Weaver is a member of a newly developed leadership team charged with the implementation of an ambitious strategic plan to personalize the learning experiences for the District’s 35,000 students.
Prior to his role in Spring Branch ISD, Mr. Weaver served as the Principal at Gwendolyn Brooks College Preparatory Academy, one of eleven Selective Enrollment High Schools in the Chicago Public Schools system. Brooks serves a population of students that are 99% minority and over 75% low income. During his tenure, graduation rates, college entrance and retention rates, and freshmen on-track rates all improved to all time highs. As a result, U.S. News and World Report recognized Brooks as the #16 best high school in Illinois and awarded the school its second Gold Medal status award. In 2014, Brooks was recognized as having the highest year-to-year growth on ACT in the entire Chicago Public Schools system (from 21 to 23.2). Under Mr. Weaver’s leadership, the number of Advanced Placement and Dual Credit course offerings at Brooks more than doubled, the school had taken on an ambitious approach to STEM education, and as a result of receiving a Next Generation Learning Challenge grant, Mr. Weaver led the development of a school-wide redesign effort to personalize the learning experiences for every student at the school.
Before accepting the position of Principal at Brooks, D’Andre served as an Assistant Principal at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School, ranked the #1 high school in Illinois and the #66 high school in the U.S. according to U.S. News and World Report.
D’Andre is married to his high school sweetheart, is the proud father of two little girls, and is completing his dissertation for a Ph.D. in Education Policy, Organization, and Leadership at the University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign.
Dan Rosensweig joined Chegg in 2010 with a vision for transforming the popular textbook rental service into a leading provider of digital learning services for high school and college students. By leveraging technology, mobility, and connected networks, Chegg today offers a suite of high quality, low cost, personalized and on-demand educational resources that help students pursue, control and improve their own outcomes. As Chairman and CEO of Chegg, Dan commits the company to fulfilling its mission of putting students first and helping them save time, save money and get smarter. Under Dan’s direction, Chegg has become the Student Hub®, a connected learning platform that brings together people who want to learn with the tools and resources that accelerate the achievement of their educational and career goals. Prior to Chegg, Dan served as CEO of Guitar Hero, COO of Yahoo!, and CEO of ZDNet. Dan received a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from Hobart and William Smith College in Geneva, New York. When Dan isn’t attending a Springsteen concert or enjoying quality time with his wife and two daughters, he sits on the Board of Trustees of Colgate University, the Board of Directors for Adobe Systems, Inc., Rent-the-Runway, Fender Guitars, Birchbox and the Advisory Board of the nonprofit DonorsChoose.org. Dan also serves as a Senior Advisor for TPG Growth Ventures.
Dave is the founder and CEO of Mylestone, which ensures your most precious memories are accessible, upon command. Mylestone’s transforms photos, video and audio into narratives that can be recalled via Voice Assistants, such as Amazon’s Alexa.
Previously, Dave was the CEO and co-founder of Smarterer, a skills assessment company acquired by Pluralsight in 2014. Post-acquisition, Dave was the Head of Transactions at Pluralsight, while also serving as a Board Observer. Before co-founding Smarterer in 2010, Dave founded BzzAgent, a social media marketing company, which was acquired by dunnhumby, a division of Tesco (PLC) in 2011. From 2011-2014 Dave sat on the Global Executive Team at dunnhumby, where he led all venture and M&A activity.
Dave shares his drive for technology with his local Boston community as an investor and advisor to dozens of startups, including acting as Venture Partner in seed-stage investment firm Boston Seed Capital. Investments include Grapevine, Promoboxx, Help Scout, Kettle & Fire, Turo, NRG, AdHawk, and Fortified Bike. Dave is Vice Chairman of Boch Center for the Performing Arts, a nonprofit steward of iconic venues, providing arts, entertainment, cultural, and educational experiences to the greater Boston community.
Behind the crazy personality is a guy with a brilliant point-of-view when it comes to building brands and creating genre-disrupting work. Dave Schiff started his agency career at Crispin Porter + Bogusky where his unique talent and unbridled passion quickly led him up the agency ladder. After driving sales for clients like MINI Cooper, Molson and IKEA, he was promoted to Creative Director on Coke Zero and helped engineer the company’s most successful new product launch in 25 years, with the beverage enjoying double-digit growth every quarter since launch. As VP/Executive Creative Director, he steered Under Armour’s most effective new category launch to date, helping the brand gain an instant following in basketball, a sport where it had been a virtual unknown. When Schiff founded Made, he immediately captured the attention of national media. The agency has been featured in The New York Times, USA Today, Inc., Advertising Age, Esquire, Fast Company, Adweek, Los Angeles Times and Forbes. Last year, he was named one of 37 creatives most lusted after by rival agencies. We’ve tethered him to his chair.
Made was created in 2012 with a simple mission to help create more American jobs. They make strategically disruptive, creatively brilliant work that hijacks, subverts or reinvents product categories or, better yet, creates new ones.
It is David Blake’s belief that learning is too important to stay the way it is and he has spent his career innovating higher education and lifelong learning. David is the Co-Founder and CEO of Degreed. Individuals and organizations apply Degreed’s platform to discover the world’s best learning resources and track their learning experience. Prior to Degreed, he helped launch a competency-based, accredited university and was a founding team member at Zinch (acquired by Chegg NASDQ: CHGG). David was selected as a Top EdTech Entrepreneur by the Stanford d.School EdTech Lab which is sponsored by Teach For America and NewSchools Venture Fund. David has been published in Harvard Technology Review, Business Insider, TechCrunch, and Huffington Post. He has spoken around the world on the topic of the future of learning, including at the ASU Education Innovation Summit, EdTech Europe, and at TEDx.
David Levin is the president and CEO of McGraw-Hill Education. Since joining McGraw-Hill Education in April 2014, David has been leading the transformation of the company from a traditional textbook publisher to a learning science company with a vision of unlocking the full potential of each learner through an approach focused on:
Under his leadership, McGraw-Hill Education has moved to combine the science of learning with the art of teaching, harnessing technology in order to enhance learning inside and outside of the classroom and deepen connections between students and teachers. David is committed to renewing the company’s culture, fostering an open, collaborative, and social environment.
Previously, David spent nine years as the chief executive of UBM, a multinational media company headquartered in London. During that time, he repositioned the business and shifted its focus to live events and online communities and away from its legacy magazines. Before joining UBM, David was chief executive of Symbian Software, the software group that built the operating system to power the first generation of smartphones.
David holds a bachelor’s degree in politics, philosophy, and economics from Oxford University and a M.B.A. from Stanford University. He is a frequent speaker on
educational issues and the transition from analog to digital.
David Yaskin, CEO of The Faculty Guild, has been an education technology leader for over 20 years. He is credited with helping to create two new product categories: enterprise course/learning management systems and enterprise student success systems. David is currently launching a new organization focused on providing college student faculty who are great at teaching in order to improve their outcomes.
Most recently, David was the Sr. Vice President for Student Success at Hobsons, a global education company. Hobsons acquired Starfish Retention Solutions in early 2015. David helped to integrate Starfish into Hobsons as well set strategy for Hobsons overall K-20 student success work.
In 2007, David founded Starfish and ran it as its CEO till the sales to Hobsons. Starfish was the leading provider of enterprise student success platforms supporting over 250 colleges and universities, helping more than 4.6 million students. Starfish helped its clients achieve improved student persistence by promoting the effective delivery and evaluation of student support initiatives.
Starfish was recognized by Gartner as one of five Cool Vendors in Education, 2012. Starfish won the Readers’ Choice Award from University Business in 2012, 2013, and 2014 for their Starfish EARLY ALERT™ product. In 2014, Starfish won the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 recognizing Starfish as the 37th fastest growing technology companies in North America.
Prior to Starfish, David was VP of Product Strategy for Blackboard from 1999 to 2007. David conceptualized, developed, and communicated the product road map for Blackboard. During his tenure at Blackboard, he helped transform the company from a successful start-up to the world’s leading provider of e-Learning technology. He is credited with such Blackboard innovations as defining the enterprise course management strategy; pioneering the Blackboard Building Blocks open programming framework; defining the vision for the Community Portal System; and inventing the Blackboard Outcomes System, a platform that unifies the assessment activities of the whole institution.
David holds a B.S. in computer engineering and mathematics from Carnegie Mellon University, awarded 1986.
David is an active innovator and contributor to student success initiatives. David is the author of nine US patents on education technology. He actively mentors a number of CEOs in education technology. In 2013, he was an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2013 Award Finalist in the Greater Washington DC area.
David is President of The Advisory Board Company, a best practices firm that uses a combination of research, technology, and other services to improve the performance of mission-driven organizations. Over his twenty years at the Advisory Board, David has served in multiple roles, including Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer. Today, his broad scope of responsibilities includes running the firm’s Education practice, known as EAB, which was founded in 2007 and has now grown to serve more than 20,000 administrators from over 1,100 colleges and universities. EAB provides educational institutions research (with a library of 5,000 best practices across key problem areas), cloud-based student success and academic performance software (with more than 475 million course records in its platform) and data-enabled enrollment solutions (which drive 8:1 ROI for colleges and universities).
During David’s leadership, the Advisory Board and EAB have garnered wide recognition, including Modern Healthcare magazine’s “Best Places to Work” for eight years running; Forbes’ “Best Management Consulting Firm” and “40 Most Innovative Growth Companies”; Working Mother magazine’s “100 Best Places to Work”; the Human Rights Campaign’s “Best Place to Work” for LGBTQ employees; and a two-time finalist for the Software & Information Industry Association CODiE Awards. David holds an MBA from Stanford University and an BA in History from Princeton University.
Deborah is the Founder and Managing Partner of GSV Acceleration Fund, a venture capital fund investing in the most dynamic entrepreneurs and companies leveraging technology in the global $4.9 trillion education and talent technology sectors. GSV’s premier portfolio of Learning and Talent Technology companies including Andela, Clever, ClassDojo, Course Hero, CreativeLive, Degreed, Lightneer, Pluralsight, Raise, and Turnitin, among others.
A prolific angel investor, Deborah holds over 25 investments in disruptive technology companies. Previously she co-founded GSV Advisors, a boutique advisory firm focused on learning and human capital technology companies. She also co-founded the annual ASU GSV Summit. This event, now in its 8th year, with over 3,500 in attendance, celebrates innovations and innovators across the global education and human capital landscape.
She previously co-founded ThinkEquity Partners, a boutique technology focused investment bank, which was acquired in 2007 by a UK firm. She was previously a Managing Director in Investment Banking and head of the Global Growth Group at Merrill Lynch & Co.
Deborah currently serves on the board of Degreed, Lightneer, and Web.com (NASDAQ: WWWW) and is a board observer of Raise and CreativeLive. She is a member of the boards of The Chicago Public Education Fund, The Common Ground Foundation, KIPP: Chicago, Marwen, National Louis University, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, and The Board of Dean’s Advisors at Harvard Business School. She is a member of the Steering Committee of the Illinois Business Immigration Coalition. She previously served on the board of a number of education organizations including the Chicago Board of Education, America’s Promise Alliance, Teach for America Chicago, and the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship Chicago. Deborah graduated cum laude with a BA in history from Princeton University in 1982 and an MBA from Harvard University 1987.
Denise Gallucci is the Chief Executive Officer of GEMS Education Americas and GEMS – The Education Partners. A visionary strategist and committed leader, Denise has dedicated her nearly two-decade career to providing children with high-quality educational opportunities. At GEMS Education Americas, Denise oversees business development, alliances and partnerships and solution delivery across North and South America. Her work involves managing schools for private and public clients and advising governments, corporations and schools on delivering high-quality education solutions. Under Denise’s leadership, GEMS Education opened its flagship school in Chicago with plans to open more schools throughout the United States and Latin America.
As the Chief Executive Officer of The Education Partners, Denise spearheads robust transformation efforts for diverse education systems around the globe. The Education Partners serves a range of clients, including education ministries, state departments of education, cultural institutions, for profit and nonprofit organizations and corporate entities to improve social and economic outcomes for individuals, communities and nations. Denise lends her expertise and insight to deliver leadership and management solutions, school improvement and education reform, and her work is focused on making a tangible difference in the lives of learners and communities, enabling students of all ages to be prepared to succeed in an increasingly competitive world. Through The Education Partners’ Global Advisory Council, Denise has established a team of pioneering education leaders from countries that span the world and whose collective work will help to create global education solutions.
Previously, Denise served as the Deputy Executive Director and Superintendent of Schools for the Capitol Region Education Council (CREC) in Hartford, Connecticut, where she founded ten schools and expanded eight and grew the organization by $200 million over a six-year period. Throughout her career in education, Denise has been recognized for her consistent record as a transformative education leader, significantly narrowing and eliminating the achievement gap that exists amongst students in America. She has held numerous positions of leadership in large urban centers, including the New York City Department of Education and the Chicago Public Schools, where she was Director of Gifted and Enriched Academic Programs. In 2012, Denise was named as one of the 40 Most Innovative Leaders Under 40 by Connecticut Magazine.
Diane Tavenner is the Founder and CEO of Summit Public Schools (SPS), a leading charter management organization serving California and Washington State. Summit employs the Summit Learning model which leverages technology to connect students’ long-term goals to their daily actions and empowers them to own their learning.
As a result, Summit’s graduates are completing four-year college degrees at twice the national average. Newsweek and US News & World Report have ranked Summit among the top public schools in the nation. In partnership with Facebook, Summit is currently working to scale personalized learning by making the Summit Learning Platform available to schools across the United States, for free, through the Summit Learning Program. Diane serves as the Board Chair of the California Charter Schools Association (CCSA) representing the majority of California’s 1,300+ charter schools. Diane also serves on the board of Transcend, The Primary School and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning. Diane is a member and moderator of the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship, a leadership program within the Aspen Institute, a fellow in the Board Academy, and a member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO). Prior to Summit, Diane was a public school teacher, administrator and leader in traditional urban and suburban public schools throughout California. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology from the University of Southern California and a master’s degree in administration and policy analysis from Stanford University.
Dominic is a goal-driven leader with over 14 years of experience in international business administration and educational leadership. He specializes in strategy, organizational change management, and implementing technology-based solutions to complement the holistic student learning process. Dominic is the Executive Director and President of the Board at Khan Lab School (KLS), an independent school associated with Khan Academy.
Prior to joining KLS in 2016, Dominic was the Managing Director of the German American International School in Menlo Park, where he founded and directed the International Middle School and the go-to-market strategy for the High School, spearheaded the International Baccalaureate accreditation process, and led the entire political negotiation of the new facility and its complex relocation process. He was previously the Principal at an inner-city junior high in Zurich, Switzerland, where he strategized and led improvements for an economically disadvantaged student population; this work included partnering with a group of subject-matter experts to design and execute an innovative advisory program that prepares students for admission to vocational studies. For over six years prior to his headship, Dominic dedicated his career to personalized and project-based learning in the classroom: he taught innovative courses in Technology, Science, Math, Design, Physical Education, French, and German.
Outside of KLS, Dominic serves as the President and Chairman of the Board at Learn4life, a Swiss nonprofit organization he founded in 2004. Learn4life is committed to affordable education and has served over 2,000 economically disadvantaged students to date.
Raised in Switzerland, Dominic speaks Swiss German, German, English, French, and Italian. Dominic holds his teaching credential from the College of Education in Bern, Switzerland; his M.A. in School and Education Management from Zurich University of Teacher Education; and his M.B.A. from the world-renowned International Institute for Management Development (IMD) with a focus on Leadership, Strategy, Globalization, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation.
Donald E. Graham is chairman of the board of Graham Holdings Company (previously The Washington Post Company). He was publisher of The Washington Post newspaper from January 1979 until September 2000 and chairman of the paper from September 2000 to February 2008.
Graham was born on April 22, 1945, in Baltimore, Maryland, a son of Philip L. and Katharine Meyer Graham. His father was publisher of The Washington Post from 1946 until 1961 and president of The Washington Post Company from 1947 until his death in 1963. His mother, Katharine Graham, served in a variety of executive positions from 1963 until her death in 2001. Eugene Meyer, Graham’s grandfather, purchased The Washington Post at a bankruptcy sale in 1933.
After graduating in 1966 from Harvard College, where he was president of the Harvard Crimson, Graham was drafted and served as an information specialist with the 1st Cavalry Division in Vietnam from 1967 to 1968. He was a patrolman with the Washington Metropolitan Police Department from January 1969 to June 1970. Graham joined The Washington Post newspaper in 1971 as a reporter. He was named executive vice president and general manager of the newspaper in 1976. He was elected a director of The Washington Post Company in 1974 and served as president from May 1991 to September 1993.
Graham previously served as chairman of the District of Columbia College Access Program, a private foundation which, since 1999, has helped double the number of DC public high school students going on to college and has helped triple the number graduating from college. He co-founded the program along with major local businesses and foundations. Since its inception, DC-CAP has assisted over 13,000 DC students enroll in college and has provided scholarships totaling more than $33 million.
In 2013, Graham co-founded TheDream.US, the nation’s largest college access and success program for DREAMers. In three years, TheDream.US is now running two scholarship programs, has raised over $91 million in scholarship money and currently has over 1,700 scholars nationwide. Don’s philanthropic spirit and contributions have opened countless opportunities to the immigrant youth community across the nation.
Dr. Donald E. Robertson has served Virginia Beach City Public Schools for the past 28 years. He has served as a mathematics teacher, coach, assistant principal, high school principal, and since 2012 has served as the Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer in the Department of Planning, Innovation, and Accountability. During his six-year tenure as a high school principal, his school was recognized on three occasions as one of the top high schools in the country, and he was chosen as the 2011 “High School Principal of the Year.” In his current role, Dr. Robertson oversees four offices: Office of Research and Evaluation, Office of Student Assessment, Office of Professional Growth and Innovation, and the Office of Innovation and Strategic Planning. In addition, he serves as the chairperson of the Compass Collaborative, the group that oversees the implementation of Compass to 2020, the division’s strategic plan for student success.
Dr. Robertson is married and has two sons. His wife Debbie is a high school math teacher, his oldest son Kyle is a 2014 graduate of Virginia Tech, and his youngest son Sean is a sophomore at Regent University.
Doug Dohring is a California-based entrepreneur who has led several companies to success over the past three decades. Doug founded Age of Learning, Inc., in February 2007, which brought together experts in the field of education, creative content developers, and engineers to develop and launch ABCmouse.com Early Learning Academy, the most comprehensive digital learning resource for children ages 2—8. Winner of numerous awards from national education, parent, and media organizations, ABCmouse offers a comprehensive expert-designed curriculum for preschool, pre-k, kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade. ABCmouse is regularly ranked as the leading children’s learning app for iOS and Android. To date, children have completed more than 2 billion learning activities on ABCmouse.
Prior to founding Age of Learning, Doug founded NeoPets, Inc., in February 2000. Neopets.com rapidly became one of the world’s top-ranked websites, generating more than 8 billion page views per month in 11 languages globally. Advertising Age named Doug one of the Top 100 Marketers of the Year in 2001, and in 2002, with the expansion of NeoPets into Asia, Neopets and Doug were the subject of a Harvard Business School Case Study. Doug served as Chairman and CEO of NeoPets, Inc., from its inception through its $160 million sale to Viacom in June of 2005. Before NeoPets, Doug founded The Dohring Company in 1986, which quickly grew to become a top-100 market research firm in the U.S., serving thousands of clients.
Doug Lederman is editor and co-founder of Inside Higher Ed. He has been a higher education journalist for 30 years and writes and speaks widely about the industry.
Dr. Eduardo Padrón is the President of Miami Dade College, a national model of student achievement and the largest institution of higher education in America. In 2016, President Barack Obama awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in the U.S., for being a prominent national voice for access and inclusion in higher education. In 2009, Time magazine included him among the “10 Best College Presidents” in the United States; in 2010, Florida Trend magazine named him “Floridian of the Year”; and in 2011, The Washington Post recognized him as one of the eight most influential college presidents nationwide.
He is the recipient of the Carnegie Corporation’s Centennial Academic Leadership Award, the National Citizen Service Award from Voices for National Service, and the Hesburgh Award, the highest honor in U.S. higher education. He is also an Ascend Fellow at the Aspen Institute.
Six American Presidents have selected him to serve on posts of national prominence. He serves on the boards of the Council on Foreign Relations, the White House Fellows Selection Panel, and the International Association of University Presidents. He is the past chairman of the Business-Higher Education Forum, the American Council on Education and the Association of American Colleges and Universities.