Founder and Managing Partner of Clark Aldrich Designs

Clark Aldrich, founder and Managing Partner of Clark Aldrich Designs, is one of the top educational simulation and interface designers in the world. His award-winning simulations have generated millions in revenues and have been translated and deployed in dozens of countries and languages. Clients include Harvard Business School Publishing, the Department of Defense, Microsoft, Cisco, Shell, and Hewlett-Packard.

Mr. Aldrich is also the author of five books: Simulations and the Future of Learning, Learning By Doing, The Complete Guide to Simulations and Serious Games, Learning Online with Games, Simulations, and Virtual Worlds, and Unschooling Rules.

Mr. Aldrich earned a BS in Cognitive Science from Brown University.

Clark Aldrich Designs

"Meet My Teachers: Mom And Dad," Businessweek

"Book Review: The Complete Guide to Simulations & Serious Games by Clark Aldrich," Learning Solutions magazine

Unschooling Rules Blog

Cofounder and Executive Director of the Education Practice of Innosight Institute

Michael Horn is the cofounder and Executive Director of the Education Practice of Innosight Institute, a not-for-profit think tank devoted to applying the theories of disruptive innovation pioneered by Harvard Professor Clayton M. Christensen.

Mr. Horn is the coauthor of Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns with Clayton Christensen, and Curtis W. Johnson, and is known as a leader in the area of disruptive education. Mr. Horn has testified at many state legislative sessions and is a frequent keynote speaker at education conferences around the country.

Mr. Horn holds an MBA from the Harvard Business School and a BA in history from Yale University.

Innosight Institute

"Colleges in Crisis," Harvard magazine

Senior Research Fellow for the Education Practice of Innosight Institute

Heather Clayton Staker is a Senior Research Fellow for the education practice of Innosight Institute and a thought leader in the field of educational innovation.

Scholastic’s blog named Mrs. Staker as one of five people to watch in education in 2012 and her Innosight report, “The Rise of K-12 Blended Learning: Profiles of emerging models,” was listed by Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning as one of the eleven most valuable reports for online learning policymakers and practitioners in 2011. She is a frequent keynote speaker at major education-innovation conferences and has testified before state policymakers in Arizona, California, Florida, Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania.

Mrs. Staker graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College, with a concentration in Government. She received an MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School. She is the mother of four elementary school students.

Innosight Institute

"Five People to Watch in Education in 2012," Scholastic blog

Managing Partner and cofounder of Generation Partners

Mark Jennings is the Managing Partner and cofounder of Generation Partners, a $355 million private equity firm. Over the past twenty-four years, the firm’s principals have invested in over fifty companies and have generated a gross internal rate of return exceeding fifty percent per annum over this period. Generation specializes in helping entrepreneurs build high-growth service businesses and generates returns through core business growth rather than through financial leverage. The portfolio companies of Generation’s most recent fund have grown annual revenues at an average of thirty-seven percent compounded annually over the past seven years.

Generation has significant experience in the education sector, having invested in MedVance Institute –- a leading provider of education for the allied health sector — and Post University, a 120-year-old, regionally-accredited university offering Associates, Bachelors, and Masters Degrees. Generation sponsored the conversion of Post University from non-profit to for-profit in 2004. Since that time, Post’s enrollment has increased by over 1,000% by focusing on quality of instruction and the needs of students. Mr. Jennings currently serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Post.

Mr. Jennings earned his MBA from the Harvard Business School in 1986 and earned a BS in Mechanical Engineering with highest honors from The University of Texas at Austin in 1984, where he graduated second in his class and received the University’s Rhodes Scholarship nomination.

Generation Partners

Case Study: Post University, Generation Partners Investment

Founder, CEO, and sole owner of Centaurus Advisors, LLC

John Arnold is the Founder, CEO, and sole owner of Centaurus Advisors, LLC, the General Partner to hedge fund Centaurus Energy Master Fund, LP (CEMF). Mr. Arnold founded CEMF in June 2002 in Houston, Texas. CEMF has over seventy employees in offices in the United States, Canada, and England. The fund trades energy commodities and is developing three natural gas storage fields. Separately, Mr. Arnold manages significant energy exploration investments. Prior to founding CEMF, he held various positions within Enron’s Wholesale Division, including Head of Natural Gas Derivatives.

Mr. Arnold holds a BA from Vanderbilt University (1995). With his wife, he founded the Laura and John Arnold Foundation with assets over $700 million that concentrates on public policy issues, including education, pension, and criminal justice reform in the United States. He is a member of the Board of Trustees at Vanderbilt University and The New Teacher Project.

President of Laura and John Arnold Foundation

Denis Calabrese is President of the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, a rising force in transformational and innovative reforms in K–12 education, state and municipal pension systems, and the American criminal justice system. Though only in their 30’s, Laura and John Arnold were the eleventh most generous philanthropists in the United States in 2010 according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy’s “Annual Philanthropy 50,” having donated over $100 million to nonprofit organizations.

Mr. Calabrese is an entrepreneur with multiple successful business startups to his credit, including founding the largest running and walking fitness program in the world, USA FIT. He is also one of the nation’s foremost public policy advocacy experts and has advised senior elected officials at the federal, state, and local levels and has provided strategic communications advice to many of the largest corporations in the world. Early in his career he served as Chief of Staff to the future Majority Leader of the United States House of Representatives.

Mr. Calabrese is an Economics and Political Science graduate of Rice University, where he later taught a course on political communications.

Laura and John Arnold Foundation

“Staffing Up, Denis Calabrese,” Philanthropy Roundtable


CEO of Prime II Investments

Greg Marchbanks is the CEO of Prime II Investments, a private equity fund that has invested in a number of innovative and disruptive educational companies, including LA College International, Grand Canyon University, Chancellor University, and

Greg previously served on the Board of Trustees and the Executive Committee for St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas. He is also a former Board President for the historic Paramount and State Theatres in Austin, Texas.

Greg received a BBA from the University of Texas at Austin.

The Marchbanks Company

Adjunct Professor, Media Ventures Program at the Boston University School of Management

Nelson Gayton is an Adjunct Professor in the Media Ventures Program at the Boston University School of Management. He is also a Founding Member and served as Interim Executive Director for the 5D Institute, a non-profit educational organization comprised of designers, scientists, artists and educators who aim to change the way we experience stories through creative, collaborative world-building. Mr. Gayton also served as Executive Director and Lecturer at UCLA Anderson School of Management, where he still teaches Entrepreneurship, Creativity and Innovation in Media, Entertainment, and Sports. Prior to joining UCLA, he was an adjunct faculty member of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he served as the Managing Director of the school’s Media & Entertainment Initiative and was also instrumental in establishing the Wharton Interactive Media Initiative.

Mr. Gayton has also founded and sold several successful startups in media, entertainment, and education.

Mr. Gayton received an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MFA from the UCLA Graduate School of Theater, Film, and Television. He graduated from Tulane University, where he received a BSM with honors.

Boston University Media Ventures