Tom Dawson, a member of the Education Sector K20 Task Force, is executive director of product management for Laureate Education. In this role, Dawson is responsible for managing the performance of the Richard W. Riley College of Education and Leadership at Walden University, the premier online university in Laureate’s network of global institutions of higher education. The Riley College is the largest online school of education in the U.S. In addition, he is also responsible for managing the performance of Canter & Associates, a wholly owned subsidiary of Laureate, which provides online continuing education courses to K-12 teachers. Prior to joining Laureate, Dawson served as senior program officer for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for four years, where he managed a variety of grants and contracts under the foundation’s Postsecondary Success strategy focused on higher education policy, online learning, and education data.
Previously, Dawson served in a variety of positions at the U.S. Education Department including deputy assistant secretary for higher education programs, where he oversaw the department’s grants to colleges and universities and its college accreditation office. Before this role, Dawson also managed business development activities for ACS Education Services, which provided data reporting services for school districts, state education agencies, and universities to help them comply with federal and state education requirements. He graduated from Claremont McKenna College with honors degrees in government and economics.