Charles Thornburgh Founder, CEO, and Director
Charles discovered a passion for education while teaching high school students on the weekends during his undergraduate days at Stanford, and upon graduating translated that passion into the founding of multiple education start-ups. These early ventures included ClickSafety.com, an online safety training company, and Testtakers.com, the first rich-media, diagnostic and prescriptive test prep tutoring application online. In 2002 his business was acquired by Kaplan, where he spent the next nine years as an in-house entrepreneur, launching several edtech businesses in the K12 and higher education markets.
Charles is a two-time CODiE Award recipient for excellence in software development and a former director on the Education Board of the Software & Information Industry Association. He is also named on the “16 People Changing the Landscape of Online Education Forever” list by Find Education Online. He is a frequent speaker at education events around the country, when he is not home in Austin, TX enjoying the outdoors with his wife and two young sons.LinkedIn
Dr. Mark Milliron Co-Founder, Chief Learning Officer, and Director
Mark is known as a champion for education opportunity and a catalyst for conversations on innovation and the road ahead. He is an award-winning leader, author, speaker, and consultant who has worked with universities, community colleges, K-12 schools, foundations, corporations, associations, and government agencies across the country and around the world. As Chief Learning Officer for Civitas Learning, Mark focuses on a wide range of activities for the company, from shaping product development to engaging the education community to leading research projects on student outcomes. Prior to joining Civitas, Mark served in the education world in a number of leadership positions, most recently as founding Chancellor of WGU Texas. Prior to that, Mark held the role of Deputy Director for Postsecondary Improvement with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
He is a Distinguished Graduate of The University of Texas at Austin’s College of Education; a National Leadership Award winner of the American Association of Community Colleges; a recipient of the Distinguished Service Award for the National University Technology Network; and last year was inducted in the United State Distance Learning Association’s Hall of Fame. He will quickly tell you, however, that the most important job and the greatest blessing in his life is serving as Julia’s husband, and as father to Alexandra, Richard, Marcus, and Max.LinkedIn | Twitter | Website
Dave Kil Chief Data Scientist
Dave is the Chief Data Scientist at Civitas Learning overseeing the development of insight and action analytics, leveraging salient concepts from multiple disciplines. Prior to joining Civitas, Dave was the Chief Scientist at Humana, building predictive models and outcomes analytics algorithms that fed into the corporate insight engine. He also helped build various informatics applications and platforms, dealing with sensor networks including smartphones, social networks, CEP-based user engagement, adaptive messaging, and real-time outcomes analytics in Silicon Valley. He holds 9 US and international patents, is the author of a book on pattern recognition and prediction by Springer-Verlag, and has published a number of articles in journals and conferences. He graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (Highest Honor, BSEE and Chemistry), Polytechnic Univ. of New York (MSEE), and Arizona State University (MBA).
Niranjan Nagar Chief Technology Officer
As Civitas Learning's Chief Technology officer, Niranjan has the distinct responsibility for building and designing Civitas' overall mobile and app strategy as well as refining the company's core technology infrastructure. Niranjan's deep passion for finding creative and innovative ways to improve the quality of education in our country was sparked by his role as both an entrepreneur and a parent. Prior to joining Civitas Learning, Niranjan was the head of apps and games in the global vertical marketing team at Facebook. Before Facebook he was the vice president for digital games at Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment, as well as a vice president at Electronic Arts. Niranjan is also a founding member of Listen.com that created the Rhapsody music service.
Niranjan has degrees from Drexel University and Karnatak University in India. He is also a graduate of the SEP at Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
Laura Malcolm Vice President of Product
As Vice President of Product Management, Laura drives our product vision and user-interface design. Laura is passionate about helping others improve their lives through education. She began her career as a high school teacher in Austin and through that experience discovered her deep interest in designing tools to help people learn. Prior to Civitas Learning, she spent ten years in executive leadership roles directing the design and development of innovative Educational Technology products.
Laura is a two-time CODiE Award recipient for product design and received her BA & BFA from University of Texas at Austin, and MA in Learning, Design and Technology at Stanford University. She and her musician husband are happy to be back in Austin, enjoying the laid-back outdoor lifestyle it offers and spending time with their adorable dog, Elsa.LinkedIn
Shawn Gaide VP of Operations
Shawn has spent the last 10 years leading teams at successful, high-growth technology companies. Currently, he oversees Civitas Learning’s day-to-day operations, including business strategy, customer experience, marketing, finance, and HR. Prior to joining Civitas Learning, he served in multiple leadership positions at Bazaarvoice (NASDAQ: BV) throughout the company’s journey from start-up, initial public offering, and subsequent acquisitions. Before Bazaarvoice, Shawn got his start in the Austin tech community at Planview, where he held a variety of sales, marketing, and business development roles.
Shawn attended the University of Texas, majoring in Economics. He previously served as an advisor with the Bazaarvoice Foundation, and sat on the Board of Advisors for the Dell Social Innovation Challenge. Outside of work, he is an avid outdoorsman and wanna-be-homebrewer, and enjoys spending time with his wife, their infant daughter, and their now jealous hunting dog.
Tony Capasso VP of Strategic Partnerships
As Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, Tony is responsible for leading a team focused on improving student outcomes by matching the needs of our partner institutions with Civitas solutions. Prior to Civitas Learning, Tony served as Region Vice President of Sales at Bazaarvoice, where he led teams responsible for growing the company from an early stage start-up to a publicly traded, global organization.
Tony started his career as a soccer coach at the University of Texas, where he focused on developing successful student-athletes at the collegiate level. During his time at Texas, he also certified coaches at the state and regional level by teaching courses through the National Soccer Coaches Association of America.
Tony has a passion for the Austin community, where he serves as a Board Member of The Trail Foundation and The Austin Sports Commission. He has also served on the Corporate Council for the Long Center for the Performing Arts, and co-founded Catalyst 8, a non-profit that drove significant fundraising towards the completion of the Long Center in 2008. When not cycling or running along the trail, Tony can be found at home enjoying time with his wife and their new daughter.
Tom Warmbrodt Vice President of Engineering
As Vice President of Engineering, Tom oversees Civitas Learning’s development and information technology teams while working closely with partners to guarantee seamless and secure integrations. Most recently, he served higher education and K-12 for a decade as the chief technologist for Digital River Education Services, JourneyEd.com, and Academic Superstore. Prior, he built and managed the development team at Austin-based online learning pioneer NotHarvard.com. Tom got his start as a developer, delivering websites and applications for numerous Fortune 1000 clients including Altoids, Barnes&Noble, Bloomberg, Dell, and IBM.
Tom’s work on the Altoids e-commerce site garnered a Communication Arts Award of Excellence in 2000. He attended UT Austin and majored in Physics. He is an ardent fan of sabermetrics, e-sports, tacos, and barbecue. He has a wonderful wife, three beautiful daughters, and one obnoxious cat.LinkedIn
Adam Dell Director
Adam Dell, Venture Partner, joined Austin Ventures in May 2010. Adam has been a successful entrepreneur, academician, and has more than 12 years of experience in the venture capital industry. He will focus purely on early-stage venture investments in the information technology and business services areas.
Most recently, Adam was Founder and Managing General Partner of Impact Venture Partners, a venture capital firm focused on information technology investments. Prior to founding Impact, Adam was a partner with Crosspoint Venture Partners in Northern California, and a senior associate with Enterprise Partners in Southern California. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, he worked as a corporate attorney in Austin, Texas, with the law firm of Winstead, Sechrest & Minick.
His prior investments include OpenTable (OPEN), Buzzsaw (ADSK), Ingenio (T), and Hotjobs (YHOO). Dell founded and served as chairman of the board of MessageOne, which was acquired by Dell, Inc. in 2008. Adam teaches a class on the role of law in innovation at the University of Texas School of Law.
Santiago Subotovsky Director
Santiago “Santi” is a Principal at Emergence Capital Partners. Prior to joining Emergence, Santi was an advisor at Aqua Capital Partners where he assisted with the due diligence process for new technology investments and developed detailed models to facilitate analysis of companies. In 1999, Santi founded his own company, AXG Tecnonexo, the largest e-learning vendor in Latin America. He expanded the company from its inception to more than 150 employees with operations across Latin America and the US.
Santi received an MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School and holds a BS in Economics from St. Andrew’s University in Argentina. He is a Kauffman Finalist and an Endeavor Entrepreneur. Outside of work, Santi is passionate about traveling internationally and continues to work on a personal goal of visiting at least 50% of the world’s countries. He is an avid opera and classical music follower and, as almost every Argentine, he is passionate about soccer.LinkedIn | Twitter | Blog
National Advisory Board
Please follow this link to view the thought leaders sharing insights through membership on our National Advisory Board.