Civitas Learning welcomes new CTO to sustain growth, engineering excellence
Building on year of strong growth, Austin social-impact company adds seasoned technology executive Will Ballard, deepens industry expertise with new data science patent
AUSTIN, TEX. – Civitas Learning, the pioneering student success software company, announced that veteran executive Will Ballard joined the business as chief technology officer. Ballard brings more than twenty years of experience managing large engineering and IT teams responsible for software architecture, design, development and quality assurance for enterprise technology customers.
“Will brings a rare combination of technical expertise, broad experience and strategic leadership skill,” said Chris Hester, CEO of Civitas Learning. “His unique background is helping us sustain and expand a best-in-class engineering, product and data science team. They’re focused on–and now delivering–powerful new capabilities to our higher education customers to help more students succeed.”
At Civitas Learning, Ballard is building out the company’s team of software and data engineers to maintain and expand its best-in-class student success tools. Ballard joins Civitas after more than eight years with GLG (Gerson Lehrman Group), a global B2B platform for knowledge management that works with some of the world’s largest corporations, including more than half of the companies in the Fortune 100.
“I’ve followed Civitas Learning’s growth and evolution for nearly a decade, and what’s continually impressed me is the team’s commitment and bold vision for using the best of technology and innovation to achieve social impact in higher education,” Ballard said. “With the right people, product and process in place, I’m excited to help the team deliver technical excellence, at a scale that will help a million more students finish their college education by 2025.”
A graduate of Claremont McKenna College, Ballard began his career with enterprise software companies and first-generation e-commerce companies. He joins an executive leadership team that includes experts with backgrounds at companies including Kinnser Software, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Greenway Health, Xerox, and PeopleAdmin.
In addition to naming Ballard as CTO, Civitas Learning also promoted product and corporate development strategist Rebecca Reid as Vice President of Product. Under her leadership of the product team, the organization has improved usability, accessibility and adoption of their student success solution, subsequently supporting improved customer retention. Chief Data Scientist David Kil and team also recently secured a patent for building student success models that accommodate any academic term structure, ensuring industry-leading flexibility and personalization.
The company’s talented team of engineers, educators, consultants, and data scientists now work with a network of nearly 400 campuses reaching more than 9 million students across the world. Since launching in 2011, Civitas Learning has made five U.S. and international acquisitions and earned recognition as one of the fastest-growing companies in Austin, growing 10x over the last four years. The company’s pioneering work with colleges and universities continues to deliver outcomes for a diverse cross-section of institutions.
About Civitas Learning®: Our mission is to help colleges and universities harness the power of their student data to improve student success outcomes. We embed actionable intelligence into a connected, workflow technology so that higher education can focus their student success strategies, deliver proactive care, inspire holistic advising, and quickly measure what’s working and for whom. With our student success solution, we help empower leaders, advisors and faculty with the tools they need to measurably improve enrollment, persistence, and graduation outcomes.
Today, we work with nearly 400 colleges and universities, reaching nearly 9 million students. Together with our growing community of customers, we are making the most of the world’s learning data to help graduate a million more students per year by 2025. For more information, visit: www.civitaslearning.com.
April 2, 2020