INDIANAPOLIS — Nov. 10, 2021 — Strada Education Network, a nonprofit social impact organization dedicated to increasing individuals’ economic mobility by fostering more purposeful connections between education and work, today announced Stephen Moret as its next president and chief executive officer. He will assume the role in January 2022.
Moret brings to Strada a robust track record as a transformational leader in economic and workforce development, having led national-level business development projects — including a successful state-and-local team bid to land Amazon’s HQ2 — while also building higher education partnerships that resulted in new projects and job growth. He comes to Strada from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), where he has served as president and CEO since January 2017. He previously served as president and CEO of the Louisiana State University Foundation, secretary of the Louisiana Department of Economic Development (LED), and chief executive of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber. He has also held roles as a consultant with McKinsey & Company, as a public policy fellow with the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, and as a consultant to Harvard Business School.
In his current role at VEDP, Moret has launched a world-class, custom workforce program, the Virginia Talent Accelerator Program, in collaboration with higher education partners. Working in collaboration with university and state leaders, he also envisioned, designed, and led implementation of Virginia’s $1.1 billion Tech Talent Investment Program to double the number of bachelor’s and master’s degrees in computer science and related fields conferred each year in Virginia, as well as create a new Virginia Tech Innovation Campus.
As secretary of LED, he transformed it into one of America’s top state economic development agencies, leading business development efforts and building higher ed partnerships that helped secure a wide variety of projects in urban and rural areas. After he established LED FastStart, which provides companies with customized employee recruitment, screening, training development, and training delivery, The Economist called it “probably the most notable statewide workforce-development initiative [in America].” The workforce development programs he created in Louisiana (LED FastStart) and Virginia (the Virginia Talent Accelerator Program) have repeatedly been ranked among the best in the U.S.
“I have witnessed the transformational impact of postsecondary education in my own life and in the lives of many others,” said Moret. “Through my professional work in multiple settings, I also have seen the impact it can have on the economic competitiveness and growth of regions, states, and our country as a whole. Strada’s focused mission and substantial resources, paired with its distinctive, multidimensional approach, make it well-positioned to help revitalize and broaden participation in the American Dream of economic opportunity and mobility.”
“Stephen’s track record of establishing the types of partnerships that result in meaningful connections between education and employment, paired with his extraordinary leadership, made him stand out as the right person to build upon Strada’s success and take our mission to a new level,” said Marlene V. Coulis, Chair of the Strada Board of Trustees. “As we welcome Stephen, on behalf of the Board, I want to thank Tom Dawson for his stewardship and extend our appreciation for his continued service to Strada. The Board looks forward to working with Strada’s strong executive team, in support of the broader organization, to deliver on our ambitious goals.”
Moret earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Louisiana State University, where he was elected president of the student body, and a master’s of business administration from Harvard Business School, where he was elected co-president of the student body and received the Dean’s Award for exceptional leadership and service. He earned a doctorate in higher education management from the University of Pennsylvania, with distinction for his dissertation, which focused on linkages between higher education and the labor market in the U.S. Moret will relocate from Richmond, Va., to Indianapolis for his new role.
About Strada Education Network
Strada Education Network is a new kind of nonprofit social impact organization, dedicated to increasing individuals’ economic mobility through purposeful connections between education and employment. Our approach combines innovative research, thought leadership, strategic philanthropy and investments, and support for individuals through student coaching, work-based learning, career exploration, and helping adults learn new skills throughout their careers. Together, we work to better serve the millions of Americans seeking to complete postsecondary education and training, gain clear value from those experiences, and build meaningful careers.