Leadership Team

Rick Beyer—Chief Executive Officer.  Rick has a unique combination of experience in both higher education and business. A former college president and board governance chair, successful technology CEO, and senior operating executive of a $1 billion public company, Rick has consistently been at the forefront of industry-leading initiatives and has a successful history of leading organizations through change and growth.

Rick is currently a senior fellow, and former  member of the board of directors at the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB), a national governance organization for higher education with over 1,900 member institutions. He has served on the board of trustees at American University as well as his alma mater, Olivet College, including serving as board chair and now trustee emeritus. Rick has served as President, President Emeritus at Wheeling Jesuit University and has also held senior executive positions at Trimble Navigation, Ltd (NASDAQ: TRMB) and Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM).   

Rick is a frequent speaker on macro trends shaping higher education. Here is a recent Forbes interview wherein Rick discusses "unbundling" the college degree.  

Robert ElzGroup President. Bob was formerly Senior Vice President at Apollo Education Group and University of Phoenix (NASDAQ:APOL). Bob created the overall strategy and led the corporate business development efforts at Apollo partnering with major corporations who offer tuition reimbursement for employee degree completion. Bob’s team also led the creation and implementation of Phoenix Career Services, connecting over one million students and alumni to job opportunities and career resources on a scale unmatched in the history of higher education. Prior to joining Apollo, Bob led teams at UPS (NYSE:UPS) for seventeen years, the last decade at their world headquarters in Atlanta where he guided global teams in the development of UPS.com and the creation of UPS’s global e-Commerce vision and strategy. Bob is responsible for corporate education as well as career coaching and private label business units at Lumerit.

Ryan YamaneChief Operating Officer.  Ryan’s personal outside-the-box educational journey has given him unique insight into the changing landscape of higher education. After graduating homeschool high school, Ryan was able to forge his own unique college pathway with his BS in Business, completing his degree for less than $10,000.  For more than ten years Ryan has sought to help other students do the same at colleges across the country.

As a co-founder of CollegePlus, Ryan helped build the company starting in 2004, holding the positions of Chief Financial Officer, followed by Chief Operating Officer, and finally Chief Executive Officer. During this time, he oversaw all aspects of the company—Marketing, Finance, Accounting, Purchasing, HR, Legal, Operations functions, and systems development.

Under Ryan's leadership CollegePlus achieved world-class customer satisfaction rankings as measured by Net Promoter Scores.  Most recently, he led the organization through a successful strategic market transition and now serves as Lumerit Education Chief Operating Officer.  

Woody RobertsonChief Development Officer. Woody is a high-energy creative thinker with a proven track record of growing businesses. After experiencing first-hand the benefits of unbundling college and pioneering the methodologies of credit aggregation which he applied to his BSBA in Business Management, Woody co-founded Lumerit Education in 2004. Woody's role as a senior executive has involved driving the development of the organization from the ground up, performing roles in Operations, Admissions, and Marketing. He thrives in team-building and business development, along with connecting students and markets with attractive and viable solutions.  

Over the past ten years, Woody’s growth strategies have taken Lumerit to a global level with students in 22 countries. As Lumerit’s revenue driver from day one, Woody built the company’s marketing strategy, trained a national team of admissions reps, has given hundreds of presentations, and initiated the foundational partnerships that have helped Lumerit grow exponentially.

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David WhiteVice President Operations.  David has brought to Lumerit Education a rich educational perspective born from a diverse set of experiences in education over the last 20 years. He was first exposed to blended learning while earning his Masters of Education in Educational Leadership. This sparked a passion for reinventing the way we do education. Creating new approaches and fostering healthy change has been a hallmark of his career. David’s work in positions such as Teacher, Counselor, Dean, Chaplain, and Principal and Head of School fostered his desire to make a direct impact on the world of higher education. 

Serving as the Director of Operations, David has driven a culture of performance and measurement. Directly supervising the delivery of services to Lumerit clients, David has fostered the ongoing development of a coaching mindset, project management practices and standards, and the successful implementation of the Net Promoter System, resulting in world-class quality as measured by customer feedback.  David excels at building highly-skilled teams by exploring individual strengths and positioning for success.

Michael Bassis, PhDChair, Academic Council. Michael is an experienced academic leader with special expertise in how colleges and universities can adapt to the rapidly-changing landscape of higher education. Currently a Senior Fellow at the Association of American Colleges and Universities, Michael is writing and speaking about the current transformation of American higher education and about innovative strategies to control educational costs while enhancing educational quality. Earlier he served with great success as the President of Olivet College in Michigan and later at Westminster College in Utah. In each instance, Michael’s success at revitalizing the institution won him wide recognition. His work at Olivet was chronicled by Stephen R. Covey in his book, Living the Seven Habits.

Michael’s rich practical experience coupled with his deep knowledge of changing practices in higher education has led to a host of publications and speaking engagements on strategic thinking, program design, the assessment of learning outcomes and competency-based education. In addition, he has served on advisory boards and project teams with numerous foundations and professional associations, including the American Council on Education, the Association of American Colleges and Universities, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Campus Compact, The New American Colleges and Universities, and the Project on the Future of Higher Education. 

Michael graduated from Brown University and earned his PhD in the Sociology of Education from the University of Chicago.

Board Members

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Michael Clark—Michael is the founding owner and President of Aspect Wealth Management, which he established in 1997 after a ten-year career with Salomon Smith Barney. His firm assists high-net-worth investors, families, business owners and non-profit institutions in making high-quality financial decisions in the management of their wealth. Previous to Salomon Smith Barney, he served as an economic analyst and management adviser for the U.S. government and private industry. He particularly enjoyed serving for seven years as a faculty member in the Economics and Finance Division of the University of Texas at San Antonio.

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Reid Miles—Reid is Chairman and CEO of Miles Howland & Co. and a managing member of Miles Howland Education Partners. He has over 20 years of experience in investment management and operational management. He has been active as a professional investor for over 18 years. Over the course of his career Reid has invested in over 30 private equity transactions and managed numerous fund of funds investments. 

Prior to launching Miles Howland & Co. LLC, Reid was a Managing Director and Partner of BV Group Ventures, LLC. The BV Group is a diversified international investment management firm. The group has invested in over $1.5 billion of private equity, real estate, and hedge funds. From 2000 to 2005 he led the direct investment and fund of funds investment activities of the firm. He was also a member of the Executive Committee.  

Rush Cone—A founding board member of Lumerit Education, Rush is an attorney with 40 years of experience focused on a wide range of business-, corporate-, and education-related legal issues. During that time, he has worked in senior leadership for four international corporations and served his community on several non-profit and industry-related boards.

Rush and his wife, Cindy, have been involved in the development, promotion, and growth of homeschool and alternative higher education for 20 years, first through the Family Educators Alliance of South Texas, and later as founders of the RACHEL and MICHAEL Institutes focused on alternative higher education.

Dr. PJ McDonald—Dr. PJ McDonald is the Headmaster of Eagle Hill School a private co-educational college preparatory boarding school for students with learning disabilities and Attention Deficit Disorder in Hardwick, Massachusetts. PJ has served as the Headmaster of Eagle Hill School since July of 1998.

PJ is widely known in secondary educational circles as a leader whose business acumen has helped transform Eagle Hill School into an international institution. Under his leadership, Eagle Hill School has tripled total enrollment, fund-raised more than $100M dollars, built fourteen buildings, developed a comprehensive, competitive, and transparent faculty compensation plan, increased annual operating revenue five-fold, and created the Teacher Training Initiative designed to train urban public school teachers.

PJ serves on the board of trustees of $1.5b country bank (executive committee, compensation committee, and chair of succession planning committee), and is a founding member of Start Your Engines, LLC, a company created to bring Indycar racing to New England cities.  PJ is also a trustee at numerous local and national non-profits, including Be Like Brit which, after helping to construct a 19,000 square foot orphanage in Haiti, he still considers his greatest philanthropic achievement.

PJ and his wife Kathryn live in Holden, Massachusetts with their three children, Griffin (16), Reagan (15), and Tucker (11).  An Alumnus of Purdue University, PJ earned his Master’s Degree and a PhD in Educational Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.