Expertise: Higher education reform, post-secondary education, economic development policy
Louis Soares is a Senior Fellow with American Progress and provides strategic guidance and policy expertise on higher education reform. He has more than 20 years of experience in postsecondary education and economic development policy. Soares is a sought-after speaker and commentator on federal and state policy and is a contributor to CNBC, The Chronicle of Higher Education, and Inside Higher Education.
Soares’s research at American Progress includes community college reform, worker training, education and industry partnerships, career and education counseling, and technology-driven innovation in higher education. Soares’s papers “Working Learners: Educating Our Entire Workforce for the 21st Century” and “Disrupting College: How Disruptive Innovation Can Bring Quality and Affordability to Postsecondary Education” are widely cited as redefining the policy debate in worker training and online education respectively. Soares was also appointed by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to serve on the National Board of the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education in November 2011.
Prior to joining American Progress, he served as director of business development in the administration of Rhode Island Governor Donald L. Carcieri where he managed Rhode Island’s policy incentives for workforce training, business attraction, export assistance, government contracting, and small business from 2003 to 2006. As director of education and training for the Rhode Island Technology Council from 2000 to 2002, Soares developed and managed a workforce training strategy for a 240-member trade association, which included implementing education-business partnerships at the high school, college, and corporate levels to align with relevant workplace skills. He also served as a small business consultant with the U.S. Peace Corps in Romania in 1995 and 1996.
Soares holds a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in business economics from Brown University. He lives with his wife, Elizabeth, and daughter, Maya, in Seattle, Washington.