NEW YORK, Aug. 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Edison Schools (Nasdaq: EDSN),
the nation's largest private manager of public schools, announced several new
additions to its senior management team, as well as a number of new
assignments and promotions. The enhanced management team will be Edison's
strongest ever with new leadership and talent in finance, development, and
school operations. Chris Whittle, Edison's founder and CEO, made the
announcements at the company's annual investor conference last week.
Chris Cerf, the company's COO for the past two years, has added the title
of president. Mr. Cerf, who joined the company four years ago as its general
counsel, will continue to be responsible for the general operations of the
company, including the direct management of the company's schools. Mr. Cerf
will continue as a member of Edison's Board of Directors.
Chip Delaney, formerly president of UBS Capital Americas, is joining the
company in the newly created position of vice chairman. In this role Mr.
Delaney will be responsible for business and financial oversight of the
company as a whole. He is also heading a recently announced re-engineering
process designed to bring greater efficiency to the business. Mr. Delaney will
remain a member of Edison's Board of Directors.
Mr. Cerf and Mr. Delaney will join Mr. Whittle in a newly created Office
of the Chief Executive.
Jim Howland, formerly of American Express and Regus Business Centres,
where he led large, global sales and marketing activities, will serve as
Edison's chief development officer. Mr. Howland will oversee Edison's four
main revenue streams including: Contract Schools, Charter Schools, Edison
Affiliates and Edison Extra -- Edison's summer school venture. He will seek
synergies across all our revenue generating activities.
Martha Olson has been recruited to replace Tonya Hinch, who recently
retired as executive vice president, school support division. Ms. Olson comes
to Edison from Sara Lee, where she served as head of various business units.
Prior to Sara Lee, Martha held senior management roles at Nestle and General
Mills. She will be responsible for the oversight of all school operations.
Deborah McGriff, formerly president of Edison Teachers College, will take
on the newly created position of chief communications officer. Prior to
joining Edison a decade ago, Ms. McGriff headed the Detroit Public Schools.
In her new capacity, she will help to expand and strengthen the role of
communications within the company.
Chris Scarlata, formerly the company controller, has been promoted to the
position of Edison's CFO, formerly held by Adam Feild.
David Graff has been promoted to the position of executive vice president
in addition to his duties as general counsel for the company.
"This is an exciting time for Edison Schools. Chip Delaney, Jim Howland,
and Martha Olson bring tremendous corporate experience and expertise," said
Chris Whittle, founder and CEO. "When combined with our already talented and
educationally savvy management team, it's clear that Edison has put together
some of the finest minds from the business, finance, and education sectors."
Chris Whittle and Benno Schmidt will continue as the company's CEO and
chairman, respectively. John Chubb will continue as the company's chief
Chris served as Edison's chief operating officer since May 1999 and as a
member of Edison's Board of Directors since November 2000. He also served as
general counsel from June 1997 to April 2000. Before joining Edison, Chris was
a partner in the Washington, D.C. law firm of Wiley, Rein & Fielding, where he
specialized in litigation with an emphasis on advocacy in the U.S. Supreme
Court, U.S. circuit courts of appeal and state supreme courts. From 1994 to
1996, Chris worked at the White House, where he served as associate counsel to
the President of the United States. Earlier in his career, he served as law
clerk to Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor and to Judge J. Skelly
Wright of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. He also
taught high school history for four years. Chris graduated in 1984 from
Columbia University School of Law, where he was named a James Kent Scholar and
Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar and served as editor-in-chief of the "Columbia Law
A founding member of Edison Schools, John has served as chief education
officer and executive vice president since May 1999. Prior to that, he served
as executive vice president of curriculum, instruction and assessment from
1992 to April 1999. John is responsible for oversight in the areas of
curriculum, instruction and assessment. A senior fellow at the Brookings
Institution since 1984, John also has taught at Stanford University and served
as an adviser, consultant, and speaker for the White House and for several
state governments, public and private school systems, and nonprofit
organizations. He has written or edited numerous books, including "A Lesson in
School Reform From Great Britain," with Terry M. Moe; "Politics, Markets, and
America's Schools," with Terry M. Moe; and "Can the Government Govern?,"
edited with Paul E. Peterson. His articles have appeared in "The Brookings
Review," "American Political Science Review," "The Public Interest," "The New
York Times," "The Wall Street Journal" and other publications.
Chip has served on Edison's Board of Directors since July 1999. Prior to
joining Edison, he was president of UBS Capital Americas, which is the manager
for two private equity funds that make investments in the U.S. and Latin
America. He served as president of UBS Capital LLC from May 1989 to December
1999. UBS Capital Americas and UBS Capital LLC are affiliated with UBS AG.
David has served as Edison's senior vice president and general counsel
since April 2000. From December 1998 to April 2000 he served as the deputy
general counsel. Prior to that he was an associate in the law firm of Shea &
Gardner in Washington, D.C. David is a graduate of the Georgetown University
Law Center, where he was awarded the Michael Feldman Award for outstanding
Prior to joining Edison, Howland held leadership roles at both American
Express and Regus Business Centres. During his ten-year tenure at American
Express, he served from 1997-2000 as president of Merchant Services
International (MSI), a $2 billion revenue-generating organization with a staff
or more than one thousand people. Headquartered in London, MSI was responsible
for the merchant acceptance of the American Express Card in Europe, Asia
Pacific, Latin America, and Canada. Most recently, Howland was chief executive
officer of Regus Americas, driving the expansion of the global leader in fully
furnished office space in the US, Canada, and Latin America. Prior to American
Express, he spent six years with McKinsey & Company, where he was a senior
engagement manager. He received his MBA degree from Stanford and a BA degree
in economics from Bucknell University.
Deborah has served as President of Edison Teacher's Colleges since May
2000. Prior to that time, she served as our executive vice president of
development from February 1998 to May 2000. From November 1993 to February
1998, she served as our senior vice president of Charter School Development.
Deborah was one of the first public school superintendents to join Edison
Schools in 1993. Prior to Edison, Deborah supported choice and excellence in
urban school districts for more than 20 years. As the first female general
superintendent of the 200,000-student Detroit Public Schools, Crain's Detroit
Business named her newsmaker of the year for 1992. Deborah received her PhD
from Fordham University.
Martha brings over twenty years of senior management experience most
recently as the president of Ralph Lauren Intimates, a division of Sara Lee.
Prior to Sara Lee, Martha held senior management roles at Nestle and General
Mills. She has had extensive experience in brand and staff management,
strategic marketing, new product development as well as significant operations
experience in many complex and difficult business transitions and situations.
Martha has her MBA degree from the Kellogg School of Management at
Northwestern University and her BA degree from Lawrence University in
Chris most recently served as Edison's controller. Previously, Chris held
the position of controller at Walker Digital LLC a start-up Internet invention
and development company, and before that he was assistant controller at
Mitchell Madison Group LLC, an international management consulting firm. Chris
is a Certified Public Accountant; he has a BS degree from the College of
Benno C. Schmidt, Jr.
Benno has served as Chairman of the Board of Directors since March 1997.
He also served as our chief executive officer from 1992 to June 1998, our
President from 1992 to February 1997 and our chief education officer from July
1998 through April 1999. Benno was the president of Yale University from
1986 to 1992, where he was known for his outspoken defense of freedom of
expression and liberal education. During his residency, Yale's endowment grew
from $1.7 billion to nearly $3 billion, the highest rate of growth among the
major endowed private universities in this country. Benno presided over one of
the largest building programs in Yale's history, fashioned a model partnership
between the university and the city of New Haven, and helped build a number of
new interdisciplinary programs, especially in environmental sciences and
policy and in international studies. Benno oversaw Yale College and eleven
graduate and professional schools, approximately 2,000 faculty members,
7,000 staff members, some 11,000 students, and operating and capital budgets
of about $900 million. Before joining Yale, Benno was the dean of Columbia
University Law School where in 1973 he became, at age 29, one of the youngest
tenured professors in Columbia's history. He was named Harlan Fiske Stone
Professor of Constitutional Law in 1982. Benno served as law clerk to Supreme
Court Chief Justice Earl Warren.
Chris Whittle is Edison's founder, has served as President since March
1997 and as Chief Executive Officer since July 1998. He has served as a member
of Edison's Board of Directors since 1992 and served as the Chairman of the
Board of Directors from 1992 until March 1995. Out of 15,000 public school
systems in the United States, Edison is the 45th largest and the fastest
growing. Prior to founding Edison, Whittle had a 25-year career in publishing
and television. He was Chairman of Whittle Communications, founder of Channel
One (now in 12,000 schools across the country), and Chairman and Publisher of
Esquire magazine. Raised in Tennessee, Chris graduated from the University of
Tennessee where he now funds 50 full scholarships for exceptional students.
Edison Schools manages 133 public schools with a total enrollment of
approximately 74,000 students. Through contracts with local school districts
and public charter school boards, Edison generally assumes educational and
operational responsibility for individual schools in return for funding that
is comparable to that spent on other public schools in the area. Over the
course of three years of intensive research, Edison's team of leading
educators and scholars developed an innovative, research-based curriculum and
school design. Edison opened its first four schools in August 1995, and has
grown rapidly in every subsequent year. For more information, please visit
Any statements in this press release and any other press release issued by
Edison on or about the date hereof about future expectations, plans and
prospects for Edison, including statements containing the words "believes,"
"anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will," and similar expressions, constitute
forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities
Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those
indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important
factors, including the risk factors discussed in our most recent quarterly
report filed with the SEC, and other factors such as, among other things, the
possibility that: (1) Edison, its independent auditors and/or the SEC may
identify additional items that materially and adversely affect Edison's
financial results; (2) the financing discussed separately by Edison today may
not be consummated; and (3) the events relating to the informal SEC inquiry or
its settlement may result in defaults under Edison's material agreements or
give rise to costly and protracted litigation against Edison. The
forward-looking statements included in this press release represent Edison's
estimates as of August 7, 2002. Edison anticipates that subsequent events and
developments will cause its estimates to change. While Edison may elect to
update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, Edison
specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking
statements should not be relied upon as representing Edison's estimates or
views as of any date subsequent to August 7, 2002.
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SOURCE Edison Schools