David Yaskin


David Yaskin, CEO of Faculty Guild, has been an education technology leader for over 20 years.  He is credited with helping to create two new product categories: enterprise course/learning management systems and enterprise student success systems.  Faculty Guild is a new organization focused on providing college student faculty who are great at teaching in order to improve their outcomes.

Most recently, David was the Sr. Vice President for Student Success at Hobsons, a global education company.  Hobsons acquired Starfish Retention Solutions in early 2015.  David helped to integrate Starfish into Hobsons as well set strategy for Hobsons overall K-20 student success work.  

In 2007, David founded Starfish and ran it as its CEO till the sale to Hobsons.  Starfish was the leading provider of enterprise student success platforms supporting over 250 colleges and universities, helping more than 4.6 million students.  Starfish helped its clients achieve improved student persistence by promoting the effective delivery and evaluation of student support initiatives. 

Starfish was recognized by Gartner as one of five Cool Vendors in Education, 2012.  Starfish won the Readers’ Choice Award from University Business in 2012, 2013, and 2014 for their Starfish EARLY ALERT™ product.  In 2014, Starfish won the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 recognizing Starfish as the 37th fastest growing technology companies in North America.

Prior to Starfish, David was VP of Product Strategy for Blackboard from 1999 to 2007.  David conceptualized, developed, and communicated the product road map for Blackboard. During his tenure at Blackboard, he helped transform the company from a successful start-up to the world’s leading provider of e-Learning technology. He is credited with such Blackboard innovations as defining the enterprise course management strategy; pioneering the Blackboard Building Blocks open programming framework; defining the vision for the Community Portal System; and inventing the Blackboard Outcomes System, a platform that unifies the assessment activities of the whole institution.

Prior to his time at Blackboard, David led software development projects in the areas of education, healthcare, safety testing, and earth science at such industry leaders as IBM, SAIC, Thomson, and Hughes.

David holds a B.S. in computer engineering and mathematics from Carnegie Mellon University, awarded 1986.

David is an active innovator and advisor to national student success initiatives.  David is the author of nine US patents on education technology.  He actively mentors a number of CEOs in education technology.  In 2013, he was an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2013 Award Finalist in the Greater Washington DC area. The following represents some of the national events David has recently engaged in:

Invited participant, Dept of Ed & White House, Sustaining the Momentum for Innovation in Higher Education. November 15, 2016

Invited participant and panelist, National Academy of Education, Workshop on Big Data in Education, August 9, 2016

Invited participant, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, US Education, Learning Forum, October 7, 2015

Invited participant, Association for Institutional Research, Defining Institutional Research and Data Capacities, A Meeting of Experts – Washington DC, July 30, 2015

Invited participant and panelist, Computing Research Association, National Science Foundation, Advancing Data-Intensive Research in Education Workshop, May 31, 2015

Invited participant, 2nd White House College Opportunity Day of Action, December 4, 2014, President and First Lady in attendance.

Invited participant, US Dept. of Education, Symposium on Innovation in Higher Education, November 10, 2014

Invited participant, White House College Opportunity Summit, January 16, 2014, President and First Lady in attendance.

EDUCAUSE Presentations