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David Soo, PhD, Education, is JFF’s chief of staff, based in our Washington D.C. office. He works closely with the CEO to provide strategic and programmatic leadership for key organizational initiatives across JFF and JFFLabs. His work includes the design, development, and incubation of new initiatives supporting JFF’s mission of accelerating the alignment and transformation of the American workforce and education systems to ensure access to economic advancement for all.

Before joining JFF, David spent more than seven years as a senior policy advisor at the U.S. Department of Education. He was a key architect of the department’s higher education innovation agenda during the Obama administration and later served in the Office of the Secretary’s Office of Educational Technology. Some key policies and projects he worked on yielded new and refreshed federal activities, including the EQUIP pilots, First in the World grant program, and the Higher Ed Ecosystem Challenge. He also led a series of convenings by the Department of Education and the Obama White House to promote innovation.

David has appeared in media coverage on NPR, the PBS News Hour, Inside Higher Ed, U.S. News & World Report, and Federal News Radio. He has spoken at a range of events and conferences, including at the White House, the Aspen Institute, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the ASU+GSV Summit, SXSW EDU, Educause, the American Association of Colleges and Universities, and LearnLaunch. A popular speaker at college campuses across the country, David is also a Senior Scholar at Georgetown University’s Center for New Designs in Learning.