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Executive Leadership

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Angela Selden , Chief Executive Officer

Angela Selden was appointed CEO of APEI in September 2019. Ms. Selden brings more than 30 years of experience in technology and technology-enabled services, both within private-equity and publicly traded environments, and has deep experience executing business transformation initiatives for Fortune 500 clients. She was previously CEO and board member of DIGARC, a leading education technology provider to higher education institutions. Previous roles include CEO of Workforce Insight, a global, strategic workforce consulting, analytics and services company serving Fortune 100 clients, CEO and Executive Co-Chairman of Arise Virtual Solutions, a virtual workforce solutions outsourcer, and interim CEO of Skybridge Americas, a global contact center and provider of fulfillment solutions. Ms. Selden serves on the University of St. Thomas, Opus College of Business Strategic Board of Governors and was honored as the University's Entrepreneur of the Year for 2012. Ms. Selden currently serves as Chairman of DinerIQ and as a board member of TalentWave. Earlier in her career, Ms. Selden spent 18 years at Accenture, including serving as the Managing Partner, leading the North American Consumer and Industrial Products group to significant growth.

Ms. Selden graduated from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN with a Bachelor of Arts in both Accounting and Computer Science.

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Richard W. Sunderland Jr., CPA , Executive Vice President
Chief Financial Officer

Richard “Rick” Sunderland was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer effective January 2014. Mr. Sunderland joined the organization in February 2011 as a consultant providing several critical program enhancements, user testing, project implementation and process change management. In December 2012, he was appointed to lead the finance and student financial aid departments of American Public University System (APUS) as Senior Vice President of Finance.

Prior to joining APUS, he served as the Chief Financial Officer of NovaSom, Inc., building all of the company’s corporate financial functions and providing strong financial leadership during a period of rapid growth from 2008 to 2010. In addition, Mr. Sunderland served as Chief Financial Officer of Active Day, Inc. between 2005 and 2008, and in various roles, including as Controller, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, at NeighborCare, Inc. from 1993 to 2004.

Mr. Sunderland has over 20 years of experience at leading the financial and operational functions of large established public companies, as well as in building the financial operations of emerging growth companies. During his career, he also served as Senior Manager at Price Waterhouse (now PwC). In addition to being a Certified Public Accountant, Mr. Sunderland holds a M.B.A. in Finance and Accounting from Amos Tuck School of Business Administration, Dartmouth College and a B.A. in Economics from Dartmouth College.

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Jeff Tognola , Executive Vice President
Chief Experience Officer

Jeff Tognola joined APEI as Chief Experience Officer in January 2021. Mr. Tognola is responsible for enabling outstanding end-to-end student experiences through marketing, brand building, career services, and overall student experience transformation for all APEI education units.

Mr. Tognola was previously the Senior Vice President, Commercial Operations, Chief Marketing Officer, and Chief Operating Officer for Laureate Education’s online flagship institution, Walden University. Mr. Tognola brings more than 25 years of marketing, customer experience, and leadership from global companies including AT&T, Prudential Financial, and Medco Health Solutions, in addition to the last 10 years in higher education at Laureate Education. His expertise runs the entire marketing gamut, spanning brand building, consumer marketing, digital, mobile, creative services, acquisition, retention, and event management.

Mr. Tognola has a BS in Information Systems from Stockton University and an MBA from Farleigh Dickinson University.

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Tom Beckett , Senior Vice President
General Counsel

Mr. Thomas Beckett joined American Public University System (APUS) in 2011 and serves as general counsel and secretary. Mr. Beckett also serves on the Board of Directors of Shenandoah Telecommunications Company. Prior to joining APUS, Mr. Beckett was the General Counsel and Chief Operating Officer of InnoZen, Inc. (now CURE Pharmaceutical) and HealthSport, Inc., pharmaceutical and dietary supplement technology companies located in California. Mr. Beckett also held various other leadership positions at these companies. Prior to this work, Mr. Beckett was an attorney at the international law firms King & Spalding LLP and Holland & Knight LLP.

Mr. Beckett earned a B.A. degree from the University of Virginia and a law degree (J.D., with honors) from the University of Florida College of Law.

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Amy Bieberdorf , Senior Vice President
Strategy, Growth, and Innovation Officer

Ms. Amy Bieberdorf joined APEI in December 2021 as the Senior Vice President, Strategy, Growth, and Innovation Officer. She collaborates with APUS, Rasmussen, Hondros, and Graduate School USA leadership to develop, prioritize, and implement education initiatives that drive organic growth.

Ms. Bieberdorf comes to APEI with deep strategic and operational experience with consumer-oriented companies. Her 10 years of strategy consulting experience spans across retail and consumer products clients at Bain & Company and The Boston Consulting Group. She has also been an independent consultant, working directly with Estee Lauder.

Additionally, Ms. Bieberdorf spent five years running Manhattan Mini Storage, where she implemented pricing, process, and organizational changes to drive organic growth. Early in her career, she worked with The Gap, Inc., to help launch and grow Old Navy into a $6B brand.

Ms. Bieberdorf holds a BA in Literature from Columbia University and an MBA in Marketing from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Kevin Delano , Senior Vice President
Chief Operations Officer, Business Unit Services

Kevin Delano joined APEI in September 2021 and leads APEI’s Education Unit Services team to drive outstanding centralized support for all of APEI’s operating units. He brings a strong background in transforming support functions across industries, including education, technology, and consulting.

Mr. Delano spent seven years as the chief financial officer for Rasmussen University. In this role, he had oversight of accounting/finance, human capital, and the business office. He helped lead Rasmussen during a time of significant transition that saw increased enrollments, geographic expansion, and its transition from “college” to “university.”

Previously, he served as director of finance at Nokia, leading international teams in North America, the Netherlands, and India, to drive improvements in people, processes, and technology across departments. Mr. Delano spent his early career in public accounting and consulting roles working with a multitude of different industries.

Mr. Delano is a certified public accountant (CPA). He earned an MBA from Washington University in St. Louis and a BS in Accounting from the University of Southern California.

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Melissa Frey, CPA , Senior Vice President
Controller

Ms. Frey joined American Public University System in October of 2004, and held a variety of finance positions prior to her current role as Vice President, Controller. During her tenure at APUS, Ms. Frey has assisted with the design and implementation of automated processes including invoicing, refunding, and general ledger and cash reconciliations. She has also assisted with the preparation of monthly, quarterly, and annual financial statements, as well as financial and non-financial reporting. Ms. Frey manages the university’s business office which includes student, government and third party billing and collections, and student accounts. In addition, she is responsible for financial systems project requirements, prioritization, and quality assurance.

Prior to joining APUS, Ms. Frey had extensive experience working in corporate finance for Learning Tree International, Columbia International, and T. Rowe Price. Responsibilities in these roles included reporting and analysis, revenue recognition, and reconciliation.

Ms. Frey received her MBA in IT Project Management from American Public University and a B.S. in Accounting from University Maryland University College.

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Andy McShane , Senior Vice President
Engagement, Automation, and Performance Analytics

Andy McShane joined APEI in February 2022 as Senior Vice President, Engagement, Automation, and Performance Analytics. His focus is on creating a best-in-class experience throughout the student journey, including managing websites, marketing automation and lead nurturing capabilities, journey and audience strategy, and marketing and media analytics.
 
Previously, Mr. McShane served as CEO of an investment education platform and as CMO of a portfolio management software company, overseeing all facets of marketing and sales, including demand generation, product marketing, funnel marketing, and user experience. While serving as CMO, he created a data-centered system that rapidly measured and optimized every aspect of the customer journey, and in just two years he doubled customer growth, revenue, and EBITDA.
 
Mr. McShane also possesses deep experience in education. Prior to his time in finance, Andy spent seven years at Laureate Education as Executive Director of Digital Marketing where he led affiliate marketing, international marketing, and the entire digital user experience for five global institutions in over 100 countries. During his tenure, he consistently drove improvements in acquisition and retention rates through robust content marketing, geo-targeting, and conversion rate optimization strategies.
 
He attended the Berklee College of Music and earned his BA in English Language and Literature from the University of Maryland.

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Steve Somers, CFA , Senior Vice President
Chief Strategy and Corporate Development Officer

Steve joined APEI in June of 2020 and is responsible for advancing APEI’s business strategy and corporate development initiatives. He has extensive transaction experience, having previously completed over 45 M&A and corporate finance transactions across the Education & Training, e-commerce and Wireless industries.

Prior to APEI, Mr. Somers spent almost 10 years in the education industry, serving most recently as VP of Corporate Development at Kaplan, Inc. for 5 years, where he executed over 15 deals as a strategic partner across Kaplan’s various business units. Previously, he was VP of Corporate Development, Investor Relations & Treasury at Rosetta Stone where he helped expand Rosetta’s language business through two acquisitions and enter the literacy business with the acquisition of Lexia Learning. Before his time in the education space, Mr. Somers led M&A and IR at two public companies - first in the wireless industry with SunCom Wireless, where he led it’s sale to T-Mobile and then at GSI Commerce in the e-commerce industry where he helped grow GSI before it’s sale to Ebay. Earlier in his career, Mr. Somers was an equity research analyst at DLJ.

Mr. Somers is a Charted Financial Analyst (CFA) and earned a B.S. in Business and Economics with a concentration in Finance from Lehigh University and an MBA from Villanova University.