Hobsons Executive Joins NCAN Board

June 9, 2015

By Elizabeth Morgan, Director of External Relations
On May 5, the NCAN Board of Directors voted unanimously to approve Mr. Stephen M. Smith, president of Hobsons’ Advising & Admissions Solutions, as a board member to fill the unexpired term of Ms. Colette Hadley, who stepped down from the board in February to join the NCAN staff. The NCAN board is comprised of 13 voting members who can serve up to three consecutive three-year terms.
Mr. Smith joined Hobsons in 2007 through the acquisition of Naviance, a company he co-founded, which is now the leading college and career readiness solution for schools and districts. Today, Mr. Smith oversees Hobsons’ global product strategy, marketing, policy and research, and R&D, serving more than 12 million students and 10,000 schools, colleges, and universities in more than 90 countries. Earlier this year, he was instrumental in Hobsons’ acquisition of Starfish Retention Solutions, allowing Hobsons to create a seamless advising solution to help counselors support student success from grade school through graduate school.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Smith was vice president of digital product development at Peterson’s, then a division of The Thomson Corporation (now Thomson Reuters).

“Steve is not only an accomplished executive leader, he has a firsthand understanding of the many steps necessary for low-income students to navigate the path to college,” NCAN Board President Pranav Kothari said.  “His skills and experience will help NCAN continue to improve our support to the college access and success field so that more historically underserved students get the assistance they need to enter and complete a postsecondary credential.”
Mr. Smith believes in “finding your passion, not someone else’s” and wants to help students take ownership of their education so everyone has that opportunity. He credits his early mentors for helping him build his professional success: his parents, who were educators; his high school American history teacher; and his thesis advisor. He believes deeply in matching corporate commitment with personal action, and he practices this belief as a board member of NCAN member College Possible. Mr. Smith earned a bachelor of arts degree in history, cum laude, and an MBA from Cornell University.

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