Don Fraser, Jr.

Senior Vice President, Design + Innovation

As the Lab’s Senior Vice President, Design + Innovation, Don is responsible for measuring and driving innovation and emerging programs at the Lab, as well as strengthening the Lab’s reputation as a leader in equity-based, human-centered design and the design of scalable education + workforce solutions. Don is instrumental in identifying strategic partners to amplify the Lab’s design work and associated products and building ecosystem partnerships and employer relationships. In addition, he is responsible for the Lab’s internship program and Employer Brain Trust working group.

Don’s portfolio includes Design Practice and Programs, Emerging Programs, and Innovation. He leads the Lab’s work on generative AI and developing design criteria for populations including rural communities, parent learners, and justice-impacted/involved individuals. He developed the Lab Way — our commitment to excellence in how we do what we do and show up internally as colleagues and externally for our partners — and is a thought and accountability partner for the Lab’s education designers, helping them meet their goals and push innovation in our design processes.

Don is a nationally recognized expert in postsecondary planning and college success. He has an acute understanding of the learner experience, as well as ways in which schools across the K-16 spectrum can develop innovative programs in order to foster learner success and increase economic mobility, especially for those from historically underrepresented populations. He believes deeply in the combination of technology and interpersonal relationships as a means to improve learner outcomes.

Prior to his work at the Lab, Don founded CollegeSnapps, a Washington, D.C.-based education technology startup company. He also served as the Director of Education for the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), where he created educational opportunities for high school counselors and college admission professionals including Critical Components, NACAC’s first new conference in over 20 years.

Don began his work as a school counselor and brings his roots in psychology and history of transforming student perspectives to the Lab’s innovation and design practices.

 

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