President, Achieve, Inc.
Michael Cohen is a nationally recognized leader in education policy and standards based reform. He has been the President of Achieve since 2003. In 2006, Education Week ranked Achieve as the 7th most influential education policy organization in the nation, and ranked Achieve’s landmark report, Ready or Not: Creating a High School Diploma That Counts, as among the most influential research studies in the past decade.
Under Mike’s leadership Achieve formed the American Diploma Project Network, a growing network of states committed to improving preparation for postsecondary education and 21st century careers. Governors, chief s state school officers, and state higher education and business leaders in these states have committed to align high school standards, curriculum, assessments and accountability with the knowledge and skills high school graduates need for success in postsecondary education and careers.
Mike held several senior education positions in the Clinton Administration, including Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education at the U.S. Department of Education, Special Assistant to the President for Education Policy at the White House, and Senior Advisor to U.S. Secretary of Education Richard Riley. He led the Administration’s effort to design, enact and implement Goals 2000, the first substantial federal initiative to support state-led standards-based education reform. He also played an instrumental role in the development of all of the Administration’s K-12 education initiatives.
Earlier in his career, Mike held key positions in several national organizations that work with state education policymakers, including as Director of Education Policy for the National Governors Association, and Director of Policy Development and Planning for the National Association of State Boards of Education. Mike began his career at the National Institute of Education, where he led the Effective Schools research.