Lande Ajose, Ph.D.

As Senior Vice President, Lande leads our Post-Secondary and Transitions to Work Program Area, within which she also directs California Competes, previously a stand-alone project. The project develops and advocates for bold yet pragmatic policy improvements to boost California’s postsecondary degree attainment. Lande has spearheaded work in Sacramento, calling for California to close the looming gap of 2.4 million degrees and urging the state to create a statewide oversight entity to provide innovative policy solutions for addressing the state’s education and workforce challenges. Lande’s expertise spans urban labor markets and higher education policy. Her work in higher education began as an admissions officer at Vassar College, continued as a senior program officer at the James Irvine Foundation and included being a researcher at MDRC, where she managed a comprehensive evaluation of the Achieving the Dream initiative. Prior to joining California Competes, Lande was the Managing Director at Informing Change, a consulting firm that helps nonprofits and foundations develop and evaluate their strategic initiatives. Her commitment to the nonprofit sector includes current board service with the Institute for College Access and Success (TICAS), REDF, Equal Measure, the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP) and St. Paul’s Episcopal School. In November 2014 she was appointed to the California Student Aid Commission by Governor Jerry Brown. She holds a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an M.A. from the School of Public Affairs at UCLA, and an A.B. from Occidental College.