Jack Kosakowski – President and CEO – Leadership
Jack is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Junior Achievement USA. Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices.
Today, JA reaches nearly 4.8 million students per year in 105 markets across the United States, with an additional 5.2 million students served by operations in 100 other countries worldwide. Kosakowski has total oversight of Junior Achievement in the United States.
Starting as a student in the Junior Achievement program in Toledo, Ohio, he attended the University of Toledo on a Junior Achievement scholarship and has since served in a variety of staff positions with increasing levels of responsibility over the past 40 years. He was named President and CEO of Junior Achievement USA in 2007.
Jack was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve a two-year term on the President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy in January 2008. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Achievement Foundation, is a past member of the United States Commission for UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization), and serves on the Council on Competitiveness' Learn to Compete Commission. Kosakowski was also named a Trustee of America's Promise Alliance.
Buzzy Thibodeaux – Executive Vice President – Leadership
Buzzy Thibodeaux, Executive Vice President Junior Achievement USA, is responsible for providing leadership on initiatives that impact the organization on a national basis, with particular focus on strengthening JA's relationships on Capitol Hill aligned with financial capability, work and career readiness and entrepreneurship education for young people. As the number two person nationally, he focuses on the national implementation of organizational strategies, the engagement of the national board of directors, and the advancement of partnerships that position Junior Achievement USA as a national leader in the areas of youth, education, and economic development. He also oversees the field operations service functions of the organization, striving to build sustainable growth with impact in the more than 100 local JA Areas in the U.S.
Buzzy joined Junior Achievement's Headquarters in August of 1997 as Vice President of Field Marketing. He was promoted to Senior Vice President, Marketing & Communications in 2000, making him responsible for the national marketing and communications process. Buzzy transitioned his national role to initiate JA's public affairs effort in the Nation's Capital as Senior Vice President of Government Relations in July of 2003. He was then named SVP Southern US Region in 2005 and promoted to Executive Vice President Junior Achievement USA in 2010, widening his scope of leadership responsibility.
His 16 years of local JA Area experience has provided invaluable context for his current national role. Prior to serving at the national office, he was President of Junior Achievement of Greater Baton Rouge and Acadiana. Under his leadership, the office earned the Peak Performance Award four times and the National Junior Achievement Summit Award for nine consecutive years. Before this opportunity, Buzzy held several positions within Junior Achievement of Greater New Orleans, which is where he started his JA career in 1981.
Ed Priem – Chief Financial Officer – Leadership
Ed Priem is the Chief Financial Officer of Junior Achievement USA. Ed is a seasoned finance professional with extensive experience working for and consulting with a variety of nonprofit organizations over his professional career. Previously, Ed served as Junior Achievement USA's Director of Procurement and Senior Accountant from 2010 to 2012.
Prior to joining (and re-joining) JA USA, Ed held a number of escalating accounting leadership positions at various public accounting firms, non-profit and for-profit organizations. Ed oversaw the Colorado nonprofit Form 990 practice at the accounting and advisory firm BKD, LLP and was the South Region's Form 990 practice leader for Capin Crouse, LLP. Ed also served as the Associate Controller for Colorado College and the Vice President of Finance for American Vein & Vascular Institute, reporting directly to the CEO. As a member of the senior leadership team, he led the Institute's finance group, as well as negotiated contracts and agreements with vendors, insurance companies and Medicaid. Ed is a voting member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' (AICPA) Exempt Organizations Taxation Technical Resource Panel.
Ed holds an active CPA license in the state of Colorado and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accounts and the Colorado Society of CPA's. Ed has a B.S. in accounting from the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.
Jackie S. Dant – Senior Vice President Operations – Operations
Jackie currently serves as Senior Vice President Operations for Junior Achievement USA. Working with JA Area Offices she provides service and support, ranging from strategic planning and board development to Capstone program management. Key responsibilities include establishing strong relationships with local JA Board of Directors and JA Area staff that will result in JA Area sustainability and strong fiscal management. Currently she is working with leaders from the field on the JA Pathways program initiative and Co-chairs the Capstone Program Steering Committee. Both of these are key organization initiatives that will result in student growth and impact along with stronger JA Area operational standards. In 2016 she was the first JA USA recipient of the JA MVP Award, the highest honor that reflects how she exemplifies and Models Values as a Professional in the organization.
Prior to her working at the National office, she spent 19 years working in the field at JA of Kentuckiana, Inc. (Louisville, KY). While on staff she was responsible for staff development, financial and organizational operations, and program implementation. She was part of a team that managed a successful $6 million capital campaign, strategic planning, district boards, programs, operations and special events while in the Louisville office. Since beginning with JA in 1987 she has served on numerous national task forces and committees. She is an alumnus from the JA Company program and served many years as a JA volunteer. She is a graduate from the University of Louisville with a major in Business Administration.
Mary Catherine Desrosiers – Senior Vice President — Education and Learning Technologies – Education
MC has oversight of the education group, managing the blended transformation and directing ideation, design, implementation and evaluation of new program and learning technology.
Prior to joining JA, MC was Chief Program Development Officer for the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, where she oversaw the business operations that included research, design, development, evaluation and delivery of an array of association programs, products, and services designed for member and nonmember practitioners, researchers, policymakers, and other constituents. MC has served as the Chief Strategy and Operations officer at Integrated Educational Strategies Inc. (IES) in the creation of new products and services dedicated to assisting schools with the implementation of a "blended model" of instruction. She also served as the Sr. Vice President of School and Academics for Kaplan Virtual Learning, managing the online/blended school delivery of educational programs for charter schools and districts. MC also served as SVP of Product Development, Systems and Operations of K12, Inc., as one of the first executives, she took the startup to a successful IPO and completed their first acquisition. MC served with Origin Technology in Business, a national e-business technology practice. As managing director of Origin Technology, she designed and produced training and customer support applications for the educational and commercial markets. She served as director for Philips Electronics NV, where she established Fountain works, an internal best-of-breed digital/Internet technology organization, and helped develop and implement global e-business strategies. MC also established and managed Studio Interactive which produced award-winning educational software. She started her career as a consultant at Booz, Allen & Hamilton. MC holds a BS in Business and Finance from Mount Saint Mary's University and an MBA from Marymount University.
MC's first experience with Junior Achievement was in high school as a participant in JA Company Program in the Washington, DC area. She has returned to JA with a passion for preparing student to own their future and at a critical time in JA's history as the organization transitions to blended learning. MC is married to Ed Desrosiers, and has a son, Sean, and daughter, Casey, who are both attending college. She is a gourmet cook, who loves to walk, read, travel and play golf.
Tim Greinert – Senior Vice President – Development
Tim Greinert joined Junior Achievement in 1985 as a High School Program Manager for Junior Achievement of Wisconsin. After advancing to the role of Operations Field Vice President there, he moved to the National Office as National Director of Training and Development from 1993-1997. Tim returned to the field as the Operations Senior Vice President for Junior Achievement in the Twin Cities (now the Upper Midwest) in 1997 becoming President there in 2001. He was a finalist for the Karl Flemke Award in recognition of his success as a new JA Area President. Tim became President of Junior Achievement of Wisconsin in 2003.
During his tenure as President of Junior Achievement of Wisconsin, Tim grew the student reach to over 165,000 in 1,122 schools. He led the successful capital campaign to raise over $10 million to build the Junior Achievement Kohl's Education Center which houses JA BizTown® and JA Finance Park®. Tim currently serves on the Governor's Council for Financial Literacy in addition to numerous community advisory roles.
Tim earned his Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh, and completed his Masters degree in Leadership and Human Resource Management through the University of Colorado – Colorado Springs.
Ed Grocholski – Senior Vice President – Brand
Ed rejoined Junior Achievement USA's National Office in September 2012 after spending more than a decade in Washington, D.C., in a variety of strategic communications and marketing roles.
Most recently, Ed was a partner in the Lindberg Group LLC in Washington, D.C. He was responsible for business development, management and strategic communications planning and implementation for the firm's clients. In this role he developed social media and media relations strategies for the U.S. Department of State's Fulbright Program and developed digital assets for the Council on Foundations' Public-Philanthropic Partnerships. He developed and implemented marketing and public relations programs for a variety of organizations including the National Association of Workforce Boards, the U.S. Department of Labor, Columbia University, and the National Academy Foundation.
As vice president of Public Education for Ogilvy Public Relations, he developed several marketing and public relations programs for nationwide initiatives including National Job Shadow Day and the U.S. Department of Education NAEP – Nation's Report Card. At Ogilvy he managed a group responsible for $2 million in annual billings.
Early in his career, Ed served as Junior Achievement's director of Public Relations and Development. He has remained an active supporter of JA and worked to develop JA's media strategy.
Christy Kunz – Senior Vice President – Operations
A member of the Junior Achievement USA Operations Team, Christy provides service and support to JA Area offices which includes strategic planning, board development and learning experiences management. She has participated on several JA USA strategic planning teams and serves as a team resource for board development, governance and consolidations
Prior to joining Junior Achievement USA, Christy served as President of JA of the Heartland, a 25 county area based in Moline, Illinois, from March 2003-August 2007. She held a variety of positions working with JA programs, capstone implementation, fundraising, district board development, strategic planning and operations. Christy began her JA career as the Administrative Assistant to the President in July, 1990.
In 2005, Christy was awarded the Karl Flemke Pioneer Achievement Award which is presented annually to one emerging JA leader in the country. In 2008, she presented the Athena Leadership Award in the Quad Cities.
Christy graduated from St. Ambrose University with BA in Business Administration and works as a remote JA USA employee from her home in DeWitt, IA.
Susan Luu – Senior Vice President – Business Improvement
Susan began her career with Junior Achievement in 2006, possessing an extensive background in analyzing, designing, implementing, and leadership of large supply chain management systems and business/technology process improvement projects with The Inventure Group, Motorola, and Henkel International. Susan previously served as Executive Vice President for Junior Achievement of Arizona, achieving more than 14 percent student growth in her first year, managing two JA BizTown® facility construction projects, and implementing a new class management system. Susan had statewide responsibilities and in 2009-2010 led fundraising and education teams to generate more than $1.2 million in revenue and delivered programs to nearly 80,000 students.
As the Senior Vice President, Business Improvement, Susan is responsible for JA's technology infrastructure and enterprise applications. Her focus is to ensure technology enables our associates to advance our mission by improving work efficiencies and meeting the evolving needs of our supporters.
Leslie Pierce – Senior Vice President – Talent and Organization Development
Leslie joined Junior Achievement USA in October, 2005, bringing extensive experience in training, business operations and organization design to her role at JA. Leslie began her professional life teaching secondary language arts at Glynn Academy High School in Brunswick, Georgia, before transitioning to the corporate sector. Leslie has worked in a variety of roles in the U.S. and abroad for three major financial service corporations, managing training and development, business improvement, international human resources, and a customer service line operation. She opened offices across Europe and Asia and founded her own consulting practice.
As the Senior Vice President, Talent and Organization Development, Leslie is responsible for the training and development of JA associates in the United States, employment and employee relations, conferences and events, and organizational design. Her focus is ensuring that JA has a comprehensive learning architecture to enable JA associates to be successful in their roles, developing and overseeing events that advance the JA mission, and creating strategic processes that optimize the human element of Junior Achievement across all functional areas of its business.
Leslie earned her MA in Language Arts Education from the University of Oklahoma and a Masters of Teaching Arts from the University of Tulsa.
Steve Schmidt – Senior Vice President – Operations
Steve served 18 years in the field with JA of Wisconsin prior to coming to Junior Achievement in 2004 as the regional vice president of the Western U.S. Promoted to senior vice president of the Midwestern U.S. region in July of 2006, Steve became SVP — Operations of the newly created Junior Achievement USA in 2009.
Steve is responsible for providing service to 26 field markets with a focus on training, individual giving and district operations.