10 Jan 2023

Press Release

Jessica Cunningham Joins the Coleridge Initiative as Vice President of State Programs

New York – The Coleridge Initiative, Inc. announced on Tuesday, January 10th that Dr. Jessica Cunningham has been appointed as the new Vice President of State Programs. As the Vice President of State Programs, Dr. Cunningham will help lead the continued expansion of state engagement and collaborative research within Coleridge’s Administrative Data Research Facility.

“I am pleased to announce that Jessica will be joining the Coleridge team,” said Dr. Ahu Yildirmaz, CEO of the Coleridge Initiative. “Jessica has been an integral member of our external community and a key partner in helping us develop and expand the Multi-State Collaboratives. She has served as an executive committee member for the Southern Regional Collaborative and has led the Multi-State Collaborative effort for cross-state postsecondary education and workforce outcomes out of the Midwest Collaborative.”

“I have been passionate about the Coleridge Initiative since its inception from my involvement as a leading state partner both in training and innovative research,” said Dr. Jessica Cunningham, Vice President of State Programs, Coleridge Initiative. “It is an honor to join the effort, and I hope to continue to support the actionable use of data for the public good. I look forward to strengthening current state and federal partner relationships in a different capacity while fostering new connections to expand the use of data in research and training.”

Dr. Cunningham previously served as Executive Director and Labor Market Information Director at the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS). She led the development, maintenance, and reporting for one of the nation’s leading longitudinal data systems (Kentucky Longitudinal Data System) and the Kentucky Labor Market Information. During her tenure, she led the Kentucky research through three biannual strategic agendas to inform policymakers, practitioners, and the public on topics related to program outcomes across education, public assistance, criminal justice, and workforce. Dr. Cunningham brings with her experience in writing, managing, and evaluating state, federal, and philanthropic grants as well as teaching and research experience from her time as faculty in North Carolina and Kentucky.

Dr. Cunningham earned a doctorate in Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation from the University of Kentucky specializing in Measurement and Statistics. She also earned a master’s of science and a bachelor’s of science in Mathematics from the University of Kentucky and Georgetown College respectively.

About The Coleridge Initiative, Inc.

The Coleridge Initiative is a nonprofit organization working with governments to ensure that data are more effectively used for public decision-making. Coleridge works with government agencies to create value by providing public agencies with the opportunity to enhance their workforce data literacy in order to develop better policies for the public good. They facilitate the development of collaborations within and across states allowing for new technologies to be developed through the secure access to and sharing of confidential microdata. They do this by providing a platform to securely link confidential data within and across states and agencies, and by providing training classes to agency staff. Their platform is the Administrative Data Research Facility (ADRF) which is a secure, FedRAMP-certified, cloud-based environment that enables government agencies to link their longitudinal data with other states and agencies. For more information about Coleridge, the ADRF, and their training program, visit: www.coleridgeinitiative.org