Scholarship America Names Robert C. Ballard as President & CEO

Former USA Funds executive to take the helm of national nonprofit as focus on college affordability takes the national spotlight.

MINNEAPOLIS (October 5, 2015) – Scholarship America® is proud to announce the hiring of its new President & CEO, Robert C. (Bob) Ballard, effective September 21, 2015. Mr. Ballard has more than 30 years of higher education financing experience, most recently having served as Senior Vice President of Philanthropy at USA Funds where he directed all philanthropic programs and grant-making activities, totaling more than $21.4 million in 2014 to promote access and success in higher education. His experience also includes leadership positions at Sallie Mae, Citibank and EDULINX Canada Corporation, all of which focused on supporting financing for college students. He is extensively involved in national and local charitable organizations, including having served as Board Chair for Indiana Dollars for Scholars® and as a member of Scholarship America’s own Board of Trustees since 2012.

Mr. Ballard joins Scholarship America just following the launch of its first public policy platform and as a new strategic planning process is underway, which will define the organization’s goals and direction for the next several years. “Bob’s broad and deep knowledge of education finance, decades of experience in both nonprofit and for-profit organizations, and his personal passion for the mission of Scholarship America, make him the perfect leader to help today’s students complete their degrees with manageable debt levels,” said Mike Ryan, Board Chair, Scholarship America.

Mr. Ballard’s professional career has been primarily focused on helping students successfully access and complete their postsecondary education, accompanied by a long history as an engaged and passionate volunteer for charitable organizations and causes that support students. “I am honored to have this opportunity to lead Scholarship America because it unites my entire career’s work with my personal passion for helping students in an organization whose mission is more relevant than ever as our nation looks for solutions to improve college affordability for all students,” said Ballard.

Lauren Segal, having served in the role since 2010, recently announced her retirement due to health issues. Ms. Segal will continue to serve in an executive advisory role until the end of the year to ensure a smooth leadership transition. Bob Ballard will be based at Scholarship America’s Minneapolis headquarters office beginning Sept. 21.


Mimi Daly Larson

About Scholarship America
For nearly 60 years, Scholarship America has worked directly with students, parents, colleges, businesses and communities to empower people to fulfill their college dreams. As the nation’s largest provider of private scholarships, having distributed over $3.1 billion to more than 2 million students, Scholarship America is now working to further engage the private sector to support programs and policies that advance equity in postsecondary education and help students overcome barriers to access, persistence and attainment. More information is available at and by following@scholamerica.

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