Kathy Hurley is a 45-year veteran of the education industry. In December of 2014, Kathy retired from Pearson where she spent ten years and served as Executive Vice President, Education Alliances, for the Pearson Foundation. While she has retired from Pearson, she remains active in the education industry as a consultant, sharing her wealth of knowledge in both publishing and technology with companies, nonprofits, and associations. Kathy also serves as a national and international speaker on leadership, diversity in the business world, and gender equity issues.

Throughout her career in the education industry, Kathy has served in top positions in both publishing and technology companies, including executive positions with Pearson and IBM. She utilizes her expertise in education policy, sales, marketing, and business development to help further the work of top businesses, executive level customers, associations, and foundations.

Kathy currently serves on several key industry and education advisory boards, including, the Center for Teacher Quality (CTQ), Spark 101; the JASON Foundation; and the National Coalition for Technology and Education Training (NCTET). She remains active with the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) Education Division Board and the Association of American Publishers (AAP) PreK-12 Learning Group Board and is past president of both organizations as well as past chair of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills. She also serves as a senior industry advisor to several superintendent groups.

Kathy co-founded the Making IT Happen Award (MIH) with Deb deVries and Pat Walkington, which has since become an awards program operated by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). Over 600 MIH awards have been given to deserving winners across the US. In 2015, ISTE announced the MIT Global Award, which Kathy also had a hand in creating.

Her work throughout the years with various businesses and organizations has taken Kathy around the world into India, Australia, Uruguay, Costa Rica, England, France, Finland, Argentina, Indonesia, Cuba, New Zealand, Singapore, and other countries. She is sought after to speak and participate as a thought leader, and her global commitment and wealth of knowledge help organizations develop new and innovative approaches to education. In 2013, Kathy was selected as a Fellow of the Advanced Leadership Initiative (ALI) at Harvard University for 2014. Upon completing the ALI at Harvard, Kathy co-founded a global nonprofit organization called Girls Thinking Global, which since donated its assets to the Women’s Education Project (WEP), where Kathy sits on the board of directors.

In the 1990s, Kathy received several awards, but of particular note are the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) Leadership in Special Education Technology and Media Award and the National Catholic Education Association (NCEA) Leader Award for Excellence in Education. In 2003, she was inducted into the Association of Educational Publishers Hall of Fame for her achievements and service to the education publishing industry.  In addition, Hurley has received various awards for her service in the industry. In 2011, she was awarded the prestigious SIIA Ed Tech Impact Award. In 2001, Hurley received CoSN’s first-ever Outstanding Private Sector Achievement Award, which was later renamed the Kathy Hurley Private Sector Award. In 2010, she received an award for her 25 years of contributions to SIIA and the education industry at the CODiE Awards. In April 2014, the California Association of African-American Superintendents and Administrators (CAAASA) presented Kathy with an award to recognize her contribution to and ongoing support of diversity programs over the years. In December of 2014, Kathy was the first person to receive the new AAP Ambassador Award, which recognizes an individual that has helped the association establish strong relationships across the learning resource community. In April of 2015, in partnership with Priscilla Shumway, Kathy co-edited Real Women, Real Leaders:  Surviving and Succeeding in the Business World, which was published by Wiley. In June 2019, SIIA once again acknowledged Kathy’s contributions to the education technology sector by honoring her at the CODiE Awards with its prestigious Lifetime Achievement in Education Technology Award.

Kathy holds a B.A. degree in special education from the University of Dayton and a master’s degree in education from Jersey City State College. She is a former NJ teacher.