About Us



Cheryl Vedoe, CEO

As a software engineer, marketer, and executive for computer companies including Digital Equipment, Apollo Computer, and Sun Microsystems, Cheryl experienced the impact of innovative technologies across industries. It was at Apple in 1992, as the head of the K-12 education division, that she first became involved with technology in education. That experience sparked in Cheryl a passion to help educators integrate technology to create new solutions to the challenges confronting schools today.

Cheryl then joined the founding team and served as CEO of Tenth Planet, a leading developer of multimedia content for elementary math and literacy instruction. Following an exciting period as CEO of Post Communications, an early innovator in email marketing, she returned to Apple as vice president of education products and marketing, heading up marketing efforts for K-12 and higher education. She also served as president of PowerSchool, a leader in web-based K-12 student information systems, and in September 2002 Cheryl joined Apex Learning® as president and CEO.  Drawing on her experience in both technology and education businesses, Cheryl leads Apex Learning's efforts to help schools make learning more accessible, relevant, and effective for today's students.

Cheryl holds a BA in Mathematics from Wheaton College, in Norton, Massachusetts, and an MBA from Northeastern University, in Boston, Massachusetts. She serves as a trustee of Wheaton College and is board chair of the Washington Technology Alliance.

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Cary Mark, Technology

Cary Mark brings over 15 years of executive experience in software product development and technology to his current role as vice president of technology at Apex Learning. He has spent the majority of his professional career in a technical environment, including senior technology management, software development and quality assurance. As Vice President of Technology at Apex Learning, Cary oversees the teams responsible for the company's technology needs - from operations of the production systems, to development of applications to deliver the digital curriculum solution, to all internal business needs.

Before joining Apex Learning, Cary led an engineering team at CoreLogic that developed a number of market leading SaaS applications utilized by mortgage lenders to eliminate fraud, reduce risk, and value properties in the mortgage lending industry. Previously, as the director of engineering at Apple Computer, Inc., he led the team responsible for developing a cross-platform, web-based student information system for K-12 private and public school districts. Before joining Apple, Cary served as the vice president of engineering at Transamerica Intellitech, a leading provider of information and software solutions for real estate industry professionals.

Cary holds a Bachelors of Science degree from DeVry Institute of Technology in Phoenix, AZ.

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Chuck Lanphier, Client Services

Chuck brings more than 15 years of diverse experience in technology businesses to his current role as vice president of client services at Apex Learning. Chuck leads the team responsible for helping students, teachers, and administrators achieve their goals and objectives with the company’s digital curriculum solutions. Chuck and his team consistently drive high levels of client satisfaction by focusing on program design, implementation, professional development, instruction, and user support.

Since joining Apex Learning in 2001, Chuck has been a key member of the management team and, in several sales and marketing positions, has made significant contributions to the company’s evolution. Chuck came to Apex Learning with a strong foundation in marketing, product management, and sales developed during his tenure at Gateway Inc. and Avenue A. Chuck holds a BS in business administration from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska.

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Cynthia Rogan, Marketing

Cynthia has had the pleasure of working for leading educational technology companies for more than 20 years. Throughout her career, Cynthia has focused on bringing to market tools and solutions that educators need in order to improve teaching and learning. She joined Apex Learning in April 2009; as vice president of marketing, she is responsible for marketing strategy and implementation.

Prior to joining Apex Learning, Cynthia was senior vice president of marketing of Wireless Generation; general manager of assessment at Scholastic; director of marketing for professional development at ETS; and vice president of marketing at LearningNetwork.com, an online unit of Pearson, Plc. Previously, she had served as vice president of sales and marketing at Tenth Planet, a developer of multimedia math and literacy content, and held various sales and marketing positions in the education division at Apple Computer. Cynthia holds a BS in business administration and a BS in accounting from Central Washington University.

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Jean Sharp, Content Development

Jean has 25 years of leadership and management experience in the education and software publishing industries. Her expertise includes software design, project management, technology implementation, curriculum strategy and development, and instructional design. As Vice President of Content Development at Apex Learning, Jean oversees the teams responsible for creating original curriculum solutions.

Prior to joining Apex Learning, Jean served as Vice President of Curriculum and Instruction for AdvancePath Academics, where she was responsible for overseeing curriculum design, implementation, and efficacy. Previously, Jean was Vice President of Curriculum Development at PLATO Learning Inc. Among her credits are numerous award-winning educational software products published for both school and consumer markets.

Jean holds a Masters Degree in Educational Technology and Instructional Design from the University of Oklahoma.

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Melissa Breakfield, Human Resources

Melissa brings over 28 years of professional experience to her current role as vice president of human resources at Apex Learning. Melissa first served as director of human resources at Apex Learning from 2001 to 2004, and rejoined the company in 2010 as chief of staff and human resources director. In her current role as vice president of human resources, Melissa leads the team responsible for the company's leadership development, policy framework, and human resources strategy.

Prior to rejoining Apex Learning, Melissa served as global human resources business partner and global human resources director at Accenture working in London for two years. Previously, Melissa was vice president of human resources at Q strategies, and held several HR leadership roles at Accenture.

Specializing in leadership development, talent retention, employee relations, human resources strategy and management, and performance management and business operations, Melissa has made significant contributions to the company's growth.

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Pete Papano, Finance

Pete Papano is a seasoned financial executive working with high growth companies in domestic and international markets. Prior to joining Apex Learning, he was the chief financial officer at four technology companies.

Pete was the chief financial officer of Captaris (CAPA) a software company in document management. Prior to Captaris, Pete was the chief financial officer of Evant, Inc., a venture-backed, software company with demand forecasting and merchandise planning products; QRS Corporation (QRSI), which hosted a catalog for multi-location retailers and their vendors; and The Dialog Corporation, a content development and search company. Pete began his business career in the telecommunications markets with GTE Corporation and with Sprint Corporation.

Pete has a Bachelor of Science degree in business with an emphasis in finance and a Masters of Business Administration degree in accounting from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He is a licensed CPA. Pete is on the board of Elder and Adult Day Services (EADS), a not for profit providing day services to frail seniors and developmentally disabled adults.

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Phil Lees, Sales

Phil has over 30 years of sales and  management experience in the education software publishing industry. He contributes a strong commitment to team performance and a customer-focused business philosophy to his current role as vice president of sales.

As a prior educator, Phil is passionate about instructional solutions that impact student achievement and inspire educators to succeed with all learners. Phil joined Apex Learning in 2012 as director of account management, and in 2013 was named west regional sales director. Prior to Apex Learning, he served as the vice president of sales and marketing at The Booksource Inc.; sales manager at Imagine Learning; national sales manager at Casio, Inc. Educational Products Group; regional manager at McGraw-Hill Publishing Company; as well as holding sales and account executive roles for Pearson Digital Learning.

Phil holds a BS in education from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

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