John McKernan

Education, Human Resources, Law / Legal, Politics / Government

Travels from Maine, USA

John McKernan's speaking fee falls within range:
$5,000 to $10,000 (Speakers' virtual presentation fees are generally around 60-80% of the in-person fee range noted here.)

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John McKernan Profile

  • He is the senior advisor to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, where he works to promote the country's well-being by promoting entrepreneurial skills and ties between businesses and communities.

  • As the two-time governor of Maine and an experienced CEO, he combines business acumen with political aptitude.

  • Author of Making the Grade, he has been a key advocate of educational reform in his state of Maine as well as on a federal level through his work as chairman of the National School-to-Work Advisory Council.
  • Two-time governor of Maine, John McKernan has dedicated over 30 years to boosting the U.S.’s competitive advantage through his work in educational and economic policy. The experienced public servant and former CEO currently serves as a senior advisor to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, which works to further Americans’ entrepreneurial skills and capacity to innovate as a means of building stronger communities and a better quality of life.

    After completing service in the Maine Army National Guard, Governor McKernan became one of the youngest members of the Maine State House of Representatives. He served two terms while at the same time pursuing his law degree. As governor, he created centers of innovation and invested millions of dollars in Maine’s education system in order to make Maine not just economically competitive with other states, but other countries as well. He was recognized as an Outstanding Governor by the American Society for Training and Development for his contributions to advancing education and human resources.

    Widely viewed as “ahead of his time,” Governor McKernan published the book Making the Grade, which laid out a roadmap for creating apprenticeship programs in American secondary schools. He continued to push educational reform through his work as chairman of the National School-to-Work Advisory Council in Washington, D.C. Additionally, he served as chairman of the International Advisory Board of the Center for Career Development in South Portland, Maine.

    • View Extended/Alternate Bio
        • Former Maine Governor John McKernan served as Chief Executive Office and Vice Chairman of Education Management Corporation (EDMC) and as a member of its Board of Directors. He joined the company in June 1999. Prior to being named CEO in September 2003, he served EDMC as President and Vice Chairman. In that role, he was responsible for the strategic expansion of the company and also oversaw the Law, Education, Human Resources and Strategic Development Departments.

      Prior to joining EDMC, he was President and CEO of McKernan Enterprises, Inc., a consulting and investment firm, from 1995-1999.

      He served his native state of Maine for two terms in the United States Congress and then as Governor for two four-year terms from 1987 to 1995. While in office, Governor McKernan won national recognition for leadership and innovation in education and human resources, serving as Chair of the Education Commission of the States in 1992 and the National Education Goals Panel in 1994. In 1992 he was named the Outstanding Governor by the American Society for Training and Development and in 1994 he authored Making the Grade, a book on youth apprenticeship.

      Governor McKernan has won national recognition for leadership and innovation in education and human resources. The National Alliance of Business honored him in 1993 with the first annual School-to-Work transition award and in 1989 by naming Maine State of the Year. He was also recognized as Outstanding Governor in 1992 by the American Society for Training and Development.

      Governor McKernan is a graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Maine School of Law.

      He and his wife, former U. S. Senator Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine) reside in Falmouth, Maine and Washington, D.C.

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    John McKernan's Speech Descriptions

    John McKernan unpacks the education, skills, and conditions needed to give the U.S. a long-term competitive advantage worldwide. The longtime educational and economic reformer offers a roadmap to bettering American society through closing skills gaps and boosting business leaders’ partnerships with their regions. Governor McKernan explores how employers, educators, and communities can leverage opportunities, provide schooling and training, and develop a world-class workforce.

      Topics Include:

      • Making America′s Education Second to None
      • The Future of School-to-Work Programs
      • National Politics

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