Abrupt Departure at Online Learning Consortium

Kathleen Ives, the organization's director since 2013, resigns suddenly and with no explanation. A deputy replaces her.

May 15, 2019
Kathleen S. Ives

The Online Learning Consortium on Tuesday announced the departure of Kathleen S. Ives, its chief executive officer and executive director since 2013, and her immediate replacement by another senior official on an interim basis.

The abrupt resignation took employees and others in the online learning orbit by surprise and led to speculation that Ives's departure had been forced.

But the organization's statement offered no insight into the reasons for her resignation, and Ives herself did not respond to a request for comment.

“During her tenure, Kathleen helped to position OLC as a self-sustaining organization that continues to evolve in order to best meet the needs of its institutional members,” Eric E. Fredericksen, president of the OLC Board of Directors and associate vice president for online learning at the University of Rochester, said in a prepared statement. “Under her leadership, the organization was able to successfully expand its membership, offer new products and services, and grow to serve institutions worldwide.”

OLC appointed Jennifer Mathes, the consortium's chief learning officer, as interim CEO.

The consortium, which emerged from what was previously known as the Sloan Consortium, stages conferences, publishes scholarly journals and otherwise works with colleges and their leaders to promote the use and quality of digital education.


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