Executive Leadership Team
Chief Executive Officer
Jeff Tarr is Chief Executive Officer of Skillsoft and brings a successful track record of building tech-enabled services companies into trusted industry leaders.
Over the last two decades, he has transformed three publicly traded, tech-enabled information companies into industry leaders. He previously served as Chief Executive Officer and a director of DigitalGlobe, the world leader in satellite imagery and geospatial intelligence, from 2011 until the sale of the company to MDA (now Maxar Technologies) in 2017. Prior to DigitalGlobe, Jeff was President and Chief Operating Officer of IHS (now IHS Markit) and Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the publicly traded business information company, Hoover’s, Inc. (now a division of D&B). He began his career with Bain & Company.
Jeff currently serves on the board of EchoStar. He is also a member of the Stanford University Graduate School of Business Advisory Council and was previously Chairman of the school’s Management Board. Jeff served on the board of The Corporate Executive Board Company (CEB) until the sale of the company to Gartner in 2017 and on the board of DSST Public Schools, one of the leading open enrollment school systems in the United States. He also served as co-Chair of the World Economic Forum Council on the Future of Space Technologies and co-Chair of the Annual Meeting of New Champions in Dalian China. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Jeff holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs.
General Manager - Codecademy Consumer
As General Manager of the T&D Consumer business, Kunal oversees the B2C business under the Codecademy brand leading strategy, product development and go-to-market efforts. Kunal has been at Codecademy since 2019 and previously led strategy and product development for Codecademy before taking on his current role in 2022.
Kunal has strong experience building consumer products and businesses, previously working with startup incubator Rocket Internet where he started and led multiple ventures. Most recently he was COO at Snapp which is now one of the largest internet companies in the Middle East. Kunal started in strategy consulting with Bain and Company.
Kunal has a Bachelors in Engineering (with Distinction) from the University of Delhi and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Chief Marketing Officer/Chief Sustainability Officer
As Chief Marketing Officer/Chief Sustainability Officer, Michelle leads a global marketing organization, focused on transforming today’s workforce for tomorrow’s economy. Since joining the company, she has been responsible for Skillsoft’s global marketing strategy, which includes generating awareness, driving preference, and building affinity for Skillsoft. Additionally – and perhaps most importantly – Michelle serves as the company's brand evangelist, helping to build a vibrant community of passionate learners.
With more than 25 years of marketing, branding, and strategy experience, Michelle has made it her personal mission to support the advancement of women in business. Prior to Skillsoft, she served as Chief Marketing Officer of IBM Watson, where she was instrumental in developing the first “Women Leaders in AI” program, which honors women who put AI to work across industries and around the globe. She also served as the global head of marketing for The Weather Company, an IBM Business, helping companies understand how to anticipate, plan for, and ultimately make better decisions – with greater confidence – in the face of weather.
Michelle is a prolific speaker on a range of topics, including the war for talent, digital transformation, and marketing in a post-pandemic world. She covers these topics and more as the host of Skillsoft's podcast, The Edge, now in its second season. She has authored countless papers covering a range of business and marketing topics, was at the center of Skillsoft’s leadership role in DEI through free “Leadercamps,” and has taught two Percipio courses on the Pink Pandemic and Public Speaking.
Michelle is also a founding member of CMO Huddles, a group dedicated to bringing together and empowering highly effective B2B CMOs to share, care, and dare each other to greatness. Michelle holds a Master’s degree from Simmons University and sits on the pro side of the Oxford comma debate.
Chief Revenue Officer
Matthew Glitzer is currently the Chief Revenue Officer at Skillsoft. He most recently served as Vice President, Security Sales, IBM Americas where he was responsible for all Security related products and services. Previously, Matt served as Vice President, IBM’s Integrated Security Business Unit - Asia Pacific, where he was responsible for Security Software sales and Services and was a member of IBM’s regional Senior Leadership Team. In Matt’s prior roles in Greater China for IBM, he was a member of the Global Technology Services leadership team holding the positions of General Manager, Global Technology Services, Hong Kong and Head of Client Management and Offerings. In these roles he had country and regional P&L responsibility for all managed service clients, as well as technology solutioning, consulting and go-to-market offerings. Before joining IBM in 2005, he was vice president of Field Alliances for SAP America.
Matt holds a B.S. in Political Science from Rutgers College and a Masters in Business Administration from the George Washington University. He holds a certification from IBM’s Harvard Business School Certification Program and is a graduate of IBM’s Master Deal Making program through the Wharton School of Business.
He currently lives in Cary, North Carolina with his wife Colleen and two of their four children. In his leisure time, he enjoys cooking, entertaining, and is an avid tennis player.
General Manager - ILT
Jim Gruskin currently serves as General Manager for Skillsoft’s Instructor-Led Training business. During his tenure at Global Knowledge prior to the merger with Skillsoft, Jim served as the company’s Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Financial Officer.
Jim has spent over 20 years as a transformational leader and senior executive with a focus on strategy, finance and operations.
Jim has executed over 45 capital market and strategic transactions with a total value of over $75 billion. During his career he has worked as an investment banker, investor, strategic thought leader, and senior corporate finance decision maker.
Previous experience includes Managing Partner of Cobb Bay Partners, a mergers and acquisitions advisory firm; Head of Strategic Finance and Treasurer at marketing solutions provider Dex One Corporation; Head of Business Development and Chief Accounting Officer at regional newspaper publisher Journal Register Company; technology, media and telecom investment banker at Morgan Stanley; and private equity investor at Prudential Capital.
Jim received a bachelor of science degree in economics with a concentration in finance from The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, and an MBA in finance from The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.
Chief People Officer
As Chief People Officer, Ciara oversees Skillsoft’s people and workforce strategies, which includes accelerating efforts to attract, retain, and develop the best talent in the industry and advancing the company’s culture of leadership and learning.
Ciara brings more than 20 years of HR, total rewards, workforce transformation, and M&A experience to her role. Prior to joining Skillsoft, she served as Head of Total Rewards at Syngenta, where she implemented a best-in-class benefits offering, developed and implemented pay management processes designed to drive equity, and managed her function through a period of transition from a regional to BU-based model. Additionally, she held HR Lead roles in Dell’s Total Rewards Team, as well as a senior HR leadership role on the EMEA HR Workstream for the Dell and EMC Corporation merger.
Earlier in her career, Ciara served as a global HR Integration Lead for the NBC Universal and Comcast Corporation merger and worked on global HR transformations for Fortune 500 companies at Deloitte Consulting.
Ciara holds a Bachelor of Business and Information Systems from University College Cork.
Apratim Purakayastha (AP)
Chief Product and Technology Officer, GM - B2B
As Skillsoft’s Chief Product and Technology Officer, AP is responsible for the overall strategy and product roadmaps for the entire Skillsoft portfolio. In addition, he is responsible for engineering, cloud operations, and support for Skillsoft enterprise learning platforms. He is also responsible for the digital and IT infrastructure across all areas in the Skillsoft group of companies. AP has held this role since 2016.
AP has extensive experience supporting rapidly growing technology companies, including as General Manager and SVP at SevOne, where he was responsible for the on-demand / SaaS business segment. He also served as Group President at ACI Worldwide and ran the on-demand payments division. AP started as a research staff member at IBM and became a Director of Software at IBM.
AP currently serves on the board of William Clarence Education, a K-12 education company. He has previously served on the board of Nuvepro, a cloud learning company. AP holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Duke University, M.S. in Computer Science from Washington State University, and a B.S. in Computer Science from Jadavpur University in India.
Chief Financial Officer
As Chief Financial Officer, Rich oversees Skillsoft’s global finance function including planning and analysis, treasury, tax, accounting, procurement, internal audit, and investor relations. Rich also leads Skillsoft’s corporate strategy and development activities focusing on investments to drive sustained organic and acquired growth for the business worldwide.
Bringing extensive experience to his role, Rich previously served as Chief Financial Officer for multiple market-leading public and private companies including ServiceSource and IHS Markit (acquired by SAP Global). In these positions, Rich oversaw global finance functions, built corporate strategy and development functions, and led the successful completion of more than 70 strategic acquisitions.
Rich was previously an advisor to Churchill Capital and a member of the Board of Directors for ServiceSource. He holds an MBA from the University of Denver and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Colorado where he graduated magna cum laude.
Chief Strategy Officer
Lindsey Padrino leads corporate strategy and business operations at Skillsoft. She brings over 20 years of experience transforming organizations and their employees.
Prior to joining Skillsoft, Lindsey spent a decade at McKinsey & Company where she helped clients with their go-to-market strategy, salesforce transformations, and talent strategies. She also built and led McKinsey’s Growth Academy, which delivered scalable, global talent programs to build and sustain world-class commercial capabilities that drive growth. Prior to McKinsey, she held leadership roles in several education organizations.
Lindsey lives in the Washington, D.C. area with her husband and her three young daughters. She is on the boards of CareerWise USA and the Colorado Education Initiative.
She holds an MBA from the Wharton School and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania.