New Director Tapped for Higher Education & Workforce Development Policy Center

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) is pleased to announce the appointment of David Socolow as director of the Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success.  With almost two decades’ experience  promoting workers’ economic security in federal and state government, on Capitol Hill, and in both union and corporate roles, David is uniquely qualified to lead CLASP’s work to help low-income people succeed through higher education and workforce development.

David served for four years as commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, after previously serving as director of New Jersey’s Unemployment Insurance Division and as senior advisor to the deputy secretary in the U.S. Department of Labor.   His accomplishments include working with New Jersey’s community colleges to help workers get college credit for completing apprenticeships, creating a statewide initiative offering literacy skills training to thousands of low-wage workers, and expanding the Workforce Learning Link program.  He also led Governor Jon Corzine’s successful effort to enact paid family leave, a key support for working families, in New Jersey.

David’s career has also included tenures as vice president for corporate affairs at Pinnacle Foods, legislative advocate at the AFL-CIO, and chief of staff for Congressman Robert E. Andrews.  His experience advocating for low-skill and low-wage workers and his extensive background designing and implementing effective federal and state policy will be major assets as CLASP’s Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success seizes upcoming opportunities.  These include implementing the just-enacted Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act and helping states develop “career pathways and systems” that help low-income participants earn credentials and access family-supporting employment.

We look forward to working with David to build on CLASP’s reputation as a trusted leader in the higher education and workforce development fields.  Now more than ever, we are committed to advancing policies that promote opportunity for low-income people and support economic growth.

David succeeds Evelyn Ganzglass, who will remain with CLASP as a senior fellow after nine years of distinguished service as director of the Center for Postsecondary and Economic Success.