Executive Leadership Team

Renaissance Leadership

Renaissance’s leadership team not only possesses deep knowledge and experience in education, they also have a well-rounded business perspective to meet today’s challenges. Above all, this team is thoroughly committed to teacher success and accelerating learning for all.

Chris Bauleke

Chief Executive Officer

Chris Bauleke brings more than 20 years of leadership experience to his role at Renaissance.

Sarah DiFrancesco

Chief Marketing Officer

Sarah DiFrancesco brings over 20 years of leadership experience to Renaissance.

Lynn Danko

Chief Financial Officer

Lynn has been a technology leader for more than 15 years, with responsibility for finance.

Todd Brekhus

Chief Product Officer

Todd is an education technology innovator with more than 25 years of experience.

Kim Mitchell

Chief People Officer

Kim Mitchell leads our people-focused activities at Renaissance – from recruiting and onboarding to development and total rewards.

Erez Tocker

Managing Director – International

Erez has extensive experience in international education and heads international operations for Renaissance.

Dan Conrad

General Counsel

Dan joined Renaissance in 2018, bringing 20 years of legal experience as an in-house and private practice attorney.

Gene M. Kerns

Vice President and Chief Academic Officer

Gene M. Kerns, EdD, is a third-generation educator with teaching experience from elementary through the university level.

James R. McBride

Chief Psychometrician

James R. McBride, PhD, is vice president and chief psychometrician for Renaissance.

Renaissance is privately held by Francisco Partners, a leading global private equity firm, which specializes in investments in technology and technology-enabled services businesses. For more information on Francisco Partners, please visit https://www.franciscopartners.com/.

Renaissance Leadership

Chris Bauleke

Chief Executive Officer

Chris Bauleke brings more than 20 years of leadership experience to his role at Renaissance. Most recently, he served as CEO of myON, which is now part of Renaissance’s comprehensive suite of digital literacy solutions. Prior to myON, Bauleke helped grow and scale leading healthcare services and information technology companies, serving as CEO of Healthland, and in various leadership roles at McKesson. Bauleke earned an MBA from University of Saint Thomas and his bachelor of arts degree in Business Management from Hamline University.

Renaissance Leadership

Sarah DiFrancesco

Chief Marketing Officer

Sarah DiFrancesco brings over 20 years of leadership experience to Renaissance. Most recently, she served as vice president of marketing for myON. Prior to joining myON, Sarah was vice president of business development for Barnes & Noble. In her role she was responsible for Barnes & Noble’s K-12 division, national events and initiatives and the educator loyalty program. Sarah was instrumental in launching the NOOK in Education program that was adopted in several large school districts across the country. She holds a BSBA in marketing from the University of Denver.

Renaissance Leadership

Lynn Danko

Chief Financial Officer

Lynn has been a technology leader for more than 15 years, with responsibility for finance, accounting, legal, and compliance initiatives at both SEC-registered and privately-owned companies. She began her career at KPMG in Minneapolis, and later worked at Lawson Software, Amcom Software, Ecolab, and Newscycle Solutions. She has significant experience leading M&A initiatives for global organizations, from securing financing to diligence and integration. She holds a bachelor’s in finance from Minnesota State University.

Renaissance Leadership

Todd Brekhus

Chief Product Officer

Todd is an education technology innovator with more than 25 years of experience. Most recently, he helped create myON, a personalized literacy platform that is part of Renaissance’s literacy portfolio. Previously, Todd served as Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for PLATO Learning, President and COO of Learning Elements, and Education Program Director for MCI WorldCom. Todd also spent eight years as a technology leader in schools. In 2014, he was awarded the prestigious Lamp Lighter Visionary Award by the Association of American Publishers and was named the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient by SIIA Company CODiE Awards.

Renaissance Leadership

Kim Mitchell

Chief People Officer

Kim Mitchell leads our people-focused activities at Renaissance – from recruiting and onboarding to development and total rewards. She brings deep experience in making organizations’ Human Resources and Talent Management functions a strategic capability and differentiator. Kim joined Renaissance from Centura Health where she led the non-profit hospital system’s Talent Management organization. She also worked in senior Human Resources roles at First Data Corporation, and led her own Talent Management practice, VeriCarta Consulting. Kim earned her master’s degree in education from Colorado State University, and her bachelor of arts from Regis University.

Renaissance Leadership

Erez Tocker

Managing Director – International

Erez has extensive experience in international education and heads international operations for Renaissance. He came to Renaissance from Kaplan Inc., where he had several roles including Senior Vice President, New Business Initiatives and Managing Director, Kaplan International English. He led the growth of Kaplan’s English business to become an industry leader with 45 colleges providing English language courses, study abroad programs, and unforgettable experiences. Erez previously set up a British education company in China and has a background in corporate law practice. Erez holds an LLB from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and an MBA from INSEAD.

Renaissance Leadership

Dan Conrad

General Counsel

Dan joined Renaissance in 2018, bringing 20 years of legal experience as an in-house and private practice attorney. Prior to joining Renaissance, he was Deputy General Counsel for The Kraft Heinz Company. During his five years at Kraft, Dan managed the U.S. legal team including overseeing significant litigation, labor & employment, intellectual property, legal operations, crisis management, privacy, and marketing & regulatory compliance. When Kraft and Heinz merged in 2015, he played a central role in restructuring the new company’s legal department. Previously, he was an attorney at Dallas-based law firm Jones Day. Dan earned his Juris Doctor degree from University of Pittsburgh School of Law and his Bachelor of Science in Physics from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Renaissance Leadership

Gene M. Kerns

Vice President and Chief Academic Officer

Gene M. Kerns, EdD, is a third-generation educator with teaching experience from elementary through the university level, in addition to his K–12 administrative experience. He is currently chief academic officer for Renaissance. He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Longwood College in Virginia and a doctor of education degree from the University of Delaware. He is the co-author of two books: Informative Assessment: When It’s Not About a Grade and Unlocking Student Talent: The New Science of Developing Expertise.

Renaissance Leadership

James R. McBride

Chief Psychometrician

James R. McBride, PhD, is vice president and chief psychometrician for Renaissance. He has been instrumental in the practical application of item response theory and has conducted test development and personnel research for a variety of organizations. He is co-editor of a leading book on the development of computerized adaptive testing (CAT) and has authored numerous journal articles, professional papers, book chapters, and technical reports.