James "Jim" H. Shelton III, Senior Advisor

James “Jim” Shelton is the Chief Impact Officer at 2U. He is also the former Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Department of Education. In this role, Jim led a range of management, policy, and program functions in support of educational access and excellence for America’s children, especially those least advantaged. While in government, he served as the Executive Director of the President’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative and participated in multiple interagency efforts focused on poverty reduction, economic development, entrepreneurship, and increased opportunity. From these roles, he implemented new approaches to using technology, data, evidence, public-private partnership and collective action to increase impact in policies and programs including the Investing in Innovation Fund (i3), Promise Neighborhoods, and ConnectED.    

Jim began his career developing computer systems, and later served as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. After McKinsey, Jim joined Knowledge Universe, Inc., where he invested in and operated a range of education related businesses until he co-founded LearnNow, a company dedicated to providing high quality schools - “community academies” - in low-income communities. Shelton was also a partner at NewSchools Venture Fund and then the program director for education at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. He has chaired numerous non-profit boards and led domestic and international social sector initiatives ranging from economic development to voter education in emerging democracies.

Jim holds a bachelor's degree in computer science from Morehouse College as well as master’s degrees in both business administration and education from Stanford GSB and GSE.