Board Of Directors

Michele Ernst

2019 – 2020 Board of Directors Chair

(Term of Office Concludes 2023)

An education professional with over 20 years of experience in higher education serving adult students in an online, residential and blended environment, Dr. Ernst has a successful history of managing all functional areas of a college, with specific emphasis in academic affairs, including curriculum development, regulatory affairs and accreditation, student retention, training, and faculty/staff development. Dr. Ernst has devoted her career to helping students reach their educational goals. Dr. Ernst is currently the Chief Academic and Compliance Officer at SAE USA.



Aaron Edwards

2019 -2020 Board of Director Vice Chair

(Term of Office Concludes 2023)

Aaron Edwards is the Founder of Edwards Strategies, a higher education company focused on enrollment solutions. Aaron has over 15 years of experience developing high-impact enrollment strategies in marketing, admissions and research. Aaron has managed multiple aspects of education marketing and student life cycle innovation. His drive and focus for developing and implementing solutions has positioned his clients for long-term, sustainable success.  During his career he has served on boards, committees and counsels dedicated to enhancing the value and direction of higher education.


Jeremiah Scarbrough


(Term of Office Concludes 2023)

Jeremiah has served as Regional Director of Operations for the Aviation Institute of Maintenance for the past six years. Overall, Jeremiah has fifteen years of experience working in the proprietary school industry with thirteen of those years being in a leadership position. Previously, he has worked as the Director of Global Operations for Strayer University, Director of High School Admissions at Everest Institute, and Director of Operations with Kaplan University. Jeremiah also supports the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and its mission by serving as a Team Leader for accreditation visits. He is well versed in all areas of student operations, with excellent management, customer service, project management, sales, and strategic implementation skills. Jeremiah holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from the University of Florida.


Tony Palmieri

(Term of Office Concludes 2022)

Tony Palmieri is owner and CEO of Valley College, a 4-location career college in West Virginia and Ohio that celebrates its 32nd anniversary in 2019. Mr. Palmieri purchased Valley College in August 2011. Since then he has expanded and modernized the college with new facilities and programs supported by passionate, caring staff to best serve students and employers in each of its markets.  Prior to acquiring Valley College, Mr. Palmieri was Director of Sales for Campus Management Corporation, was co-founder of a college that was later sold and spent 16 of his first years in industry in education technology sales. Mr. Palmieri holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University in New York.



Aaron Lacey

(Term of Office Concludes 2023)

Aaron Lacey is the leader of Thompson Coburn’s Higher Education practice, host of the law firm’s popular Higher Education Webinar Series, and editorial director of REGucation, the firm’s higher education law and policy blog.  An experienced attorney with time served both as outside and in-house counsel, Aaron’s practice is dedicated entirely to assisting postsecondary institutions to navigate complex legal and regulatory matters.  He has specialized, substantive expertise in the array of federal, state, and accrediting agency laws and standards that govern postsecondary institutions, and is a frequent writer and speaker on topics relating to higher education policy and regulation.  In October 2017, Aaron was selected by the U.S. Department of Education to serve as one of 17 primary negotiators charged with overhauling the Department’s complex and controversial “borrower defense” rule. The Department designated Aaron to represent and negotiate on behalf of general counsels, attorneys, and compliance officers at postsecondary institutions nationwide.  He served in this capacity through March 2018, when the negotiations concluded.  Aaron is a member of the National Association of College and University Attorneys and of the American Bar Association.


Jami Frazier

(Term of Office Concludes 2024)

Jami Frazier has over 20 years’ experience in education and currently serves as President and CEO for Concorde Career Colleges, Inc. Prior to her current role, Jami served as the Sr. Vice President of Operations, Vice President of Operations– Central Region, and Vice President of Student Affairs.

Prior to joining Concorde, Jami served in the higher education division of Kaplan Inc. During her Kaplan tenure, Jami’s roles included Director of Finance, Director of Operations and Campus President. Prior to her time in proprietary postsecondary education, she worked in secondary education for ACCESS, a nonprofit education organization. As an ACCESS Advisor, Jami facilitated after-school mentoring programs, college visits and advising sessions for college admittance.

Jami holds a degree from the University of Nebraska in Human Resources.