Leaders at EDSI
EDSI is full of talented and passionate people. Click on each team member below to learn more about how they help contribute to seeing through our clients eyes and delivering more than they expect.
Kevin Schnieders is the CEO and President of EDSI (Educational Data Systems, Inc.). Striving to be the solution for companies and people in transition, EDSI is a workforce development, customized training and consulting company. The company focuses on providing innovative solutions to close workforce skills gaps around the country.
Kevin started with EDSI as a Training Consultant in 1994. He gained additional responsibilities as the firm’s HR Manager and Director of Operations, before serving six years as the Chief Operating Officer. In 2007, he assumed the role of CEO, or as he refers to it, the “Chief Servant Leader,” and the company has tripled in revenue and number of locations, added 400 new employees and increased profitability since Kevin made this transition. This success can be attributed to putting others first, listening closely to their insights and needs, and helping them understand their unique strengths. Kevin says, “I had the humility to understand that I had purchased a great company, a tremendous respect for the legacy left by our Founder, and an unwavering desire to help people.”
Outside of EDSI, Kevin mentors a high school student for Building Bridges, a charity that inspires children to believe in themselves by connecting them with caring adults. He has also been a partner to a grade-school student at Cornerstone Schools since 2007, and serves as Board President for the Cornerstone Health High School. In addition, Kevin serves as a committee member for the Rainbow Connection, an organization that helps dreams come true for Michigan children with life-threatening illnesses and provides support to their families.
He over-achieved when he married his wife, Wendy, and is the annoyingly proud father of two exceptional girls, Lauren and Riley. Kevin is a lifelong resident of Michigan. He completed his undergraduate degree at Albion College, and graduated with a Masters of Science in Learning and Organizational Change from Northwestern University.
Jim Bitterle, Managing Partner of EDSI Consulting, brings 20 years of corporate leadership experience and more than fifteen years of management consulting experience to EDSI. Jim’s experience in a variety of operational and organizational improvement and strategy consulting engagements, as well as interim executive services, corporate turnarounds and merger integrations, gives him great perspective in understanding the needs of EDSI’s clients.
With more than 10 years as an executive with full P&L responsibility for both domestic and international business units for multi-national corporations, Jim has a track record of successfully building organizations that have grown and prospered under his leadership.
Jim has a MBA in Finance and Marketing, with honors, from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University. He also holds a BA degree in Operations Management from The Broad School of Management at Michigan State University.
Robert Dancer joined EDSI’s team as the Chief Financial Officer in 2009. He brings a wealth of knowledge to EDSI as a Certified Public Accountant with experience in a wide range of industries including public accounting, automotive and plastics. Having owned and operated his own business, Robert brings an entrepreneurial spirit to EDSI and is happiest helping to grow the company in order to assist more individuals and companies in transition. Robert is a graduate of Albion College.
Christina has been with EDSI since 2009, and serves as strategic leader for Workforce1 Career Centers in Manhattan, Staten Island, and Queens, as well as multiple initiatives across NYC and Long Island which specialize in serving Veterans.
In this capacity, she manages a leadership team to promote a business-driven model of job placement for more than 40,000 jobseekers annually. This team works with jobseekers, employers and community partners to develop large-scale employment and training initiatives, enabling effective implementation of programs and policies across the Centers. As Regional Director of Operations, Christina is responsible for achieving program goals and managing staff and budgets in each program.
Christina believes strongly in EDSI's culture, and feels it fits perfectly into all aspects of her life. Her other activities involve volunteerism for children’s and animal rescue related causes. She also was the youngest member to sit on the “Listening to the City” Panel in 2002, an initiative that helped reshape New York City’s skyline with the Freedom Tower.
With a background in pharmaceuticals and finance sales management, Christina holds a B. A. in Business Administration from Berkeley College, New York, NY.
Roe has been with EDSI since 1998 and has held a variety of positions that have given her broad experience for her current position as Regional Director of Operations. Roe is responsible for achieving program goals and managing staff and budgets for programs in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Washington, D.C. and New York City. These programs serve the welfare population, Adult and Dislocated Workers, refugees, youth, noncustodial parents and ex-offenders. Roe has distinguished herself by bringing innovative ideas to program operation and in hiring and the development of employee training for the start-up of new programs.
Roe also has an extensive training background. She was instrumental in the development of our customer service curriculum, called Workforce STRATEGIES. Roe also delivers training to EDSI staff on leadership, communication and team building. Roe is a graduate of Dickinson College.
Joe Farrell, Regional Director of Operations, has extensive experience in operations and management both as a Senior Manager for the Philadelphia Workforce Investment Board and as a Site Administrator. Joe managed the largest One-Stop in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and instituted performance goals and metrics for all partners to make the site that served 3,000 to 4,000 customers per month more responsive to job seekers and employers. He is currently responsible for employment and training programs, including On-the-Job Training and Youth Services contracts, in Pennsylvania and North Carolina.
Joe provides industry specific insight to our team, identifying leadership issues and concerns facing workforce development professionals and targeting key metrics to improve programs’ performance. Joe has a Bachelor’s degree in Politics and a Master of Public Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Colleen Henning has been with EDSI since 2001 and has held a number of positions which have given her a solid foundation for her current position. As Regional Director of Operations, Colleen oversees programs in Chicago, Michigan and Pennsylvania, and is responsible for achieving program goals and managing staff and budgets in each program. These programs serve employers, the welfare population, Adult and Dislocated Workers, refugees, youth, noncustodial parents and ex-offenders.
Colleen has a deep passion for helping others and, in addition to her great work at EDSI, she is the founding board member of The Open Door Inc., a non-profit supportive housing program for adults living with HIV. Colleen is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh.
Arlene has been an integral member of the EDSI family since 1997. Prior to selection as Chief Talent Officer, she served the EDSI community in a variety of key roles in operations, project management, training and human resources. These opportunities helped her to see EDSI through the eyes of customers and team members, ultimately helping to shape the vision for EDSI's current talent strategy.
Arlene has a passion for helping the EDSI team be the best they can be and working according to their strengths. She believes that having a skilled, committed and engaged workforce is essential to carrying out EDSI’s mission of helping people and companies in transition. Her primary functions include developing strategy around EDSI’s business needs and execution of the overall talent plan and integrating recruitment, performance and engagement approaches throughout the company.
Arlene has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Michigan and a Master of Arts in Counseling from Spring Arbor University. She is a licensed therapist and enjoys volunteering her time to help others in the community.
Ken has more than 20 years of leadership experience working with top-tier companies, labor organizations and government agencies identifying the skill needs of their workforces, and developing and implementing solutions to meet those needs. His vision and expertise in workforce development has helped organizations with notable growth in the technical skills of their skilled workers.
Nationally, Ken has been working with the public transit industry on certification and maintenance training standards projects, as well as many joint labor/management training projects throughout the country. Ken holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and a MS in Corporate Finance and Economics from Walsh College.
Chuck is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt with over 30 years of experience in offering solutions to issues in product engineering, manufacturing operations and program management. As a Certified Turnaround Professional, Chuck works with client companies to modify operational cultures and restore sound financial systems to turnaround facilities or complete organizations. Chuck’s extensive use of lean enterprise tools improves organization structures and operational proficiency and enhances sales pipelines.
Chuck has performed multiple valuations, participated in divestures and liquidations, conducted due-diligence and facilitated acquisitions of businesses. His intimate knowledge of operations supplies valuable insight to our clients when making these difficult decisions.
Chuck holds a BS in mechanical engineering from Michigan State University, as well as an MBA from the University of Phoenix, and benefits from over 10 years of leadership experience as the president of CMM Engineering, a consulting firm with the objective of helping under-performing public and private firms.
Will joined EDSI in 2008 and has held a number of positions that have provided him with a detailed understanding of EDSI’s business offerings and put him in a unique leadership position. These previous positions have allowed Will to contribute in strategic operations analysis, business consulting services, and serve as a leader in the development of EDSI’s proprietary skills analysis software system, Skilldex. Currently, as Regional Director of Operations, Will oversees programs and projects in Chicago, Ohio and Michigan, which serve employers, adults and dislocated workers and youth.
Internally at EDSI, Will has led teams to target key organizational initiatives and has assisted national program improvement efforts across EDSI’s programs. Will’s passions involve helping companies and people in transition, which has allowed him to actively participate in nearly all of EDSI’s business offerings. A graduate of Michigan State University, Will’s excitement around the work EDSI performs allows him to design creative future business outputs to benefit the organization.
Kevin Watson is the Director of Business Development for EDSI. Over the last decade, Kevin has had the pleasure of working with hundreds of accomplished clients. As more and more baby boomers start to retire, Kevin is passionate about working with HR Managers and Hiring Managers to (1) capture institutional knowledge before it “walks out the door,” (2) pass that knowledge onto incumbent workers, and (3) efficiently and effectively identify, train and/or upgrade the skills of our next generation of workers.
By creating solutions to solve the issues that HR and Hiring Managers struggle with, Kevin has been able to allow them to focus on finding the best candidate for every job. Kevin’s primary focus is to create enthusiasm in his clients, see through their eyes, understand their needs and deliver more than they expect.
Kevin’s other activities include mentoring a local high school student and maintaining a leadership role in a local charity event that he helped to create. Since its inception in 2009, his third party fundraiser (Bras for a Cause Michigan) has raised over $330,000, with 100 percent of the proceeds going to benefit Gilda’s Club of Metro Detroit. Gilda’s Club provides cost-free, social and emotional support for people affected by cancer. Kevin is a graduate of Michigan State University.