Steven M. LaNasa

Steve LaNasa

Steve serves as the Director of the National Higher Education Benchmarking Institute, and comes with more than 25 years of higher education experience, in both two- and four-year institutions.  Formerly the President of Donnelly College, his administrative experience also includes leadership roles in academic, fiscal, and student affairs, as well as human resources and information technology.  As a faculty member, his research and teaching focuses on college access, organizational performance and student success.  

He holds a Ph.D. from Penn State where he served in the Center for the Study of Higher Education.

Michelle D. Taylor

Michelle Taylor

Michelle Taylor is the Senior Research & Data Analyst at the National Higher Education Benchmarking Institute. She conducts the data collection, analytics and reporting functions for a variety of national community college projects including the National Community College Benchmark Project (NCCBP) and the Cost and Productivity Project and the Workforce Training Benchmark Project.

Before joining the institute, she worked as a Senior Marketing Research Manager at H&R Block as well as led marketing research efforts for several other companies including American Express and American Century Investments.

Additionally, she was a Research Analyst at the Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State University. At CEDBR, she primarily collected, analyzed and disseminated business, economic and demographic information in addition to maintaining several database including state retail sales database and the information database. She also managed the CEDBR’s Annual Economic Outlook Conference.

Michelle received her MBA with an emphasis in International Business and Marketing from The Pennsylvania State University’s Smeal College of Business. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in Business from Washburn University.

Daniel J. Ferguson

Danny Ferguson

Daniel Ferguson is the Software Application Developer for the National Higher Education Benchmarking Institute. He creates and maintains the web apps that power the institute's newest projects. Prior to his work at the institute, Dan built web applications in the following industries: retail, banking, transportation logistics, social networking and journalism.

Dan received a bachelor's degree in Linguistics from Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri. His programming skills are self-taught through involvement in open source projects.