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Cathy Cavanaugh, PhD

Chief Experience Officer

cathy.cavanuagh@coe.ufl.edu

Cathy Cavanaugh is the Chief Experience Officer and research scientist at the Lastinger Center for Learning. She leads the teams developing the Center’s technology and data platforms, designing and creating professional learning experiences, and supporting practitioners and clients.

Cathy has dedicated her career to partnering with education leaders and organizations around the world to transform learning and teaching. Prior to joining the Lastinger Center, Cathy held roles at Microsoft as the Principal Program Manager for Professional Development and Analytics in the education products group and the Director of Teaching and Learning in Worldwide Education. Highlights of her many notable contributions to education include leading a statewide education transformation initiative, launching a virtual school in Western Australia and working in higher education leadership and research in the Middle East during a national mobile learning program. 

She has served as a professor and researcher in educational technology in U.S. universities and was a Fulbright Senior Scholar, advancing e-learning in Nepal. Cathy has also developed successful and innovative online degree and professional development programs as well as blended learning programs for K-12 students, and directed professional development centers in the US. She was a STEM classroom teacher in the U.S. and Caribbean. Her prolific research portfolio includes 150 publications that focus on technology-empowered teaching and learning in virtual schools, online and blended learning, teacher development, and mobile learning. Cathy holds a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction from the University of South Florida. Outside of work, Cathy loves exploring the world through travel, hiking and kayaking. She has a goal to visit every Florida state park and U.S. national park.