2017 Titans of Technology: Clarke Porter
Originally published on Minneapolis/St.Paul Business Journal
For the past 40 years, Clarke Porter has spent his career identifying opportunities for technology to revolutionize business.
In 1976, he developed software to deliver the first computer-based exam for the National Association of Securities Dealers (now the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority). He co-founded Virtual University Enterprise in 1994 and continued leading the development of advanced test administration technology.
Clarke Porter of Pearson VUE
Source: NANCY KUEHN | MSPBJ
VUE was acquired by Pearson, and in 2001, Porter left to found Integral7, where he led development of a cloud-based credential management product. He sold that business to Pearson VUE and became vice president of credential management for the company. In 2013, he took over the strategic development and general oversight of Acclaim, Pearson’s digital badging system that has issued millions of badges backed by IT organizations such as IBM, Microsoft and Adobe. They are verified by employers and have resulted in job offers, promotions and recognition by peers.
Porter also helps to develop and mentor the next generation of tech innovators.
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What makes you excited to come to work in the morning? I get to work every day with a high-performing team of IT, marketing and business development professionals who are building the Acclaim offering from the ground up. I love being on the leading edge of emerging technologies and services.
What’s the biggest challenge facing the IT industry in Minnesota? We have a lot of high-tech companies here in Minnesota that are competing for our talent, in addition to other regions that try to draw our talent away. The scarcity of IT talent can subdue the growth of our businesses.
How would you solve it? It’s a multipart solution. We need to encourage students attending our great schools to pursue IT and STEM coursework, complement academic training with real world internships and professional certifications, and show the students a pathway to great careers. We also need to continue to fuel our emerging startup/entrepreneur ecosystem (such as Minnesota Cup, St. Thomas business concept competition, tax credits for investors, Meet Ups) so that professionals see a pathway to owning their own company and making a difference in Minnesota.
Vice president, credential management, Pearson VUE
Education: Bachelor of Arts, mathematics, Towson University; Master of Science, education, The Johns Hopkins University
Family: Wife, Phyllis Thomson; daughter, Kate