Michele Spires

Assistant Vice President, National Service and Defense Solutions

Michele Spires is a highly accomplished and dedicated leader in higher education who specializes in credit for prior learning (CPL), program quality assurance, learner success, and institutional policy advancement. With nearly three decades of experience in post-traditional, workforce, and military education, she deeply understands the evolving landscape of learning beyond traditional classrooms.

Her commitment to transformative initiatives and collaboration among higher education institutions, employers, and independent learners showcases her forward-thinking approach. As the assistant vice president of national service and defense solutions at the American Council on Education (ACE), Spires is dedicated to advancing ACE’s vision, mission, and strategy to positively impact learners and the broader higher education community.

In her current role, Spires leads external engagement efforts to position ACE as a trusted authority on CPL and an advocate for programs and policies that benefit the military community. Spires serves on national boards, steering committees, and task forces, representing ACE and expanding its thought leadership. She acts as a spokesperson for ACE on military activities, engagements, and in the media to effectively communicate its mission and impact. Notably, her contributions to evaluating educational experiences beyond the traditional classroom, as evidenced by her co-authorship of Recognition of Learning Across Military and Corporate Settings: How ACE Blends Standard Processes, Disciplinary Expertise, and Context to Ensure Quality, highlight her pivotal role in ensuring quality education. Her involvement in various boards and leadership positions, such as with the Council of College and Military Educators, PsychArmor, and the George W. Bush Institute's Stand-To Veteran Higher Education Task Force, underscores her commitment to educational excellence

Recognized for her significant contributions and sought-after expertise in bridging the skills gap in education, Spires champions quality, equity, economic mobility, and innovation. Her attendance at the National Security Forum with the Air War College further exemplifies her dedication to advancing education and supporting the military community. Her personal connection as the spouse of an Air Force retiree adds valuable perspective to her work.