Earnest expands c-suite with new executive hires
By Edlyn Cardoza
Earnest, a FinTech company dedicated to making higher education accessible and affordable for everyone, recently announced the hire of Mike Horowitz as its new Chief Product Officer. Horowitz, who brings twenty years of product management experience to his new position at Earnest, joins returning Earnest employee and Chief Operating Officer, Jason Williams, on the executive team as they work to further develop the company’s innovative student lending platform.
“At Earnest, we’re focused on developing products that have a meaningful impact on the lives of students and graduates. Jason and Mike are two perfect people to help further that goal,” said Earnest CEO David Green. “Jason not only has historical knowledge of the company but also brings valuable experience leading teams for operational success. Likewise, Mike’s extensive experience in product development makes him a natural fit as our CPO, and we’re thrilled to welcome them both to Earnest’s executive team.”
Williams, who began his current role in June, returned to Earnest after four years as Chief Customer Officer, at 401(k) fintech Guideline. He has previously worked as Chief of Staff and Head of Business Operations at Earnest.
“I took out student loans for both my undergraduate and graduate degrees, so I know what it’s like to balance student debt and a career. I also went through the financial aid process on my own, which made me acutely aware of the challenges that students face when choosing how to pay for college,” said Williams. “At Earnest we’re tackling both of those problems head on, simplifying the loan process for new students and making it easier for borrowers to refinance and pay down their student loans faster.”
Horowitz has held top product roles at car-purchasing FinTech Fair.com, customer data platform Bridg, Ticketmaster, and several other startups. He also managed multiple successful products at Google.
“Having college-aged children myself, I know how stressful the financial side of higher education can be. Earnest is reimagining the process by making loan applications and refinancing simple and accessible for students, graduates, and parents,” said Horowitz. “I’m excited to join Earnest’s fast-growing team of passionate, mission-driven innovators in building a product that helps more borrowers pay down their student debt and achieve financial freedom.”
Earnest has been refinancing student loans since 2015, helping more than 180,000 borrowers refinance more than $16.5 billion in student loan debt and empowering them to pay back their student loans on their own terms. In 2019, the company introduced its private student loan offering with one of the fastest application processes available, providing results in less than two minutes. Today, Earnest leads the industry in student loan refinancing with over $4.4 billion in originations in the first three quarters of 2021. In 2021, Earnest also acquired financial aid and scholarship application platform Going Merry to further its mission to make higher education accessible and affordable to everyone and minimize the debt students need to take on in the first place.
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