David Johnston is Director of the Center for Higher Education Retention Excellence (CHERE).  In addition to leading the development of CHERE, Mr. Johnston is currently teaching First Year Introduction to freshmen at Eastern Connecticut State University, and Social Welfare Policy at the University of Saint Joseph.

Mr. Johnston spent 10 years with Casey Family Services, the Direct Service Arm of The Annie E. Casey Foundation, where he led the creation of a life skills learning approach for foster youth and their families, a foster youth alumni group, a youth-run business model, and an Individual DevelopmentAccount program for Casey foster youth; co-created and staffed a statewide committee dedicated to enhancing campus support for foster youth; and led the planning of several two-day conferences for Casey foster youth.   He retired from the Foundation in 2011.

Previously, Mr. Johnston ran three different youth agencies, conducted needs assessments for major corporations and United Way organizations, and did extensive consulting work for major corporations on their public affairs and corporate social responsibility strategies.   Mr. Johnston has a BA from Dartmouth College, an MS in Urban Planning from the University of Wisconsin, and an MBA from Columbia University.