SXSW EDU Founder Ron Reed - Photo by Andy Wenstrand

A Letter From the Founder of SXSW EDU

I’m so proud of everything we have accomplished together. Now after 15 years, I’m passing the baton.

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By Ron Reed




It has been my pleasure and privilege to have launched and led SXSW EDU since it started in 2011. For the past 15 years, I’ve had more fun than the law usually allows! Helping engage and bring together an incredible community of tens of thousands of caring learning-aligned professionals to make the world a better, smarter, and more just place has certainly been more a gift than a job to me.

This past March, SXSW EDU was one of our biggest and best events. As we launch the new season for SXSW EDU 2025, I’m more excited than ever but I’ve also taken the opportunity to pause, reflect, and consider the go forward.

I am ecstatic and so pleased that my longtime colleague, collaborator, co-founder, and friend, Greg Rosenbaum will fully oversee SXSW EDU — the team and the event. Frankly, he has been doing the work for some time, allowing me to dream and scheme. If you know me, you know Greg. We’ve worked together throughout the trajectory of SXSW EDU — one of the reasons for his graying hair, though I will note that I have learned much more from him than the other way around.

I am so very, very proud of what we have accomplished together — not just Greg and me and our amazing team, but you and us, as a community. Together, we’ve built a professional home that’s honest and optimistic, aspirational yet grounded, and heartfelt with a commitment to seeing, hearing, and supporting all our learners and colleagues.

SXSW EDU has truly grown into its South By roots as a rich and impactful convergence experience. That it is in support of an inspired community that’s committed to driving positive impact across the lifespan of learning, is to our collective benefit and good fortune.

My high school friend is one of the founders of SXSW, Roland Swenson. We often meet for breakfast on Saturday mornings (migas and screwdrivers!). I appreciate Roland letting me leverage his strong foundation, to build up an education vertical for South by Southwest. It helped make SXSW EDU cool and it helped make SXSW smarter.

For my part, I am excited to leave SXSW EDU in such a strong position with a community that is emboldened to continue to make an impact in education. I’m also thrilled that I can pass the baton to Greg, the best leader I know.

I plan to stay connected to SXSW EDU and continue to help in any way that I can. I will always be a part of SXSW EDU and it will always be a part of me. I look forward to attending next year as a registrant. It will be fun to sit in front of stages rather than behind them. I have some other projects and interests both personal and professional awaiting, too, but you can always reach me at

Thank you sincerely for all your kind and generous support through the years, it’s been truly humbling and an absolute blast! I’m excited for all the goodness that awaits and look forward to seeing you next March at SXSW EDU 2025.

In gratitude,


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