Founder & CEO
Jeff Patterson has been starting businesses since he was five. Some were failures while others were marginal survivors, and those prior businesses set the groundwork for the success of Gaggle. Seeking a solution to manage student safety issues, Jeff founded Gaggle as a secure student email provider in 1999. As trends in risky student behavior like self-harm, violence toward others, cyberbullying, and child pornography grew, he expanded Gaggle’s offering to include products that help schools create safe learning environments. Unable to find investors when he first launched the company, Jeff has enjoyed not having a boss for the past two decades and uses this freedom to express his creativity and sense of fun—all while helping save kids.
Vice President, Operations
With a focus on providing support and guidance for Gaggle educational partners, Heather Durkac oversees an award-winning Customer Service team, the vital Safety Management team, and the superb Implementation, Professional Development, and Account Management teams. Heather brings nearly 20 years of experience in management, customer relations, and training from both the corporate sector and the K-12 environment. Passionate about keeping students safe, she values the partnership with customers to ensure school leaders and staff are equipped with the means to effectively respond to student safety concerns.
Vice President, Marketing
Paget Hetherington has empowered children to achieve academic success for more than three decades, leading sales and marketing efforts for global publishing and EdTech companies. As the vice president of Marketing, Paget's focus is spreading Gaggle's message to school districts across the country, helping to ensure the safety and well-being of students. Prior to Gaggle, Paget led marketing efforts with industry sector leaders VitalSource, Mimio, Lexia Learning, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Dorling Kindersley, and Vivendi Universal Publishing.
Casey Lee oversees the development and delivery of Gaggle’s innovative student safety products. He has been architecting, building, and supporting software systems for over 20 years at organizations ranging from startups to Fortune 500 enterprises. Prior to joining Gaggle, Casey led consulting practices that helped organizations increase the speed and safety of software delivery through techniques such as microservices, cloud, and DevOps.
A seasoned sales vice president with over two decades of experience in education and commercial accounts, Bill McCullough is responsible for directing Gaggle’s national sales efforts. Prior to joining Gaggle, Bill was vice president at Odysseyware, a provider of online curriculum and learning solutions. He also spent time as a regional vice president at CompassLearning, which followed a 13-year career in various management roles at IBM. A father of two, Bill is passionate about making a positive impact on children’s lives while keeping them safe and secure every day.
Chief Financial Officer
Ron Zoibi brings to Gaggle more than 30 years of experience in public accounting, consulting, human resources, technology, and tax strategies for closely held businesses. Prior to joining Gaggle, Ron served as CFO of ghSMART, the gold standard in management advisory services to private equity and Fortune 500 companies, as well as CFO of Pro Financial Services Inc, the largest specialty disability insurance agency in North America. Along with the responsibility of leading strategy, finance, recruiting, and HR for Gaggle, Ron is an active member of the American Institute of Public Accountants, the Illinois CPA Society, and the National Society of Tax Professionals. Ron holds a CPA, an MBA from the Keller Graduate School of Management, and a B.S. in Accounting from the University of Illinois.