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Jonathan Starr

Founder, Abaarso School of Science and Technology
Jonathan Starr founded and became Headmaster of the Abaarso School of Science and Technology, a non-profit educational organization in Somaliland, in 2008. In December 2015, he passed on the headmaster position to lead Abaarso’s largest donor, the Horn of Africa Education Development Fund. Despite its brief existence, Abaarso School has broken a decades long drought in Somali education with unprecedented success, including placing students at Harvard, Yale, Brown, MIT, Amherst, and Swarthmore. Abaarso now has 80 students attending highly regarded universities and private schools around the world.  This has all been accomplished while operating at a cost structure that is a small fraction of similar schools in Africa and the Middle East.


From 2004 to 2008, Jonathan founded and led Flagg Street Capital, a private investment firm that managed $170 million of investor assets. Prior to Flagg Street, Jonathan worked as an Analyst at SAB Capital and at Blavin and Company, both well-respected private investment firms. His career started as a Research Associate within the Taxable Bond Division at Fidelity Investments. In addition to his full-time professional responsibilities, Jonathan sat on the Board of Directors of Pomeroy IT Solutions, a publicly traded US information technology company generating approximately $500 million of annual sales. Jonathan’s board responsibilities included acting as a member of the Audit Committee, the Advisory Committee, and the Special Committee (strategic alternatives) of Pomeroy.

Jonathan graduated from Emory University, where he received a B.A. Summa Cum Laude in Economics and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.