Debbie Cochrane is vice president of The Institute for College Access & Success (TICAS), a nonprofit, nonpartisan research and policy organization based in Oakland, California, that works to make higher education more available and affordable for people of all backgrounds. Cochrane is an expert on student aid policy and practice and has testified before state and federal policymakers on topics ranging from access to need-based grants to debt relief for defrauded students. Cochrane leads TICAS’ national work on community college issues and its California policy program. Her research focuses on financial aid’s relationship to access and success and practical ways to lower affordability obstacles. Reporters and policymakers frequently cite her research and policy analyses, and she has built statewide coalitions to support strong financial aid programs and better student outcomes. Before joining TICAS, Cochrane was a policy analyst at the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education. She holds a master’s degree with a focus on social policy from San Francisco State University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan.