Matt Rosen departing FYA in late September 2019

Posted on September 10, 2019

Dear FYA Family, 

With deep gratitude and appreciation for all of you, I must share that I have accepted a new position as Chief Program Officer at Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco, and my last day as executive director of Foster Youth in Action (FYA) is September 26th.  

I have been so fortunate to have had the privilege of serving in this role for the last five years, and to have been able to follow the footsteps of FYA’s founder Janet Knipe.  

My greatest honor has been the chance to stand in solidarity and partnership with young leaders across our network!  You are incredible young organizers and advocates, who despite myriad challenges and roadblocks, are fearlessly pushing to make the world a better, safer, more hopeful place for their peers in foster care.  Your stories, your actions, and your dedication inspired me daily - it was truly the fuel that powered me as we fought to create more opportunities for young people with experience in care to lead.  

My hat is off to our amazing, dedicated, and creative staff, who are truly the heart of FYA. Your passion, your commitment, and your expertise are why we have such innovative, high-impact, and vital programs, and why FYA’s best work is yet to come.

Behind the scenes of our network of grassroots, youth-led groups are some of the most incredible adult allies and supporters.  From my first days at FYA, you welcomed me into the fold, told me what I needed to know and kept me honest. I am so grateful to have had a chance to work with so many of you.  

I am so proud of all we have accomplished in the five years I have served as FYA’s executive director, and so excited about the future of our network and our movement. When I joined FYA in 2014, we had one staff member (me) and six partners; now we’re now edging to 30 partners in 22 states and provinces, and with a powerful framework, a replicable set of tools and strategies, a track record of training thousands of young leaders, and growing power to affect change at all levels.  

It’s never a “good time to leave” but I feel like I am moving on fully confident that the important work we do continues through the terrific programs leadership by our director of programs Anna Gennari, and because of the power that comes when we all come together to work for change.  

 In community,

 Matt Rosen

Executive Director, Foster Youth in Action


Dear Colleagues, 

It is with sadness and gratitude that I announce that Matt Rosen, FYA’s Executive Director, is resigning FYA effective September 26th, 2019, and we wish him the best of luck in his exciting new role as Chief Program Officer for Habitat for Humanity Greater San Francisco.

 As executive director, Matt expanded our staff, our budgets, and our programs, helping FYA launch new strategies and significantly increasing our impact, visibility, and reach.  

 Over the next few months, the board of directors will lead the search for our next leader, and manage the transition to ensure that we continue uninterrupted all the valuable programs and services we offer to youth leaders and their adult partners.  FYA has formed a transition committee, and is focusing on: 

  • Engaging the board, staff and stakeholders in the transition and related communications;
  • Conducting an organizational assessment to identify future leadership needs and guide interim and permanent leadership in their work; 
  • Building organizational leadership capacity to support the transition and sustainability; and  
  • Conducting an executive search. 

For our board, this is a bittersweet moment for us. We are happy for him as he takes his next step, and grateful for the place he’s helped bring us to.  His commitment, leadership, vision, and enthusiasm will most certainly be missed.  

 Please join me, our board, and our staff in thanking Matt for his years of service and contribution to Foster Youth in Action and to our community of young leaders.  


 Jamie Wang

Chair, Foster Youth in Action Board of Directors